With a New Director of Religious Education
On Stewardship Sunday, I mentioned a couple with young kids that had joined a very progressive Unitarian Universalist congregation. There was one problem: there wasn’t enough money. We are that congregation.
The church’s board of directors voted on balanced budget for 2020. You’ll agree that it makes sense to be a fiscally sound religious community.
That decision included eliminating our Director of Religious Education until we have pledges supporting the $21k salary plus benefits. That is the pledge drive shortfall this year. I am confident we can accomplish this before March because that’s our scheduled hire date. Without the funds, we will be DRE-less.
When called to the Unitarian Universalist Church of Las Cruces, I promised to rebuild RE. I remain committed to that covenant with the congregation. I need you to do your part, too.
In shared ministry, the congregation, board, and I join forces and make things happen. I charge you with finding creative ways to restore funding for the DRE position and attracting families to the congregation. It is vital that members take on this responsibility of welcoming young couples and making sure they feel VALUED and NEEDED in our community.
This community can do anything that it sets it mind on. That includes creating a warm, receptive religious education program that cultivates young hearts and minds in the Unitarian Universalist tradition.
Let your board know that you care and are committed to religious education. Let’s ring in the new year with a new DRE as our highest priority!
Happy New Year!
Community Quick Hit
The Gadfly Papers: Three Inconvenient Essays by One Pesky Minister by Todd Eklof
In my effort to help the congregation grow in awareness of what is happening in the Unitarian Universalist Association beyond the congregation, I will occasionally post items of interest on the Minister’s Musings page of our website. I’ve recently posted an essay by a Unitarian Universalist minister in response to a book entitled The Gadfly Papers, which has stirred up significant controversy in the UUA over the last two years.
The Gadfly Papers was written by Rev. Todd Eklof, a UU minister in Spokane, WA. It deals with many issues regarding UU leadership, hiring policies, and identity politics. People of color, their allies, and many others have spoken out against this publication because the author betrays UU values and our Principles.
The response that I’ve posted by Rev. Dennis McCarty is titled “A Unitarian Universalist Atheist Reads the Gadfly Papers.” I believe that Rev. McCarty treats the issues of white supremacy culture and anti-racism very carefully and thoughtfully.
The book is so controversial, and for many so hurtful, that colleagues told me not to read it.
Even if you haven’t read the book, as I haven’t, you will appreciate Rev. McCarty’s perspective and gain a better understanding of how the UUA is grappling with change and transformation at all levels of our structure. I commend the article to you. It is about 30 pages long, but worth the time to read it.