PWR Newsletter – January 2022 - Archived

“PWR Assembly-All Aboard!” , PWR & UUA News, and more!
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Pacific Western Region
Newsletter • January 2022
PWR Staff Sarah Gibb Millspaugh, Melissa James, Amanda Radak, Summer Albayati, and Carlton Smith pose outside the fabulous Regional Assembly hotel in November.
Pacific Western Regional Assembly-All Aboard!
by Rev. Carlton E. Smith
PWR Lead

Holiday Greetings, Unitarian Universalists of the Pacific Western Region!

I hope this newsletter finds you in the middle of a restorative holiday break, appreciative of the blessings of 2021 and open to the gifts that lie ahead in 2022.

As the year dwindles down to its last few days, our attention turns to the future. For those of us on your Regional staff, that means the Pacific Western Regional Assembly 2022, happening online and on-site along San Diego’s Mission Bay, February 4th-6th. We invite you to join us!

It will feel so good to be together in-person and online as we go deeper into this new year. The PW Regional Assembly is the first of our UUA’s multi-platform events, a glimpse at what the UUA General Assembly will be like in June. Our featured speaker for Opening Gathering Friday, January 4 is UUA President Rev. Dr. Susan Frederick-Gray. All of our workshops will be available online before, during, and after the event, with opportunities to engage in live conversation with presenters on Saturday, February 5.

We’ll be creating powerful worship together and offering many opportunities for making personal connections with UUs from other congregations in the West. With small identity/interest groups, discussion platforms, and social times, “conference magic” can happen as we make friends, live our values, and deepen our faith.

This will be the Pacific Western Region’s third Regional Assembly, but the first since two of the districts within it voted to merge and one district authorized its dissolution, all en route to PWR becoming a legal entity itself. We are grateful for the ways that faithful district leaders have drawn closer to one another and collaborated with PWR and UUA staff to arrive at this point. We will highlight the histories of the districts and the ongoing work of the Regional Transitions Team while we are together.

To ministers and other religious professionals attending the UUMA CENTER Institute in San Diego either virtually or in-person in San Diego January 31-February 4: Take advantage of the additional days of connection with other UUs, either virtually or in-person!

The last day to register for in-person attendance is January 4, and the last day for online registration is January 23.

In consultation with lay leaders earlier in 2021, we chose “Reflect, Rejoice, Renew” as our theme. We have designed this event to be one where we look back to what the region has been, celebrate the good that is happening in our “community of communities,” and invite new ideas and new ways of being together organizationally and otherwise.

In faith,

***Please note: The UUA will be closed from Saturday, December 18th through Sunday, January 2nd. Thank you so much for honoring your hardworking staff’s need for rest and renewal. In the event of an emergency, please call or text (720)-663-7693.

In this Issue

PWR Assembly-All Aboard!!
PWR & UUA News
Youth & Emerging Adult News
Pacific Central News
Pacific Northwest News
InSpirit Update

PWR Links
Calendar and Events
Staff Contacts
Job Postings
Youth Ministries
RE Trainings

PWR Lead
Carlton Elliott Smith

PWR Program Staff
Summer Albayati
Holiday Greetings from Your PWR Staff

As 2021 comes to an end we, the Pacific Western Region Congregational Life Staff team, wish you, your congregation, and your families hope, joy, and love. See more of our holiday greetings (which may be shared with your congregation) here.
Pacific Western Regional Assembly 2022 Updates

RA “Shorts”
Regional Assembly calls for Shorts. Selected short videos will be made available to all who participate in Regional Assembly 2022. Some may be used in RA programming, some will be available for viewing leading into the weekend and some will be available for participants to use in a future worship service.

  • Natural beauty near your home, or a short nature trail
  • A great congregational program to share with others.
  • A song or Story for All ages that you have the rights to play & share
  • Maybe you want to update us on a bit of cluster news.
  • A chalice lighting – reading & lighting

Here is a great format for just that kind of communication. We are not seeking commercial submissions. Professional film crews are not needed. Cell phone or Zoom videos are often very good. Regional Assembly is our joint gathering-won’t you contribute? Details and submissions.

