The following reports were submitted to the Board as a part of the preparation for the annual congregational meeting and the vote on the budget.  If you have questions about the contents, please contact the person who submitted the report.


Social Justice in Action Team

The Social Justice Action Team  will continue to work on the following:

  • Holding  team meetings the third Sunday of each month following the second service. 
  • Planning and coordinating efforts related to the local sanctuary church movement, including UUCS if the resolution passes.
  • Identifying recipients for the Share the Plate program, and distributing a portion of the weekly offering proceeds to the selected community groups. 
  • Helping with Purple DACA letter campaigns. 
  • Working on Health Care For All campaign
  • Attending rallies and marches, sometimes with Standing on the Side of Love banner
  • Collecting refugee donations. 
  • Organizing Cordon Road clean-up
  • Supporting community social justice committees as needed

– Submitted by Sarah Rohrs


Membership Team

The membership team will continue to:

  • Provide Hosts for all services, memorials, etc.
  • Be proactive in reaching out to visitors and current members.
  • Offer the UU101 and UU102 courses.
  • Use the Fellowship Pads as a means for making connections.
  • Organize Circle Suppers.
  • Provide volunteers for coffee service, as scheduled.
  • Have a good time.

– Submitted by Michael Pollard



The Communications Team will continue to:

  • Provide the monthly newsletter, The Chalice and The Flame. This includes electronic and hard-copy mail.
  • Provide email communication, especially the weekly updates that are a smaller version of the monthly newsletter.
  • Keep Facebook current with events and other items. This includes working towards 1,000 “likes”.
  • Maintain electronic mailing lists.
  • Keep the UUCS website current with events and news and service information.
  • Provide publicity in local media for special events such as Christmas Eve services and concerts.
  • Monitor the UUCS list contributions for appropriate content.

This year, in addition to the ongoing work listed above, the Communications Team facilitated moving the Podbean hosting (where sermon audio is stored) from a site generously donated and administered by Paul Parmley to a UUCS owned and administered site.  The Communications team has assumed financial responsibility for this site.   Many thanks to Paul for his years of generosity.

– Submitted by Vicki Cunningham


UU Compassionate Mind  Sangha

The UU Compassionate Mind Sangha will continue to offer two weekly gatherings on Wednesdays. Our ‘On the Way Home’ meditation is from 5:30 to 6:30 pm, with about 11 people attending this very simple and quiet opportunity for traditional Zen meditation. We then have a time for socializing from 6:30 p.m. till about 7:00 p.m. and our second offering from 7:00 to 9:00 pm, with about 18-20 folks attending (two meditation periods, silent walking, silent tea ceremony, a short Dharma talk, sharing and chanting). We also offer a short introduction to Zen meditation from 7:00 to 7:35. At the end of the evening, we clean up together and reset the space. This last month we’ve added the opportunity to study the Buddhist precepts and to learn to sew a rakusu (Buddhist vestment). 


In July we’ll have our annual Sangha dinner and in August our annual all day Zazenkai (meditation). 

– Submitted by Lee Ann Nail


Salem Covenant of Unitarian Universalist Pagans

Salem Covenant of Unitarian Universalist Pagans hold monthly business meetings and host celebrations around the Wheel of the Year.  Our group has created a Sacred Circle in Bateman Woods and continue to improve its setting.  We maintain an herb garden.  We hosted a Winter Solstice Service which brought 120+ participants to a special evening service. [Salem Covenant of Unitarian Universalist Pagans is treated as plural–I guess this is what’s called a collective noun]


We are currently working to renew the Welcoming Congregation status and will report on this and request support from the congregation at the May Congregational Meeting.  We renewed our membership, with Board of Directors support, in the national Covenant of Unitarian Universalist Pagans.  We have added names to our membership book. 


We will continue to be a voice and presence for pagans in the greater Salem community and stewards of our Mother Earth.  We will host rituals and educational opportunities for pagans and patrons in our various gatherings.

– Submitted by Arrhiannon Kirkpatrick


Life Lines Lay Ministry

The Life Lines Lay Ministry will continue to:

  • Focus on our mission: to offer confidential, compassionate caring and support to members and friends ofUUCS during times of need.
  • Meet on the first Saturday morning of each month.
  • Maintain the Life Lines brochure, which is included in the Welcome Packet given to visitors.
  • Maintain the Life Lines Handbook.
  • Join in the Compassionate Care Circle after each service on the second Sunday of the month.
  • Provide volunteers for the Welcome Table
  • Provide volunteers for coffee service, as scheduled.


Life Lines will be looking for new members for the coming year.

– Submitted by Karen Piter



The UUCS Microfinance Project is based on the Unitarian Universalist principles that “we covenant to affirm and promote … justice, equity and compassion in human relations” and having a “world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all.”  The basic idea: Make small loans to people living on the edge, so they can increase their earning power, escape poverty, and make a better living for their families. Often, poor people are not able to borrow money to buy small equipment items or materials necessary for their businesses.  Banks are few in rural areas. The UUCS microfinance project is trying to help people that banks cannot or will not help.   Through UUCS donations, we establish permanent revolving loan funds administered by credible non-for-profit organizations so our funds continue to benefit poor families for many years as loans are repaid and then loaned again.

Thanks to the generosity of our UUCS congregation, we raised $4,400 in October from Share the Plate, direct contributions, and sales of jewelry and other items from Africa and Nicaragua! 


Ron Hockley with the NEO Fund spoke to our congregation at the October 9, 2016, services on how The NEO Fund learned what was most effective in helping those in need.  He told how, in the beginning, they gave spare coins and even beanie baby dolls before they realized that, while well intentioned, this approach does not address the needs of people who are struggling to survive.  Using local people who work closely with the poor, they identified the importance of providing people with the means to earn a sustainable living and lift their families out of poverty.  Check out the NEO Fund’s website to learn more about how they have helped individuals:


We used the amount we raised in October to send $4000 to The NEO Fund for micro-lending to the poor living near the dumps in Nicaragua.  $400 was given to IMANI to help women farm crops to yield food and a profit to be applied for healthcare and schooling.  For more information on IMANI go to


The UUCS Microfinance Committee is in the beginning stages of planning a trip to Nicaragua to visit people we are helping through our project.   We are considering going in 2018.  If you’re interested in joining us, please contact

– Submitted by Ann Hanus


Chalice Circle Players

The Chalice Circle Players has no formal plans for the coming year. Typically, what happens is that we are called upon by Rev. Rick or  Intern Minister Monica to perform a skit or a reading, etc. to augment a particular service, such as the sexual harassment skit we offered in April. We are always ready and eager to help in whatever way we can. Sometimes that involves having props, costumes or scripts, so we do need a bit of money in the budget.  Thank you.

– Submitted by Gloria Holland

Return to 2017 Annual Meeting page