If you attended our AGM last spring, you might remembering hearing about a new way of doing Sunday services … and yet, this fall services look very familiar — what’s happening?

We’ve followed the lead of several other Unitarian Universalist congregations and disbanded our Sunday Services committee. This is in part a response to the change to Rev. Karen’s hours (she will now be with us for 20 Sundays instead of 26-28 Sundays per year) and in part a result of a gradual shift in how people volunteer and changes in what’s needed to organize Sunday services.

Sunday Services chairs and committee members served us well and faithfully for many years — a big thank you to everyone who has been on the committee over the decades. You know who you are and your contributions were so important!!

We have three goals for the changes:

1. To get more people involved in the creative part of making services while reducing the amount of administrative work for volunteers;
2. To get more input on service ideas and topics from a wider range of Saskatoon Unitarians; and
3. To reduce the coordination and planning end of things, so that the workload for the Chair (now called the Sunday Services coordinator) is reasonable.


How it works:

Three or four times a year we will have a “Sunday Services Extravaganza” where we plan out the services for the next two or three months. Service leaders are present and get to choose the service that interest them, as well as having input on upcoming topics from Rev. Karen. Administrative coordination takes place at the meeting, cutting down on all those emails. Our Singing Coordinator, Kathryn, is present, so she hears what’s happening with each service and can connect in person with Service Leaders.
We have hired a Sunday Services Assistant — we have had one in the past, but this time the job description is a little different: the SSA is like a project manager, watching the progress of each service, reminding folks of deadlines, creating the Powerpoint file (the slides) and connecting Service Leaders to resource people as needed. (In the next email we will introduce our new Sunday Services Assistant, Crystal Ironside, and say more about her role.)

Good news: the July extravaganza was well attended and almost all the September and October services were planned at that meeting! Plus we had yummy meringues with fruit topping and ice cream, and Kathryn Green and Rev. Karen both gave mini skill-building workshops for Service Leaders.

There are two things we need from you to make this work …

  1. If you want to create a service, you are invited to attend one of the extravaganza planning meetings (otherwise, we don’t actually cut down on emails or meetings.)
  2. We need Service Leaders to commit to leading three services a year, which means attending three service leader extravaganzas. We aren’t asking you to do three services from scratch — you can volunteer for a mix of services based on your own ideas and the services organized by Rev. Karen. Important: this is how we will cover the additional lay-led services this year!

What do you think? Do you have an idea for a service? Would you like to share your music with us? Do you want to join our un-committee planning meeting extravaganza and have a say in what happens on Sundays? Contact Liz James and she will invite you to an upcoming meeting!

Contact any of us to find out more about what’s happening …

Liz James, Sunday Services Coordinator

Kathryn Green, Singing Coordinator (song leaders, accompanists and other musicians)
Rev. Karen Fraser Gitlitz, Minister karen@ucsaskatoon.org

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