RA Workshops
We are excited to announce that Regional Assembly 2022 will have a slate of incredible on-demand workshops available to all participants on the Whova app. Topics include theology, stewardship, social justice, spirituality, and leadership. Check out some of our workshop offerings:

  • “Unlocking the Power of Covenant” presented by the Article 2 Commission on Appraisal
  • “Covenantal Funding for Multi-Platform Church: Envisioning the Future in a Time of Uncertainty” with Stewardship for Us
  • “Companioning Children in Play”, a workshop on equipping leaders to meet the emerging demands of religious education and family ministry with Annie Scott, CRE and Dr. Melissa James
  • “So You Want to be a UU Minister? The Ever Evolving Credentialing Process Demystified” with Rev. Dr. Jonipher Kwong

Already excited? Us, too! Add to that list workshops from the Salaam Network, UURISE, congregational leaders and more! You can take your experience deeper with many of our workshop presenters will be available during a Question and Answer session on Saturday of assembly! Register today to make sure you get access!

Call for RA Chaplains
Now accepting applications for volunteer chaplains and Right Relations Team members for Regional Assembly 2022.

Are you trained in chaplaincy and have a desire to serve our region? Consider applying to be a Regional Assembly Chaplain or member of the Regional Assembly Right Relations Team! You can find out more about the Chaplain Job Description here. Or the Right Relations Job Description here. Apply by January 5th by filling out this form.

For more information, contact Melissa James ( or Annie Scott (

RA Sunday Morning Worship
This worship is an embodied, multi-generational service focusing on unity and interdependence. It is a testimony, embracing the power and possibility of regionalization — that is, combining resources and congregations to better and more equitably serve our “community of communities” stretching from Western Nebraska through Alaska and down to Hawaii. Told in four voices, this service is built upon a parable of four rivers converging as they bring nutrients and gifts to a life-giving flow much larger than each of them. It is a “both/and” story of interweaving threads to create a new tapestry of relationships and a new culture. It is a story that mirrors Unitarian Universalism, a movement founded through the combining of two strong religious traditions, from which a strong new entity emerged. Would your congregation like to use this worship as your own? Materials list and video links will be made available in January. Watch this space for details.

Leading from the Heart 2022

In this three-part series for budding and experienced leaders, you will ground yourself in your own spiritual soil, acknowledge our shard roots, discern fruits of our faith, find abundance in serving, and preserve seeds to ensure the harvest of leadership for years to come. March-May, Details and Registration.
UUA Board Meetings and Open Houses
Open Houses
The Board will, once again, hold open houses on the 2nd Tuesday of each month.

  • Tuesday, January 11, 2022; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.
  • Tuesday, February 8, 2022; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.
  • Tuesday, March 8, 2022; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.
  • Tuesday, April 12, 2022; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.
  • Tuesday, May 10, 2022; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.
  • Tuesday, June 14, 2022; 4pm PT/ 5pm MT / 6pm CT/ 7pm ET. Pre-register.

Board Meetings
The Board meets monthly. Here are the dates/times for each meeting. Please note that a registration link for the meetings will be available on this page in advance of each meeting.

  • Friday, January 21—Saturday, January 22, 2022; Schedule TBD
  • Monday, February 14, 2022; 4:00pm PT / 5:00pm MT / 6:00pm CT / 7:00pm ET
  • Monday, March 14, 2022; 4:00pm PT / 5:00pm MT / 6:00pm CT / 7:00pm ET
  • Friday, April 22—Saturday, April 23, 2022; Schedule TBD
  • Monday, May 9, 2022; 4:00pm PT / 5:00pm MT / 6:00pm CT / 7:00pm ET
Stewardship Lunch and Share

Stewardship Lunch and Share for stewardship and fundraising lay leaders.
Join PWR staff and congregational leaders from around the region for conversation and sharing about stewardship, generosity, and fundraising. Each gathering will include brief presentations and plenty of time to bring your questions and ideas to one another.
12:00pm to 1:00pm Pacific on the 2nd Friday of the month.

January 14th Topic: The Impact of the Pandemic on Giving Trends
Register for upcoming lunch and shares here.

Taproot: A National BIPOC Space

The work of spiritual community is complicated in the 21st century. The need for faithful leadership that is grounded and resilient is imperative. This is all the more true for leaders within our communities and congregations who are Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPoC). All too aware of this need, Congregational Life is excited to explore and co-create a network with congregational leaders that support them in this time in emergent ways through Taproot: A National BIPOC Space. BIPoC Leaders rooted in the Unitarian Universalist congregations are invited to take part in this monthly, virtual gathering.

Second Thursday of the month. ***PLEASE NOTE NEW TIME*** Next meeting February 10th at 8p ET/7p CT/6p MT/5p PT. Details and registration at the UUA website.

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