Westside Welcomes Carter Smith, Our New Contract Minister

The Board and the Search Committee are extremely pleased to introduce Carter Smith (she, her pronouns) as our half time contract minister beginning March 1. Carter has been granted Preliminary Fellowship by the UUA and will be ordained by her home congregation in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, in May. At that time, she will formally take on the title of Reverend. We were impressed with Carter’s integrity, her curiosity about all things WSUU, her ability to problem solve, to connect with people of all ages and backgrounds, her love of Unitarian Universalism,  her actions that demonstrate a real commitment to

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A Restorative Practices Update from Pam Orbach

Dear WSUU community, The first four weeks of our Restorative Justice work at WSUU has been busy! When I ask the people who are taking time to sit in circle, “what’s changing for you?” The answers are powerful to hear…. more self connection, alignment of thoughts and actions with personal and community values, and care… We are slowing down to the speed of trust, considering what that takes…. making sure all voices present are deeply heard. We are a community discovering what matters. Core Team: We have held weekly trust and learning circles for a core team, defining the order

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Fall 2022 Worship Schedule

Fall Sunday Services Twice a Month September – December 2022 Watch for Additional Special Event Sunday Mornings This fall we will continue regular Sunday Services twice a month as we begin our part time minister contract search process. Services for September and October will continue to be on the second and fourth Sundays. Starting in November, we will switch to the first and third Sundays. This schedule may be expanded to additional Sundays with special events and/or activities sponsored by specific Westside committees. For example, on Sunday, September 18th, the Racial Justice Change Team will be sponsoring a Beloved Community

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Board Update August 2022

Dear Westside Community, As the fall approaches, your Board of Trustees is hopeful and excited about what is coming for Westside. We had the opportunity to come together for a retreat on Saturday, July 30, and set priorities for the coming year.  We will soon have an action plan available, but here is a preview: This year, our overarching principles guiding our work are equity, joy, and service.  Our priority areas of focus are community building (including right relations and racial justice work), selection of a part-time contract minister, and sustainable operations. We will also continue our ongoing commitments to

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Beloved Community Cafe September 18

On Sunday, September 18, 2022 we’re kicking off the effort to put our newly adopted 8th Principle into action at WSUU. Join the Racial Justice Change Team in coordination with the WSUU Board from 10:00 am – noon in the Social Hall to begin the co-creation of a plan to move forward on different aspects of what makes a Beloved Community. We’ll be following WSUU’s protocols for in-person events, including wearing masks and spreading out. We realize that the café on the 18th will not work for everyone, so there will also be a follow-up Zoom event on Wednesday, September

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Accessing Workshops Offered at GA 2022

Workshops offered at GA and how to access them: Many UUs from across the country and world generously shared their knowledge and experience with other UUs as part of scheduled or on-demand workshops. Some are available online now, and others will become available in mid-September. All relate to our faith and/or church operations in some way. Topics include right relations, stewardship, music, religious exploration, and many more. The three workshops I attended during GA were excellent, and the others probably would be too. To find a workshop that fits your (or your committee’s) interests: First, look through pp. 23–48 of

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Overall Impressions of GA from Westside’s Delegate

By Kerrie Schurr, GA Delegate Overall Impressions of GA:The pandemic has been hard on people, as acknowledged multiple times during GA:Moderator Charles DuMond described himself as “crispy”— he has more anxiety, fatigue,and irritability than prior to the pandemic. We were advised to be kind when speaking to eachother and to ask ourselves whether our words were necessary and ours to say (good advice forWSUU!). Other speakers said there is no such thing as “going back to normal,” and that weshould plan on having members who never set foot in churches—online is here to stay. President Rev. Susan Frederick-Gray’s address (36

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Article II Study Commission Update

Dear Friends, We have received word from so many of you who are eager to share the Article II Study Commission’s presentations with your congregations. We are pleased to say that we are extending the deadline for feedback to give folks a chance to view the presentations and share their ideas with us! Our feedback hub (padlet.com/a2sc/ga22) will remain open through July 18. You can view all the Article II presentations as follows by clicking the link above: Introduction to the work, Purpose, and Freedom of Belief in General Session II (beginning with Dan McKanan’s theological framing at 20:35 and our

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News from General Assembly 2022

by Kerrie Schurr, WSUU Delegate I am happy to report that my attendance at General Assembly (GA, the annual convention of UUs from around the world) in late June, was a very positive experience. I went into it feeling somewhat disconnected and discouraged about the state of our church and pandemic life in general, and not exactly looking forward to the business sessions. But the business sessions were streamlined from past years and downright pleasant, and the worship services and workshops I attended (all virtually) were wonderfully inspirational and/or informative. I found that other UUs are also struggling with life

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General Assembly 2022 Update

General Assembly Is Next Week! —by WSUU Delegate Kerrie Schurr, gadelegate2022@wsuu.org First, a big thank-you to those who attended the Zoom meetings this past week to learn more about GA business matters and share your thoughts! Second, please fill out this congregational survey about the business matters and candidates to be voted upon at GA—your opinion counts. Business matters to be voted upon at GA include the following (items in bold are especially important): Rules of Procedure: These govern how business is conducted at GA and are the very first thing voted on. These have been simplified to make delegate

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