Dear Friends, sharing this info about our sibling congregations in Seattle are closing per COVID-19 outbreak. Other congregations in high risk areas are doing similar, and a staff member just let me know the UUA has sent staff home to telecommute.
There are options for offering online ministry services. Having our ministers offer “sermons” from their desktops via Facebook live and Youtube for larger congregations, and for smaller groups a Zoom video is a great way to connect face-to-face, if from a distance. If your minister is on sabbatical, or if you are lay led, another option could be seeking a video to share of a sermon from another UU congregation and having a discussion in your facebook group (or also a Zoom session).
Whatever we choose, there are ways we can mindfully stay connected, even if we are not in the same building. Try a weekly “virtual coffee hour”…or “Happy Hour” 😉 Offer daily prayers and meditations. Begin book-study or theme-discernment worship groups and meet weekly on Zoom to discuss. Check in with one another via email, and text and phone calls. There are many kinds of “communication trees” that can keep us connected. And find ways to connect the unconnected (not everyone is online). Experiment!
Reach out and collaborate with colleagues at neighboring (or long distance) congregations and UU groups. Work together to create innovative online offerings.
My colleague Peter Bowden had some good suggestions for offering online content in his UU Planet group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/uuplanet/
CLF has resources on their website: https://www.questformeaning.org/ as well as innovative worship services.
Rev. Ian White Maher offers an online venue for spiritual discernment: The Seekers Table
And there are UU Talks that can be shared as well: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCd8Uxfh0CX63udofBF0M35A
Thoughts about Public Domain Music and incorporating singing/chanting/drumming.
Public Domain poetry and readings – – again, double check for copyright and permissions.
ALSO: Some congregations who regularly post quality videos of Sermons/Services:
We will continue to add more resources.
Be gentle with each other, and with yourself. We are called to be a people of love. Let’s Be Love.
Edited to include:
For those concerned about how to respond to the Corona Virus Outbreak and to learn what congregations and other groups are doing to maintain real connection virtually in times such as these, tune into the The VUU on Thursday, 11:00AM Eastern for this episode. Guests include the Revs Mykal Slack, Jessica Star Rockers and Suzanne Fast. They will also be joined by Aaron Payson and Madelyn Campbell from the UU Trauma Response Ministry.
“Sustaining Connection in a Coronavirus World – The VUU #290”