February 2021 Board Meeting Highlights

February 2021 Board Meeting Highlights

In an effort to keep the congregation in the loop on what is discussed and develops during Board Meetings, your Board of Trustees will be providing regular updates following monthly Board Meetings. These write-ups will serve as an informal recount of the meetings, whereas the Board Meeting minutes serve as a formal recap.

Board meetings occur on the 2nd Tuesday of each month at 6:30pm (EST) via Zoom and are open to the public. You are always welcome to attend to listen in when you wish, and we encourage you to stay connected to our work and progress through these monthly updates. 

Highlights from the February 9, 2021 Board Meeting:

Board member Colette Gelwicks provided inspiring opening words from Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu on compassion, generosity, and sharing. She then led the Board through a mindfulness meditation exercise/video from Grow Well on Loving Kindness.

The Board received and discussed several stewardship/fundraising updates, including an update that the Stewardship Council is meeting on a regular basis and that the 2021-22 pledge drive season will be kicking off on Sunday, February 28, 2021.

A BIG KUDOS to the incredible online 2021 Auction Team! The auction exceeded this year’s goal of $25,000 by raising over $29,000 and enhancing community connections for UUCC members and friends.  

Thus far, the congregation has raised about $4,500 for the Long Reach Head Start Center. Be on the lookout for a Good Governance blog post with more details and ideas of how you can get involved in this effort to support our local community.

Board members may be reaching out to you for conversations to strengthen our connections and gain insights. In addition, consider staying after 10am Sunday worship services for the virtual coffee hours.

A special thanks to those who participated in the Trust & Reconciliation Committee’s active listening sessions. Starting in late November 2020, the UUCC community was invited to share their hopes, dreams, concerns, and frustrations for UUCC. 89 members and friends self-selected to participate, exhibiting incredible courage, eloquence, and vulnerability. Sessions are confidential and specific listening session comments will not be shared. The committee is now synthesizing the information and working on a diagnosis and recommendations, which will be given to the Board, as directed by its charge, later this spring.

The Beloved Community Committee is looking forward to coordinating with the Trust & Reconciliation Committee. The committee is working on reviewing a list of UUCC groups and their points of contact, and creating a catalog of current UUCC anti-racism activities and events.  

Six Month Financial Update: Executive Director Sean Griffin presented a brief update of our current financial situation. Overall, the financial health of UUCC is very good as of the close of 2020. Income and pledges are running ahead of last year and expenses are running slightly below budget. One area of concern is to increase our focus and spending for our incubators for good, enabling us to project our values and mission both within our UUCC community and outward for the improvement of the broader community.

UUA Proposed Statement of Conscience: As part of the annual certification process, the UUA has put a question forward asking congregations to vote on whether or not to include a Statement of Conscience (SOC) on the agenda for the UUA General Assembly (GA) in June 2021. 

You may view the full proposed statement here: https://www.uua.org/action/process/csais/undoing-intersectional-white-supremacy/draft-soc-undoing-intersectional-white

The draft statement addresses undoing intersectional white supremacy with a call to prophetic action, specifically:

  • Engaging in our communities and the nation to heal the evil of racism
  • Carrying forward the recommended healing actions expressed in the UUA’s Widening the Circle of Concern Report, and,
  • Building relationships across the boundaries of privilege and oppression

The Board believes the draft statement will benefit from further discussions, clarification, and refinement. In particular the use of the terms “intersectionality” and “street protests” were cited as needing further clarification. However, the spirit of the statement is aligned with the Beloved Community Resolution that the congregation adopted by the congregation last summer at the Annual Meeting and reflects UUCC’s goals of promoting equity and justice in our community, nation, and the world. (You may view full wording of the resolution at the bottom of our What We Believe webpage). Therefore, the Board voted unanimously to support the statement, placing the draft Statement of Conscience on the agenda for the 2021 General Assembly for debate, discussion, and consideration.

Kristen closed the meeting with the following quote from Malcolm X:

Don’t be in a hurry to condemn because he doesn’t do what you do or think as you think or as fast. There was a time when you didn’t know what you know today.

In community,

UUCC’s Board of Trustees
(Tim Lattimer, President; Colette Gelwicks, Kristin Parrish, Wendy Ramsey, Jim Johnston, Amy Brooks, and Sarah Basehart)

Questions? Please email us at board@uucolumbia.net

4 Comments

  1. Suzi Gerb

    I am so glad you’re doing this. It makes it much easer for us to keep track of what’s going on at the Board.

  2. Jen Hayashi

    Wow! Thank you for sharing these notes, and for doing the hard work you are doing. I love this move to increase the board’s visibility and transparency!

  3. Jill Christianson

    Thank you UUCC Board of Trustees for sharing this update to the congregation and beyond. The free flow of information is critical to shaping and keeping trust in our spiritual community. It is especially valuable to know about your discussion on the UUA Statement of Conscience, including possible road bumps, in preparation for the 2021UUCC engagement with the General Assembly.
    I appreciate the thoughtful leadership.

  4. Kathy Parker

    Thank you for sharing this information from the February Board Meeting. I esp. appreciated reading the draft of the Statement of Conscience. I agree that the word “intersectionality” needs some parsing out. I find that word a bit “off-putting” in that it seems to convey a number of meanings that are only clear to some people. It’s a word that also puts the dialogue into an academic sphere that is somewhat elitist. Maybe there is another way to talk about these connections.

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