Thursday, May 02, 2013

Some more views on the Board/Administration thing....

You may not have seen these blogs;

Rev. Sarah Stewart, a member of the UUA Board writes:


Unitarian Universalists should not let any of us, the administration or the board, off the hook for accomplishing our ends, including the end of growth. Our faith can serve more people. It can thrive in the 21st century. We believe so; the administration believes so; our congregations and their leaders believe so. Demand this task of us, your leaders. It is what you elected us to do.

Tim Atkins, who does social media for the CLF, writes

:I just keep coming back to this: How much of this board vs. president conflict is actually relevant in our congregations vs. folks saying it’s important.  How much of this is relevant to the folks serving at the greeting table in my congregation vs. how much of this is relevant to the smallish “Elite UU Leaders” circle?

1 comment:

Jennifer Crawford said...

Tim, I’m afraid it’s relevant in that it makes people like me leave UUism. I understand that in the board’s mind it is promoting growth, but I think that its harshness mostly promotes shrinkage. No amount of increased emphasis on accountability is going to make people feel good about being UU. Not all worthwhile ends are quantifiable. I do think that most church members love their congregations, but the endless recriminations of the leadership can be a major turn off. Personally, I thought UUism was the greatest thing since sliced bread until I went to seminary. Once I’d gotten a close up view of how dysfunctional and destructive denominational politics could be, I no longer felt morally comfortable about promoting UUism in the world. I still wish to promote respect for the inherent worth and dignity of every person, but I no longer think that promoting the UUA is a good way to do that.

I should probably make clear that I left a while ago, so the people who are currently on the board were not on it then. But when I read the comments of board members on this blog, I see some similar patterns in terms of the board thinking that by enforcing its will on others, it can fix the UUA. Growth doesn’t happen at the board level. It happens, when it happens, because people find their congregations to be loving, nurturing places that help them find ways to be constructive in the world. No one has ever joined a church in order to help the church achieve its growth goals. Increased marketing doesn’t help. Increased accountability doesn’t help. What helps is the unquantifiable feeling that the church is a positive community that makes the world a better place and is therefore worth supporting in the world.

I’ll close by simply saying that Tom’s analysis in his May 3rd blog post, entitled “The wrong question for our times” feels extremely accurate and to the point to me.