Pocatello Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
Religious / Spiritual Exploration
Welcome. We hope you and your family will join us for the upcoming events.
Every Sunday 4:00 - 5:30 Our Sunday Service alternates with our Exploration Sunday
See Our Newsletter for more Information
Select the following link to see the online version of our latest newsletter in pdf format (<500K) www.pocatellouu.org/images/newsletter.pdf
More ways to stay informed
Printed Newsletter: If you are interested in learning more about PUUF, you can get our monthly newsletter, containing information about upcoming events as well as articles by our members. Come to our next Service, or e-mail the PUUF office at firstname.lastname@example.org to ask to receive the newsletter.
To submit information for publication, e-mail email@example.com or call Irene. The deadline is always the 25th of the month.
Welcoming Congregation Committee
PUUF is NOW a Welcoming Congregation!! After several years of hard work, PUUF was officially recognized as a W.C. in late August 2011.
To promote ongoing growth in this area, PUUF has scheduled a Living the Welcoming Congregation Workshop for Sat. March 17th, 2012 1-4. Entitled Transgender, Gender, and Identity, this informative workshop will be presented by Emilie Jackson-Edney from Boise. The public is invited. No reservations needed.
Read below for details on our journey:
Evidence points to churches as the most anti-homosexual institutions in America, and much of the justification used to promote anti-homosexual feelings, legislation, and violence is couched in "religious" language. It is difficult for Bisexual, Gay, Lesbian, and Transgendered (BGLT) people to feel safe bringing their whole selves into churches. Because the first principle of Unitarian Universalism recognizes "the inherent worth and dignity of every person," the Pocatello UU Fellowship (PUUF) welcomes all, and in fact, we state this at the beginning of each service. However, official recognition as a Welcoming Congregation(WC)allows us to open our fellowship as a safe space for BGLT persons, to take positions on oppression in our larger communities, and to accomplish outreach.
The WC educational program developed by the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Office of BGLT Concerns is helping members and friends of PUUF to examine our own biases and move toward new and more inclusive attitudes and behaviors.
In order to be formally recognized as a Welcoming Congregation, we must complete specific steps in the areas of education, congregational life, and community outreach. These action steps include but are not limited to the following:
Offer a congregation-wide series from the WC program.
Form a WC committee that offers programs and monitors progress. Use inclusive language and content as a regular part of our worship services. Adjust our bylaws to recognize our affirmation of BGLT persons and nondiscrimination in all aspects of congregational life.
Celebrate and affirm BGLT issues and history. Advertise in local media that reaches the BGLT Community. Participate in and support efforts to create justice, freedom, and equality for BGLT people in the larger society.
PUUF Action Steps to Date
As part of our ongoing efforts to become a Welcoming Congregation, we have taken the following steps:
In April of 2009, PUUF held a retreat facilitated by Michael Corrigan of the UU Church of Greely, CO. Michael provided members of the PUUF congregation a wealth of information about becoming an official WC and thoughtfully addressed a number of questions and concerns raised by the retreat participants.
A task force of three volunteered to explore the process further and to acquire a congregation-wide agreement to proceed. To that end, an educational pamphlet was developed and sent to all PUUF members and friends with an invitation to attend a WC workshop facilitated by Reverend Lyn Cameron of the Idaho Falls UU Fellowship.
During the 2009 Annual Meeting of PUUF, the congregation voted to initiate efforts to be recognized by the UUA as an official WC. A committee of five was formed to plan and organize WC events.
A WC "kick-off" workshop was held on Nov. 1st, 2009 with 14 individuals in attendance. The workshop, facilitated by Rev. Lyn Cameron, focused on our attitudes toward BGLT people. A worship service immediately followed the workshop where Rev. Cameron's sermon entitled "The Courage to Emerge", celebrated the National Day of Coming Out.
In Dec. of 2009, a WC questionnaire was sent to all members of the congregation. The questionnaire, acquired from the WC Handbook, gaged the way we feel about BGLT people. Completed questionnaires were received from 31 members and the results suggest that we are generally comfortable around and accepting of BGLT people.
In Jan. of 2010, the WC committee organized a panel discussion. The panel members included H. Wayne Schow who lost a son to AIDS, Emilie Jackson-Edney, who is trangendered, and Derrick Capson who coordinates the local Genesis Project. From diverse perspectives, they shared their personal experiences and hopes for the future. Approximately 25 members and friends attended the discussion.
During the first worship service in April of 2010, the Old Town Actors Studio presented a selection of the play, The Laramie Project: 10 Years Later.
In May of 2010, a workshop with visiting minister Todd Strickland addressed how individuals and congregations can be allies to the GBLT community.
In Oct. of 2010 several PUUF members participated in a gay rights march in Ogden, UT.
In Jan. of 2011 consulting minister Lora Brandis delivered a "Welcome Service" to assist the fellowship in welcoming people of different stripes and to end hate, prejudice and discrimination in our community.
In Jan. of 2011 consulting minister Lora Brandis facilitated a workshop on racism, religion and homosexuality.
In Feb. of 2011 Adult Religious Exploration (ARE) presented 8: The Mormon Proposition.
In Feb. 0f 2011, a sizable contingent of PUUF members attended the full production of the Laramie Project. Several PUUFers helped to organize 2Great4hate, a new organization with a mission to promote love and acceptance throughout our community.
In Feb. of 2011, PUUF presented Muriel Roberts with the "Love Award" for standing on the side of love and justice.
In March of 2011, a large number of PUUF members and friends participated in a 2Great4hate rally in Pocatello to support a state law which would include the GBLT community for nondiscrimination (SB 1033).
Upon completion of the recommended steps, a vote was put before the PUUF membership in affirmation of our commitment to becoming a Welcoming Congregation. The steps taken and our vote were communicated to the UUA for official recognition in May 2011.
SAVE THE DATES
June 19-23, 2013 UUA GENERAL ASSEMBLY Louisville, Kentucky A REALLY BIG DEAL
TBA, 2014 MDD Conference Location To Be Announced See MDD Conference link on left Panel of this page.
Copyright 2006, Pocatello Unitarian Universalist Fellowship