How we came to create congregationally approved task forces
In 2011, as part of a "Leap of Faith " consultation with our neighboring church in Rochester NY, the leaders of our social action program reviewed the ways we organize social action and hold ourselves accountable for sustainable and effective priorities in social action. We decided at that time that we wanted issue-focused social action task forces to be accountable to the congregation once a year at the annual meeting. Being accountable meant offering a written annual report with a verbal update or expansion at the meeting. The report was to outline how the task force had tried to accomplish its goals during the past year in three different areas --- education, service, and advocacy for change. In addition, at least four church members or pledging friends needed to attach their names to the report as committed to the goals of the task force for the year ahead.
In response to this annual accountability, the congregation is asked to vote their endorsement to each reporting group as a "task force of West Shore Church" for the year ahead. This endorsement means that they can use the name of the church in the publicity and advocacy and that they have priority for announcements, bulletin board space, and staff support above groups not so recognized.
West Shores Task Forces
West Shore Unitarian Universalist Church is committed to "serving needs greater than our own." In order to marshall our resources most effectively, the congregation votes on task forces which receive the church's priority of time, energy, and publicity efforts. Currently, the church approved these five task forces at the 2015 Annual Meeting.
FACT: Anti-Fracking Group
West Shore FaCT is part of a larger group, FaCT Ohio: Faith Communities Together for a Sustainable Future. FaCT’s participants come from more than 40 faith communities from 16 counties in Ohio and 3 in West Virginia. Our community includes Catholic, Protestant, and Jewish congregations, along with members of more than ten other faith traditions. We are working together to protect our natural environment through education, outreach, collaborative efforts, and public actions. Come and join us in confronting the problems that fossil fuel extraction causes for communities and families in rural, suburban, and urban areas. We explore sustainable living in many ways to protect the natural environment in which we all live. West Shore FaCT meets monthly at West Shore Unitarian Universalist Church on the second and fourth Sundays at 12:15 p.m. Visit our website. Contact: Linda New, Newlinn09@gmail.com
The Imagine Peace Group provides a place to discuss and act on concerns about peace or the lack of peace in the world, to share our feelings and reactions to world events and allows individuals to work toward achieving internal and external peace. The Imagine Peace Group promotes awareness of the costs of war and examines U.S. policy regarding the military industrial complex. Imagine Peace promotes peace by showing films, sponsoring speakers and providing written informational material to the congregation and the community. Meets the third Wednesday of the month at 7pm. Contact: Jean Kosmac: email@example.com
The Inclusivity Ministry Team provides programs and actions that educate, nurture empathy and transform perceptions to create an anti-racist, anti-oppressive, multicultural congregation and broader society. Meets the third Tuesday of the month, 7:30 p.m. Contact: Daniel Ang: firstname.lastname@example.org or Bridget Walland: email@example.com
Queer & Allies Group (Q&A): Lesbian, Gay, Bi-Sexual, Transgender and Queer Concerns at WSUUC
“We affirm the inherent worth and dignity of all persons,” states our first Principle as Unitarian Universalists, and so it goes without saying that lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender and queer persons are not only welcome at West Shore, but expected to participate fully in all church activities. In the late 1980’s, West Shore voted to become a “Welcoming Congregation” which means that the church took seriously its commitment to educate its members on LGBTQ justice concerns, and serve as active advocates for, and with, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. We advocated for marriage equality before it became a reality, celebrated the victory, and support all new efforts to achieve LGBTQ equality.
West Shore's Q&A group is composed of LGBTQ people and their Allies who meet monthly for mutual support and political strategy. All are welcome to attend the monthly meetings. Check the current issue of the newsletter, Shorelines, the order of service on Sunday, the online church calendar, or call the church office at 440-333-2255. West Shore members routinely join other UU’s from northeast Ohio in marching downtown in the annual Pride Parade in June. Meets the third Friday of the month.
West Shore and Allies Against Human Trafficking (WAAHT) "Educate to Eradicate" Human Trafficking
Our mission is to "Educate to Eradicate" human trafficking. Human Trafficking is the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for a commercial sex act or labor or services, through force, fraud or coercion. This crime is on the rise locally, and world-wide, and is perpetrated principally on the young and the helpless.
We appreciate your interest in learning more about this subject, and hope that you will find opportunities to take action and to share information with others. If you wish to be removed from this email list, please send an email message requesting to be dropped to firstname.lastname@example.org Everyone is invited to join us to discuss, plan and dream of a world devoid of human trafficking and the exploitation of women and children. Meets the third Wednesday of the month, 7:00 p.m.