Contact the Pastoral Care Team!
Confidential voicemail: 204-900-0150 or email: pastoralcare@cuc.ca

The CUC’s Pastoral Care Team for Young Adults offers flexible and accessible care and support that young adults can access anywhere, whether or not they are currently connected to a congregation or minister. Our three Pastoral Care Team members are ministers with experience providing care and supportive listening, with a special interest in supporting young adults through the many ups and downs of life. Pastoral care can be provided by phone, through Zoom video, or by text.

Read on to learn more about our young adult pastoral care program.

What is Pastoral Care?

Pastoral care is the way we offer support and compassion to each other in community, and it’s a wonderful part of Unitarian Universalist ministry. The Pastoral Care Team offers one type of pastoral care: supportive listening.

Our goal is to listen and affirm, to help you come up with your own solutions and strategies for moving forward, instead of offering specific advice. Pastoral care isn’t counselling or therapy but is care focused on your emotional and spiritual wellbeing. The Pastoral Care Team will be glad to hear from you, whether you are going through a tough time, want to share good news, or need some support with discernment and decision making.

PCT members were chosen for their passion, their kind and caring personalities, and their comfort dealing with a wide range of issues. They welcome requests from people of all identities and backgrounds. This service is designed for young adults, but no one will ask your age. If you identify as a young adult, you are welcome to contact the Pastoral Care Team.

What support does the Pastoral Care Team provide?

The PCT responds to email and phone requests and will offer to set up a confidential 1-on-1 phone or Zoom (video conference) conversation with you. They may also correspond with you by text, if that’s how you’d like to chat.

In addition to conversations and deep listening, the PCT can help with:
– connecting you with a local Unitarian minister or lay pastoral care team
– connecting you with young adult groups and online Unitarian communities
– information about regional and national young adult events that can provide meaningful  friendships and connections
– when needed, recommending mental health services, professional counselling and other supports that can help you move forward

At your first meeting, one of the ministers will talk to you about the kind of support they can offer, and the boundaries of this pastoral care program.

Contacting the Pastoral Care Team

** If you are in an emergency situation, or are at risk of hurting yourself, please contact a crisis line to get help. The Pastoral Care Team can also be a resource for you, but is not able to provide emergency care.
Crisis Services Canada has a toll free number, text support and live chat that you can access right away, 24/7. If you are in a crisis, please contact them by phone at 1-833-456-4566 or by text at 45645.

You can contact the PCT by phone or email and one of the members will be in touch within 24 hours to set up a time to meet. The team will try to offer care as soon as possible, based on the urgency of your request, and usually within 2-3 days of getting your message.  

By email: pastoralcare@cuc.ca
By phone:  204-900-0150

In your message, please include:  
– your name
– how you’d like to be contacted – a phone number or email address
– a short summary of what you’d like to talk to the PCT about
– how urgent your request is
– times when someone can reach you

Confidentiality:

All requests and meetings with the team are confidential – between you and your support person. However, there are a few cases where the Pastoral Care Team is required to inform CUC staff and take further action:
– a threat or report of harm to yourself
– a threat or report of harm to others
– disclosure of child abuse or suspected harm to a minor (anyone under 18)

In each case, the Pastoral Care Team and the designated CUC Staff will work with you to determine and take the next steps, which may include connecting you with local services and supports.

Who is on the Pastoral Care Team?

Rev. Rodrigo Emilio Solano-Quesnel is the minister of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Olinda, near Windsor, Ontario. Rod has experience providing support as a chaplain in hospitals, in congregations and at events like the Opus young adult retreat. Having come to Unitarian Universalism as a young adult, Rod is inspired to respond to the unique needs of people in this age group.

Rev. Anne Barker is the minister of Westwood Unitarian Congregation in Edmonton, Alberta. With 10 years of experience as the pastoral minister of a small congregation, Anne is happy to provide a listening ear, a warm smile and guidance on creating rituals that can help people celebrate, heal, grieve and connect with others. She is looking forward to meeting young adults through this work.

Ben Robins is a newly-fellowshipped UU minister who currently serves the Unitarian Fellowship of Peterborough as their Director of Religious Exploration. Ben has been a chaplain for events including the CUC Conference, and in other settings, and feels that relationships are key to his ministry. Drawing on his own experience of connection in the young adult community, Ben is looking forward to helping young adults get the support they need.

Do you have a general question about the Pastoral Care Team, or this CUC program? Please contact Asha Philar at asha@cuc.ca or 226-820-9311.