E-Update: December 2014
From the Executive Director

Yesterday I returned from a week's vacation. A lot happened while I was at the beach with my family looking at the ocean, cooking my favorite meal of the year and beginning serious preparations/decorations for my favorite holiday of the year. The New York Times published an article about the ongoing saga at my alma mater, Starr King School for the Ministry. A grand jury in Ferguson determined there wasn't enough evidence to charge a white police officer with killing an unarmed black man. There was a lot more that happened in the world the last ten days but these two events, if one is to trust social media, have taken up a lot of our members' attention and time.


There are many strong opinions about these events ... READ MORE

Why I Love the UUMA Board

I have been deeply moved by the commitment of my fellow board members to our mission, to the work of improving our individual and collective cultural competency, and to good governance. As a learning and governing body, the Board works diligently and with devotion to leadership for our faith. We work hard, we play well, we welcome new colleagues, and we mourn colleagues whose lives have ended. (The Board holds a memorial service twice a year for all of our colleagues who have died in the past six months.) And yes, we seek to hold our staff and members accountable to our mission and to one another...  READ MORE

Update From Ferguson

UUMA CENTER team member Julie Taylor has been working closely with our colleagues in the metro St. Louis area witnessing and ministering in Ferguson.  We asked her to share information this month that she thought our colleagues would like to know.  


Dear Colleagues:


The grand jury decision to not indict Darren Wilson in the death of Michael Brown has not ended the movement. Actions continue across the country mostly led by young people of color, calling for justice and transformation of a failed system that devalues the lives of black and brown people. 


The UU Ferguson Response Team has a set of resources that may be useful to you. Click here for a worship toolkit, media toolkit, messaging, and RE resources. Additional resources may be found on the St. Louis Standing on the Side of Love Facebook page and the Standing on the Side of Love's website... READ MORE

Join #GivingTuesday today with a gift to Sustaining the Call!

Melissa Carvill Ziemer Sustaining the Call Testimonial
Melissa Carvill Ziemer
Sustaining the Call Testimonial


December 2 has been deemed #GivingTuesday, a global day dedicated to giving back.  Charities, families, businesses, community centers and students around the world are being invited to come together today for one common purpose:  to celebrate generosity and ago give.   Unitarian Universalist institutions are joining in the fun by inviting us to give to our favorite organizations including those who are connected with our faith.  Today is a great day to consider making a pledge or donation to Sustaining the Call, the UUMA's first endowment campaign to support today's and tomorrow's ministers. For more details on the campaign click here, to see our new wall of appreciation which gives thanks for those who have given click here.


Each month one of our members tells why they have chosen to support the UUMA.  This month Melissa Carvill Ziemer, one of our newly trained UUMA coaches shares her story.  Thanks to Melissa and to everyone who is making sure the UUMA will be able to continue to develop new programs to support and enrich Unitarian Universalist ministers' lives!


If you want more information about the campaign contact Don Southworth or co-chairs Kendyl Gibbons or Marlin Lavanhar
Mentor Training for Chapters
Interested in being trained as a mentor? The UUMA/UUA is now offering Mentor Training for chapters/clusters/regions. Learn more here and contact Allison Palm if you would like to get a Mentor Training scheduled in your area. 
 Quick Survey


It's hard to believe but Ministry Days 2015 are less than seven months away!  We are working hard putting together a wonderful program for our time together and we need your help.  This month we would love to hear from you on what collegial conversations you'd like to take part in. The UUMA Board of Trustees will use your input to determine what will be on the agenda. Click here to take the survey.


Last month we asked you how well your collegiality needs were being met.  50% of you said your needs were being met, 34% said they were somewhat being met and 16% said they weren't being met.  The Collegial Development Committee will be reviewing the results and using them as part of their work in creating a strategic plan for how the UUMA can improve our capacity to nurture excellence in ministry through collegiality.  Thanks to everyone who participated in the survey!

Last Chance to Register for the 2015 Institute for Excellence in Ministry!

Have you been putting off registering for the upcoming Institute? Now's the time to decide! Registration and Housing both close on December 15.


Register Here

Sign Up to Get
a UUMA Coach

"Coaching involves holding out a possibility in front of others while coaching them to move to the next level with relentless compassion" 

- Robert Hargrave


Manish Mishra Marzetti On Coaching
Manish Mishra Marzetti On Coaching

UUMA Peer Coaches work one-on-one with colleagues over a one-year timespan to help them achieve specific professional goals to take their ministries to the next level. A new batch of coaches was trained last month and will be paired with coachees in January. Want to learn more? Sign up for our Webinar on December 10! 


