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 TopClara Barton &
Massachusetts Bay Districts
of Unitarian Universalist Congregations

NEWSLETTER: January 2014
It's Time to Certify!
The online system for annual certification of membership for UUA congregations is now open. Deadline is Mon., Feb. 3 at 5 p.m. PT. Learn more and review the certification process online, or contact data_services@uua.org with questions.
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Upcoming Programs

The following programs can also all be found on the 
CBD-MBD Calendar.

Learning Congregation Workshops
January 11: Growing Better Religion with Rev. Tandi Rogers
March 1: Building a Vocal Community (FULL) with Dr. Ysaye Barnwell

March 22: Speaking of Class with Meck Groot 


May 17: Sermon Writing for Lay Preachers with Rev. Sue Phillips    


May 31 and June 7: New Board Member Orientations with Douglas Zelinski   


Lifespan Faith Formation and Religious Education
Our Whole Lives Facilitator Trainings
Grades 7 to 9 and 10 to 12
Grades K to 1 and 4 to 6
For Religious Professionals
February 12: DRE/Ministers Collegial Conversation: Full Week Faith with Karen Bellavance-Grace and John Gibb Millspaugh
April 2: Effective Staff Supervision in Religious Organizations with Rev. Susan Beaumont

Annual Events: Hold Dates!
April 26: Freely Gathered - Third Annual Combined Districts Assembly

May 10: Renewing Our Commitment to Multicultural Ministries - Annual G.R.A.C.E. Team Summit
Bringing Faith Home
 Karen Bellavance-Grace
by Karen Bellavance-Grace,
Director of Faith Formation 

"And if this is your final destination, Welcome Home! You're here!"


Thus spoke the cheeky Southwest Airlines flight attendant some years ago when I touched down at Bradley International Airport in Hartford, CT. It was true and not true. Bradley is my home airport, the place I go to be transported to the places I want to go, and the place I count on to carry me back towards home. But it is not home. It is not my destination. 

I was reminded of this recently by Rev. Robin Bartlett, who noted that church, also, is not a destination. It is a place we go to be transformed, to close the gap between what we profess to believe and how we live and act in our daily lives. So it is with our ministries of faith formation. They begin with our children's experiences of Sunday School, but our ministry cannot stop there anymore than our travel can stop at gate 4E at the airport. We've got to bring it the rest of the way home. 


"How are you helping families bring our faith home?"  I've asked this question myself over the last year while working on my Fahs Fellowship project, Full Week Faith. I've heard echoes of this question in Facebook groups of religious professionals, on blogs, in newsletter columns, and in committee meetings. It's exciting to know that people are really engaging the question and wanting to share their ideas. 


It's exciting to know that there is real desire from people of all ages to connect with their faith all week long, and not just on Sunday mornings. Some people want physical reminders of their faith around them at home, and virtual reminders showing up on their Facebook and Twitter feeds. Some crave a mid-week connection to their faith because Sunday mornings just don't work for them -- they cannot make it to worship because of work or sports or various other obligations. Converts to our faith relish opportunities to learn more about us, but in ways less formal than traditional Adult R.E. classes.


Increasingly, our religious professionals are asking themselves and one another, "How are you helping families bring our faith home?" Out of their collective wisdom, new and beautiful experiments are already flowing.


Church is our Spirit's home; the place we go to be

transformed, to be more like the people we aspire to be in the world. It's the place we count on to carry our soul back towards home. But it is not home. It is not our destination, any more than Gate 4E at Bradley. We all must live out in the tired, hungry, broken down, bruised and snowy old world. If we in the church are the gatekeepers, then how do we help our people take what they need home? What goodness shall we stow in their carry-on luggage so they can go out and bless this world?  

                                       In Faith, Karen     

DRE/ Ministers Collegial Conversation
Karen Bellavance-Grace

with Karen Bellavance-Grace and Rev. John Millspaugh

February 12, 2014 - 10 AM to 3 PM
Join this collegial conversation for DREs and Ministers about bringing our faith home. [DETAILS]  


REGISTER NOW! - Deadline: February 7    


Additional Resources
2013 Fahs Fellowships
The Fahs Fellows are global thinkers and curriculum  innovators in faith development with an important message to share. See the 2013 Fahs Fellowship presentations, including our own Karen Bellavance-Grace's "Fahs Talk" on Full Week Faith.

Full Week Faith

Full Week Faith is the result of Karen's year exploring as the Fahs Fellow for Innovation in Multigenerational Faith Formation. Explore the resources she shares on the Full Week Faith website. The activity card below offers a sample of the website's contents.  

Full Week Faith Sample Activity Card