Progress update on board goals

As new members have been nominated for next year’s UUCF Board of Directors, we are looking back at accomplishments for the 2015-16 term. It has been a busy year, in an exciting time of new possibilities, and we are grateful for the opportunities to serve this congregation. Board of Directors 2015-16 priorities – approved Nov. 3, 2015 Goal 1: In collaboration with the UUCF Coordinating Team (CT), develop strategies to identify, build support for and implement one or more bold initiatives that demonstrate and practice UU values in new ways beyond the UUCF campus and increase our impact as agents of positive change (lead team members – Nigel Astell, Judy […]

All That We Have

As we end our annual pledge drive and UUCF begins to prioritize its annual budget for the next congregational year, the board wanted to reinforce the words I offered a week ago Sunday: We give all that we have to something. Every ounce of energy, every spark of talent that you possess – great or small – and everything you will ever own (physically and metaphorically) will be given to something over your lifetime. What matters most? What impact do you want to have in the world? And when you find a place that can help you realize that, how far should you go to help it? I, like so […]

Shaping our Strategic Plan

“The possible’s slow fuse is lit by the imagination.” – Emily Dickinson We have begun dreaming about outcomes and shaping action plans to make progress toward the UUCF strategic goals that we agreed on in late 2015. On Feb. 20, the 20 members who make up the Board, the Coordinating Team and the Lay Ministers held a half-day facilitated brainstorming session to document our questions, concerns, assumptions, hopes and ideas. Those goals, including the breakout teams working on the initial plans, are: 1) Work with local UU congregations to identify innovative ways to share and leverage resources for the purpose of growing Unitarian Universalism in depth, size and impact. (Breakout […]

Dream big! Imagine boldly!

“Life is a celebration of awakenings, of new beginning and wonderful surprises that enlighten the soul.”  – Cielo When longtime member Stan Richards passed away last year, he left a bequest to this community that included $250,000 to “provide seed financing for innovative efforts to expand UUCF’s outreach to persons not now engaged.” Following Stan’s guidance, these Innovation Projects will explore new ways to spread UU values and principles to ever-larger communities. This is an extraordinary opportunity. We are looking for big ideas … dramatic new thoughts … high-risk, high-payoff experiments … things people have not tried before … approaches that might open up new ways of thinking about outreach […]

“UUCF: Part of a larger whole”

“Individually, we are one drop. Together, we are an ocean.” – Ryunosuke Satoro For those at last Sunday’s service, you heard Susan Bennett speak about the UU Legislative Ministry of Virginia. You may have also heard that UUCF’s membership comprises 13% of the almost 5,700 UUs in the state of Virginia (yes, only 5,700 total). Surprised? Do you feel that should change? As the Board of Directors begins its focus on our 2016 board goals, we remain keenly aware of two things: While we are a healthy and vibrant congregation, we have a long way to go to reach our ideals. And, we certainly aren’t in this alone. Starting closest to […]

“Thank you for everything you do”

Behind the governance and oversight duties of the board is a deep, spiritual, human purpose to what we do. For many of us, what happens at UUCF (and what happens because of UUCF) is at the top of our list of joys. Our UUCF extended family is a real source of happiness, inspiration and comfort. This special connection with a group of kindred spirits we adore feels most vibrant at this time of year. So it is with a special feeling of gratitude that we say thank you for everything you do here (and out there). If you are feeling stress this holiday season, if you are in need of […]

“Board Works” blog

“The vision must be followed by the venture. It is not enough to stare up the steps – we must step up the stairs.” – Vance Havner How am I going to live today in order to create the tomorrow to which I am committed? This is a big question. It speaks to what is most important. It speaks to how one sets priorities, even when there are dozens of things screaming for our attention. Without a clear sense of calling and focus, an organization will never reach its potential. And, being a large and healthy UU congregation, we have a lot of potential. Within the framework of the UUCF’s […]

“Fostering our highest ideals”

“I have one life and one chance to make it count for something. … My faith demands that I do whatever I can, wherever I am, whenever I can, for as long as I can, with whatever I have to try to make a difference.” – Jimmy Carter Life is finite. We give all that we have to something. The reason we give – whether of our time, our talents or our treasure – is to foster our highest ideals and aspirations. Done well, we use our gifts to transform ourselves, our community and our world. Giving can be a deeply spiritual practice. With this in mind, the UUCF Board […]

“Embracing our work on your behalf”

“Board Works” blog for Sep. 10, 2015. In March, President Barack Obama offered a few words to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the civil rights march at Selma, AL. Among these, he said: “What greater expression of faith in the American experiment than this; what greater form of patriotism is there than the belief that America is not yet finished, that we are strong enough to be self-critical, that each successive generation can look upon our imperfections and decide that it is in our power to remake this nation to more closely align with our highest ideals?” Striving for our highest ideals is ambitious. It takes effort … and bravery … and […]