Click here for more information and to sign up to get a coach.


Memberships Renewals

Thank you to all who renewed their membership by the November 15th deadline!


For those of you who have not yet been able to scratch it off your 'to do' list we invite you to renew today. If you are mailing a check or experiencing a momentary 'flutter in the force' you can extend your membership to January 15, 2015.  


Please do not let money be the reason your membership lapses.  The UUMA offers waivers to members who are need. These waivers are available until January 15 - so please let us know soon if a waiver would be of help!


For help with a waiver or extension, or with any other UUMA matter, contact Janette Lallier.

Important Survey on Your Seminary Experience coming this week  


The UUMA is collaborating with the Panel on Theological Education on a survey designed to get critical information from every aspirant and UUMA member on their seminary experience so that we can better understand the economic realities and choices for seminarians and ministers.  Your participation in the survey will help us create plans on how to best support seminarians and UU identity-based seminaries in the future.  The survey will be coming from Survey Monkey on Friday or early next week.  Please set aside the 20-30 minutes it will take to fill the survey and get it into as possible.  

UUMA Connect Corner

Join a UUMA Connect Curator Team


Connect Curator Teams are made up of 3-5 UUMA members who are interested in and accomplished in one of the nine duties of ministry outlined in Fulfilling the Call. The team collectively holds responsibility for collecting and posting resources on UUMA Connect for their designated duty. Teams will meet online at least once every two months (more often if the team desires) to talk about their duty, discuss goals for posting, brainstorm ideas for how to oldest more resources, and offer support. If the team desires, they may also use this time to engage in a shared learning experience together, focused their duty of ministry. Members of Curator Teams are asked to serve a minimum of one year.  Contact Allison if you are interested or want to learn more!

Wishing you could be at this year's Institute for Excellence in Ministry but just can't get there? 

We can't give you the beach, but we CAN give you some of the learning! For the first time ever, we are offering an off-site track for those who can't make it out to Asilomar for the UUMA CENTER Institute: "Preaching & Worship for the Future Church and the Future of Church" with Rev. Michael Piazza (Click Here for the full program description)



  • Required online orientation during the week of January 12
  • Tuesday, February 3, 10am-12pm Pacific and 2-5pm Pacific
  • Wednesday, February 4, 10am-12pm Pacific
  • Thursday, February 5, 10am-12pm Pacific and 2-5pm Pacific

Costs: $50 for UUMA Members; $100 for non-Members


What you'll need: 

  • An internet connection  (recommended speeds: 1.5Mbps/1.5Mbps (up/down)) For optimum experience: (you can join small groups by phone)
  • Speakers and a microphone - built-in or USB plug-in or wireless Bluetooth
  • A webcam or HD webcam - built-in or USB plug-in
  • Download Zoom (free video-conferencing application)

Registration Deadline is January 9. Cancelation fee of $10 for any cancelations prior to January 25. No refunds offered after January 25CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

Meetups at the Institute

This year we are making easier than ever to gather groups of people together for conversation, meet and greets, games, yoga, or whatever else you'd like to do! We have created a Meetup group for the UUMA and anyone can create a Meetup or look over what's been created and join in. Click here to join the group. For more information, click here.  Feel free to email Allison if you have any questions or difficulties.

Beyond the Call:  Entrepreneurial Ministry Program Class Set

Our second Beyond the Call program class (a partnership with the UUA) has been selected and will start the two-year program in January 2015 the weekend before the Institute.  The BTC-Entrepreneurial Ministry program has 26 students including three UCC ministers and two Reformed Jewish rabbis.   The class ranges in age from mid twenties to mid sixties,  includes UU parish and community ministers from around North America and three non-ordained religious professionals.  Students will study with faculty from business schools throughout the United States and active religious entrepreneurs.  The UUMA will be offering more programming/classes on entrepreneurial ministry in addition to BTC, some of which will be taken from the two-year program.  

Where Leads Our Call?

Our next UUMA-wide conversation is titled Where Leads Our Call?  We will be discussing/reflecting/examining on the future of our individual and collective ministries.   The program will be available for chapters/clusters beginning in the fall of 2015.  Later this month we will be posting information on how to apply to be one of our program facilitators who will be responsible for co-leading the conversations.  The train the trainers session will be held in late April or early May 2015.  Keep an eye on the UUMA website and our Facebook page for when applications will be accepted.  For more information about "Where Leads Our Call?" click here.

Be In Touch!

Please share your questions, feedback and ideas!

Thank you for your service in the world and for your commitment and passion for ministry.



Rev. Don Southworth,  

Executive Director  
617-848-0416 (phone)  
617-848-8122 (fax)  

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