From Our Board
Editor Albany UU | Jan 09, 2020



Ever since I signed our Albany UU membership book over 10 years ago, and even before that – certainly part of the reason I joined – I have been impressed with the tremendous talents and accomplishments of the people I have met here. I stand somewhat in awe of their energy and skills, which they have used both within our UU activities and outside in the larger regional and world communities. Surely, members of other congregations are also talented, but we of the UU, more than most, tend to be free-thinkers who are individually self-motivated. Stereotype: “At UU, just Find Your Thing, and Do It!” Although we have many active teams and committees here, we seem to be a collection of autonomous individuals. For myself, even in smaller groups, I have found discussions and committee work to be challenging, not something my career in a subspecialty medical practice prepared me for. Sharing diverse and even contradictory viewpoints in a group can be difficult. Certainly, there is no Group-Think here. Despite our shared principles and covenants, reaching agreement on cohesive group action can be challenging.

               That’s where our Albany UU governance structure comes in. The Board of Trustees provides leadership and oversees the Ministries & Operation Team, but we cannot do this in a vacuum. As Patti Jo Newell has reminded us in earlier messages, the whole congregation must be the foundation, the source of our Mission. The challenge is for the Board to discern the congregation’s vision for the future, and distill that into policy. Maybe some of this discernment can come, bit by bit, through coffee-hour conversations and discussions in group activities; but it won’t come by osmosis or my trying to sense your pheromones in the air!

               That’s why it will be so helpful if you can attend our WORLD CAFÉ on January 12, and participate as fully as possible. Help us know your vision, your dreams, your ideas for where Albany UU should or shouldn’t go. Set your mind-function selector switch on “Brainstorming: creative thinking, no-holds-barred discussion, open questions with a million possible answers.” This will be fun, because we DO NOT KNOW what the outcome will be. That’s the point. Let’s find out who we are.

We really do hope to see AND hear you there!

Fred Eames