Gathering of Boards - 22 September 2012

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Douglas Zelinski and Karen Bellavance
-
Grace

Clara Barton & Massachusetts Bay Districts of the UUA at: www.cbd
-
mbd
-
uua.org


1

Gathering of Boards
-

22

September

2012


We come here, to be together, because this is how we believe our lives are best lived:

in questioning and in conversation,

in compassion and in service,

in gratitude and in joy,

in companionship,

and in love.





R
ev Alison Wohler


Assumptions for the Day

1.

The purpose of religion is to shape society’s values.

2.

Congregations proclaim and exemplify particular sets of values.

3.

The Board’s purpose is to discern the desired values and describe the desired shape of
society.

4.

UU Board members are UU spiritual leaders.

5.

Spiritual growth opportunities are abundant.

6.

Congregations are emotional systems.

7.

Awareness of how the system function
s can align members and release
positive
energy.

8.

Intentionality shapes the future.

9.

Each staff p
erson a
nd every lay leader has
specific gift
s

to bring in service of
congregational mission.

10.

Lay leadership exists alongside work and family commitments.

11.

This conversation is only one part of an ongoing process.


G
oals

for the Day

As a result of the conve
rsations begun today (and continued), board members will be better
able to:

1.

Understand how the board expresses UU values.

2.

Clarify your discernment and decision
-
making process.

3.

Strive to claim the work that is your own and allow others to do theirs.

4.

Align y
our energy toward a shared vision of success.


Question 1:
What guides our Board’s decision
-
making process and grounds it in
Unitarian Universalism?



What is our common understanding of how we reach decisions?



What makes our decision
-
making process a Unita
rian Universalist one?



What tools help keep us mindful of

our process and of UU values?



When we disagree, how does UU

help move us toward resolution?



How wou
ld we know if our decisions

veered off course?



Question 2: What really is our work and what work

is for our committees and

for our
staff?



What is our regular cycle for discerning values and casting a vision?



When does something rise to the level of Board intervention?



What differentiates our work from the work of our staff and committees?

Douglas Zelinski and Karen Bellavance
-
Grace

Clara Barton & Massachusetts Bay Districts of the UUA at: www.cbd
-
mbd
-
uua.org


2



How do comm
ittees and staff know whose work is what?



What tools could help everyone know their role
s
?


Question 3:
What does success look like for our board

and for me as a member?



How will we know if we correctly di
scern the congregation’s values,…



…and if we cast a
n inspiring vision of society that honors those values?



How will the congregation know if it is shaping society in ways that honor that vision?



How will we know our work together has benefited our own spiritual development?



How will I know I have been a fa
ithful board member?


Resources

Spirituality:



A Leader’s Guide to Reflective Practice

by Judy Brown, Trafford Publishing..



Practicing Right Relationship: Skills for Deepening Purpose, Finding Fullfillment, and
Increasing Effectiveness in Your Congregation

by Mary K. Sellon & Daniel P. Smith, Alban
Institute.




Serving with Grace: Lay Leadership as Spiritual Practice
by Erik Walker Wikstrom, Skinner
House Books


Emotional Systems



Healthy Congregations, A Systems Approach

by Peter Steinke, Alban Institu
te
.



How

Your Church Family Works: Understanding Congregations as Emotional Systems

by
Pe
ter Steinke, Alban Institute
.


Discerning Values and Casting Vision



Governance and Ministry: Rethinking Board Leadership

by Dan Hotchkiss, Alban Institute.



Holy Conversations
: Strategic Planning as a Spiritual Practice for Congregations
, by Gil
Rendle & Alice Mann, Alban Institute.



Kicking Habits: Welcome Relief for Addicted Churches

by Thomas G. Bandy, Abingdon
Press.


UU Values and Identity



A Chosen Faith; An Introduction to

Unitarian Universalism

by John Buehrens and Forrest
Church, Beacon Press.



Engaging our Theological Diversity
, by The Commission on Appraisal of the Unitarian
Universalist Association.



“Got Purpose?” 5
-
part workshop series by Doug Zelinski, Clara Barton an
d Mass Bay
Districts of the UUA. All available on the District website:
http://www.cbd
-
mbd
-
uua.org/drupal/
presentations
.



The
Lay and Liberal Doctrine of the Church: The Spirit and the Promise of Our Covenant
.
2000 Minns Lecture series by Alice Blair Wesley, Meadville Lombard Theological School.
Also available online at
http://minnslectures.org/archive/wesley/wesley.htm


Evaluation



Behavioral Covenants in Congregations by Gilbert R. Rendle, Alban Institute.

Douglas Zelinski and Karen Bellavance
-
Grace

Clara Barton & Massachusetts Bay Districts of the UUA at: www.cbd
-
mbd
-
uua.org


3



When Better Isn’t Enough, Evaluation Tools for the 21st Century Church

by Jill Hudson,
Alban Institute.