Rev. Samantha: Restorative Congregations Update

Hello Dear Ones!

Hello UUCT!


I am writing to you to offer you a celebration and an update on your Restorative Congregations Process work with me.


Last year, our work together included a Spirituality of Conflict course, congregational surveys about the impacts of ministry, workshops on restorative practices, Sunday services, and a special workshop for your Board at the end of the year to understand the history of conflict and misconduct at UUCT. You were even recognized for your innovative efforts at healing and accountability for congregations who have experienced clergy misconduct in their past – I am in awe of your willingness to experiment and risk together with me. 


Through diligent work over the summer, you and your Board raised several thousand dollars – through pledges and a Faithify campaign – to continue our work til December 2023. You have also submitted a grant to the UU Funding Panel (to be decided on in December) to help fund our work in 2024. Support from a wider community inspired by this effort is continuing to sustain our work together – I am so moved by it all. 


Through this momentum and support, we continue to build on what we began last year:

  • Direct support for your Board and minister in understanding and engaging the history of clergy and lay leader misconduct and its impact on the congregation at large
  • Coaching for individuals wanting to tend their relationships with one another in the congregation, especially in areas where there has historically been conflict
  • Congregational learning and worship opportunities in Winter and Spring of 2024
  • An upcoming invitation to engage a mid-sized group of congregants in a integration and resilience building process about the congregation’s history and their own stories and roles within it 

This work is stewarded by your Board and a “Process Design Team” that works with me to offer feedback, reflections, and support. Your Process Team includes Rev. Bethany, Pastor Jamili, EJ Millstone, Frank Valdes, Beth Britton, and Wendy Gordon Weeks. I am thankful to their collective wisdom! 


I look forward to updating you as we continue our work together! UUCT members and friends are always welcome to email me or set up time to talk with me one-to-one.


With care,

~ Samantha