Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association
Membership Counts - E-Update

November 2011 ~ Vol. 2 Issue 11

What's in this Issue:

UUA Health Plan
Open Enrollment

The Health Plan Trustees have been able to do the near-impossible for 2012 – increasebenefits and lower rates. The November Open Enrollment is an opportunity to join the Plan, even for congregations and their staff that have missed past Open Enrollments.

Base rates will go down 5%. The Plan’s age-banded rate structure adds a bit each year to rates for people who stay in the plan, but the base rate decrease more than offsets the age adjustment. No onewill receive a rate increase, and most will see a decrease in their billing rates. Congregations and staff currently in the Plan will automatically be rolled over to the new 2012 rates.

On the benefits side, the generic prescription drug co-pay will be lowered to $10, the outpatient mental health co-pay will be lowered to $20, as will all of the co-pays for physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy.

Jim Sargent, the UUA Health Plan Director (jsargent@uua.org), urges congregations that have not already joined the Plan to consider the Plan’s track record for premium increases (less than 16% over five years), its history of benefit improvements, and the Plan’s social justice commitment, and think about joining the more than 300 congregations that have become part of the UUA Health Plan movement.

Standing on the Side of Love Clergy Shirts

If you would be interested in ordering a Standing on the Side of Love Clergy Shirt you may indicate that by using the following survey form: http://uuma.site-ym.com/surveys/?id=Clergy_Shirts_Interest.

Completing this form is not the same as ordering the shirt but rather will let the organizers know if it is reasonable to complete an order. Once the survey has been completed and shirts ordered you will receive information on how to order and pay for your shirt. If you have questions you may contact Joan Van Becelaere at JVanBecelaere@uua.org

Save the Dates:
June 18-20 Ministry Days 2012

At their meetings last week the UUMA Board established a task force to determine if we should add an extra day of programming to Ministry Days 2012.  The extra day of programming will dedicated to social justice issues and preparing for General Assembly.  The UUMA Board will finalize the Ministry Days schedule on their December conference call.  For now save Monday evening June 18 - Wednesday afternoon June 20 for UUMA Ministry Days.  Watch this E-Update and the UUMA News for more information as it becomes available.  In the mean time save the dates: June 18-20, 2012.

Membership Contributions

A reminder that dues are waived for our Life Members. However, we are grateful to our generous Life Members for their continued support in the form of yearly contributions. If you would like to make a contribution you may do so online at:


Quick Links:



Dear UUMA Life Member,

(Life Members:  As you can see below these are busy days at the UUMA.  I have been telling you that we are in the process of putting together a task force to look at how we can continue to improve relationships between retired and settled ministers.  Bill Hamilton-Holway, UUMA President, will convene the task force as soon as we finish recruiting people to serve.  We have representatives from the Interim Ministry Guild, a retired minister and partner from the UU Retired Ministers and Partners Association and Keith Kron from the UUA so far.  We should have everyone selected by the end of the month.  I'll let you know who is serving on the task force and plans for the work next month.  As always, please let me know if you have any questions and/or suggestions!)

What a busy October!  I had the honor of preaching three consecutive Sundays, in three different time zones, for Association Sunday; I met with our CENTER team to work on plans for the many new programs we are working on; I observed the UUA Board meeting and visited Occupy Boston with the trustees and I met in Phoenix with our UUMA Board of Trustees and several of our colleagues to work on our strategic plan and our plans for Ministry Days and General Assembly 2012 (among many things.)

I worry that we have more going on at the UUMA than you, our members, can keep up with.  New programming and new possibilities are exciting and wonderful but only if people know enough about them to ask questions and participate.  Our emails and newsletters get lost with other emails and newsletters to the point that all these words can become more "blah, blah, blah".

I hope you read everything we send but in case you don't....

Are you in final fellowship and want to spend two years studying, practicing and teaching preaching and worship arts?  If so Beyond the Call: Preaching and Worship Arts is for you.  Some of our finest preachers and liturgists - Mark Belletini, Kathleen Rolenz and Abhi Janamanchi - are the program's deans.  You will meet with 20-30 colleagues four times a year; have many contacts between retreats and help lead small groups of colleagues who want to improve their preaching and worship leadership just like you.  For more information on the program go to https://uuma.site-ym.com/?beyondthecall Interested?: click here to apply (the deadline is December 31) and click here to ask any questions you have.

