In the last year, UUFM has had a sudden uptick in membership. Currently, more than a quarter of our membership is new in the last year. That’s a tremendous amount of change for everyone.
This congregation does well with change. When we’ve experimented with how we worship and with how we organize ourselves, people have been positive and willing to go along. Members and friends have consistently looked for the good in what happens.
Welcoming so many people in such a short time, though, would challenge any group, so it might help for us to be thoughtful about what we are doing. It takes a lot more than the greeters, the Membership Committee, and me to make everyone feel welcome and a part of things.
If you’ve been around for awhile, here are a few suggestions to help us better integrate our new members:
- If you see someone you don’t know, introduce yourself. Learn about our new members–they are all fascinating people. You’ll enjoy getting to know them.
- If you are responsible for something around the fellowship, ask new people to help out. If you want to find someone with particular interests, ask our administrator Sue or me or a Board member about who you might connect with. We’ll happily provide information about who has expressed interest in your area.
- Help us make space in the sanctuary by sitting closer to the front.
- Help us make space in the parking lot. If you are able to safely cross the street, park in the Greenhouse lot. Otherwise, be sure that as you park, you not leave a lot of extra space between cars, unless you need it. And, as our new Visitor Parking spaces are designated, please respect them.
- Recognize that with new people, our congregation changes and evolves. Approach the changes with curiosity.
And if you’re one of those new in the last year, or even in recent years, here are some recommendations:
- Get to know some of our long-term members. They’re pretty fascinating, too.
- Join a Chalice Circle. It’s a once a month commitment that provides support and deeper thinking about our monthly theme. Contact me, Jessica Sievers, Jane Pelletier, or Susan Adamchak for more information.
- Find a way to get involved. If you haven’t completed a volunteer service sheet (categories of Beacon / Safe Haven /Incubator / Builder), then please do. You can get one from administrator Sue or from me. Try different things. And if there’s something you want to do, step forward.
- Show up. The more we see you, the more we’ll get to know you and you us. It’s a great UU adventure to be on. We are glad you are here.