Are you committed to deepening your intercultural competency and want to work with and lead other colleagues in doing the same?  Our next UUMA-wide conversation is titled, "Who Are Our Neighbors?" and 20-30 UUMA members will be trained by Beth Zemsky in May 2012.  Chapter and regional conversations will begin in the fall of 2012 and training for lay leaders and other religious professionals will begin in fall 2013.  Click here for more information; Interested?: click here to apply (the deadline is November 30) and click here to ask any questions you have.

Do you know a colleague who is good at some aspect of ministry and has the personality and skills to excel as a peer coach?  Is that person you?  We are looking for people who will make excellent peer coaches!  Coaches must be in final fellowship and will given coaching training by an outside organization next Spring.  Coaches will begin working with other UUMA members in the fall of 2012. For more information on the program go to https://uuma.site-ym.com/?coaching; Interested?: click here to apply (the deadline is December 31) and click here to ask any questions you have.

These new programs will be funded in large part by the proceeds from Association Sunday.  Thank you for your participation and leadership in our ministry!


Don Southworth
UUMA Executive Director

Whose Are We? Congregational Curriculum Available

Thank you to everyone who has posted sermons and essays on "Whose Are We?" on the UUMA website.  We will be announcing the three chapters with the greatest participation in the program next month.  The coordinating team has finished a curriculum that UUMA members can use with the congregations and other institutions they serve.  Find the PDF Curriculum here: http://www.uuma.org/resource/resmgr/Docs/WhoseAreWeforCongregations7_.pdf

2013 Institute for Excellence in Ministry Program Taking Shape

The CENTER team is working on finalizing the program schedule for the 2013 UUMA CENTER Institute for Excellence in Ministry.  Some of the people who have already been confirmed to present seminars include James Forbes, Rebecca Parker, Susan Ritchie, Mark Hicks and Dan McKanan.  The 2013 Institute will be held January 28-February 1 at the Sirata Resort in St. Pete's Beach, Florida.  The final program schedule and registration will be available in February 2012.  We are accepting deposits of either $100 or $300 towards the cost of the 2013 Institute. We anticipate the total cost to be in the $725 - $1200 range and offer the chance to make a deposit so you spread out the cost. Everyone who pays a deposit will be entered into the raffle for a free Institute registration to be announced at the 2012 Ministry Days. To read more and to put down a deposit visit: uuma.site-ym.com/event/institute

New Member Forum for the Occupy Movement


Recently a letter from UUMA Board Member Parisa Parsa was posted to the Standing on the Side of Love blog re: Occupy.  (http://www.standingonthesideoflove.org/blog/bringing-love-to-the-occupy-movement/)  This letter resulted in a flurry of requests from colleagues for a forum in which to discuss the ministry challenges of presence at Occupy protests, as well as engage in some theological reflection -- among colleagues.

To this end the UUMA has established a forum to allow UUMA member to be in conversation regarding the Occupy Movement. This forum is not moderated and for sign-in UUMA members only.  We hope this is a real opportunity for us to be living into our role as supporting one another in growing more fully into religious leadership in our movement and in our world!

To see the forum log in the UUMA website and visit: https://uuma.site-ym.com/forums/

To post to the forum:

  • Click on the Topic/Thread you wish to read.
  • To comment or respond to a thread click on the conversation title then click "Reply"
  • Click on "Post New Topic" to start a new thread or conversation topic.

  • You can receive email notice of all new postings by clicking on "Subscribe".
  • You can subscribe to either a specific conversation thread -or- to the full forum.
  • You all have the choice to receive notices in digest form.
For help on using the forum contact the UUMA Administrator: administrator@uuma.org

UUMA Nominations

The UUMA Nominating Committee is actively seeking applications from ministers in final fellowship who have the time, energy and commitment for service to colleagues. If you have been thinking about stepping up to leadership in the UUMA, we encourage you to take a look at the UUMA Nominating Committee page (filed under Governance:Committees) on the UUMA website. There you can review job descriptions for the positions we are recruiting for this year. You can also complete an online Leadership Application. If you think you might be interested in being considered for service but would like to discuss your interest with a member of the Nominating Committee, please feel welcome to be in touch with any member of the committee.

In faith,

UUMA Nominating Committee (nomcom@uuma.org)

Melissa Carvill-Ziemer, Chair (mcarvillziemer@uuma.org)
Marta Valentin (mvalentin@uuma.org)
Roberta Finkelstein (revroberta@gmail.com)
Joan Montagnes (Rev_Joan@eastshoreunitarian.org)
Michael Nelson (yxman47@hotmail.com)

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
Email: executivedirector@uuma.org
Phone: 617-848-0416
Fax: 617-848-8122
This email has been sent to @@email@@ by executivedirector@uuma.org
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