eNews: June 19, 2024 – Issue 162

This Issue:

Letter from Vyda Ng

Annual General Meetings have a bad rep, for the most part. They’re considered a necessary part of an organization’s life cycle, and thought to be boring, businessy, and blah. Until I joined the CUC’s Board of Trustees in 2003, AGMs weren’t my favourite way to spend my time. Then, I found to my extreme surprise that I liked policy and process, and understood that these are some ways to drive the work of an organization. The CUC’s AGMs (which were all in-person back then) were opportunities for me to get to know people, to share questions, thoughts and ideas, and have a glimpse into what congregations and UUs were doing.

At the CUC’s recent AGM on May 25, we did some things. Together, we decided that it is important to look out for our planet, and agreed to move towards defunding fossil fuels by acting with our money. We reaffirmed that solidarity with Indigenous People is a priority and added “Terra Nullius” to the resolution on repudiating the Doctrine of Discovery. Together, we also decided on the goal and priorities that would drive the work of the CUC for the next two years: “Work together to enhance and strengthen existing successful approaches and to identify new ways to build a dynamic and sustainable Canadian Unitarian Universalism that serves our Unitarian Universalist and wider communities, grounded in our 8 Principles.” 

Before the AGM, two considerations drove my planning: 1) how to create a process where participation and engagement is attractive for all UUs, not just delegates; and 2) how to make sure that all the tech went as smoothly as possible during the AGM so that participants would have a good experience. 

In the months leading up to the AGM, based on the work of the Decision Making Exploration Team, we expanded the discussions of the motions so that more people could be part of the conversation, and of the future of the CUC. During the AGM, the Chair (Kiersten Moore) invited observers as well as delegates. A team of dedicated staff and volunteers worked hard to deliver a seamless online experience.

Did we succeed? Well, we had music at the AGM courtesy of Rev. Wendy Luella Perkins! 126 people attended online, with 73 of those being delegates. I think we had almost no technical glitches. Did people feel included and a part of the Canadian UU family? My mind is churning with all the things we could have done more of or differently, and I came away with this takeaway: however well we did, we can do better.

The decisions made at the AGM drive the work of the CUC and define work pathways for the staff. Now that the AGM is over, if you’re interested in being part of the follow up for the Defunding Fossil Fuels and Terra Nullius resolutions, email executivedirector@cuc.ca

Check out the hard work behind the scenes, described in the Annual Reports folder.

Reflections on CanUUdle

Over the May long weekend we held our National Youth Conference, CanUUdle, at the Unitarian Church of Edmonton.  Highlights of the event were the dance, coffee house, games, YOB elections, and the strong community that we built together! We came away from CanUUdle with new friends, full hearts, and paper bags full of warm fuzzies!
Written by: CanUUdle Coordinator Alex Okrainetz

Canuudle is a big stepping stone into discovering your spiritual and religious identity, I grew up going to church every Sunday where I did have connections with youth and adults but that was only the beginning. When I heard about Canuudle it felt inspirational and exciting to be in a space that is made for youth, by the youth. The UU youth have different opinions and beliefs, yet we create this amazing community that transcends beyond May long, until next year. It is a relief that you don’t have to hide who you are and can just be silly and pull an all nighter or go to bed at 7 and wake up to still have so much fun in the morning.
Written by: Siobhan Fichtner-Jack (a bridging youth and one of the CanUUdle Co-Deans)

Exciting Virtual Adventure at the CUC Co-Lab: Experiences of Transformation

Mark your calendars for an exhilarating event from November 1st to 3rd, 2024, as Unitarians, Universalists, UU congregations, and communities come together for the CUC Co-Lab: Experiences of Transformation. This virtual gathering promises a unique opportunity to connect, enjoy, and engage in profound conversations.

Mission and Goals

The mission of the CUC Co-Lab is to foster authentic connections, ignite inspiration, and explore significant questions about change, transformation, and renewal in alignment with our shared values. Participants will engage in focused discussions, captivating storytelling, and innovative events designed to cultivate hope and renewal.

Event Highlights

    • Focused Chats: Engage in meaningful conversations about change and transformation.
    • Captivating Storytelling: Hear inspiring stories that reflect our values and experiences.
    • Innovative Events: Participate in unique activities that promote connection and inspiration.

Join Us

Whether you’re a seasoned member of the CUC community or new to the scene, everyone is invited to join this journey of shaping a brighter future together. Don’t miss this chance to reignite your inner spark and co-create our direction for the future.

Pod-ding Together

Interested in gathering in-person with others in your congregation or region for the event? We will send you suggestions for how to gather for the weekend. Select that option when you register. (For those who have already registered, email congregationallife@cuc.ca to request the information).


Secure your spot for this incredible journey today! Click the link below to register and be the first to receive emerging details about the event.

Register Now!

Spread the word and join us at the CUC Co-Lab for an adventure that promises to inspire and transform. Let’s embark on this exciting journey together!

Rev. Danie Webber Entering Candidating Week at First Unitarian Church of Hamilton.

Hello, Canadian Unitarian/Universalists

After spending three years supporting congregations with their youth and young adult ministry (YaYA), and spending lots of time ministering to and with our national youth and young adult communities, I decided it was time to seek out parish ministry again and see what ministry I might share with a local community. I entered the search process in April, and after many emails, much study and a few Zoom conversations, I matched with First Unitarian Church of Hamilton and will be headed there for Candidating week June 15 – 23rd. I am looking forward to discovering more about the community and what sort of shared ministry we can create together! And await the congregational vote on June 23rd to affirm this settled ministry!

YaYA Ministry has always been a significant part of my life, having grown up in our denomination, participating in youth groups, and helping to create a Young Adult group in my home congregation. The ministry we create for and with our younger people is so extremely important to our denomination and the work of discovering what Unitarian Universalism can become. Working with the Canadian Unitarian Council in this ministry to create resources and opportunities to deepen our collective understanding of YaYA ministry has helped me to understand better and articulate my need for a co-created, intergenerational and inclusive ministry. I look forward to continuing to explore the possibilities of faith formation and deepening our relationships across the generations.

Thank you to all those who participated in roundtables, workshops, trainings and events I helped co-create over the last three years! 

Elementary (K-6) OWL Facilitator Training

A special collaboration is happening between the Unitarian Fellowship of Peterborough, Unicamp of Ontario and the Canadian Unitarian Council to bring Our Whole Lives Facilitator Training to Unicamp!

Trainers Liz Cox and Rev. Christopher Wulff will share everything you need to know about running a successful OWL program in your community for children in Kindergarten through grade 6 while enjoying the nature and beauty of Unicamp, just north of Shelburne, ON. Programming will run from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm August 19 – 21, leaving you time to explore the area or hang out beside the fire pit in the evenings. Or come to camp early, stay late, and soak up all of the Unicamp goodness! 

OWL facilitator training provides theoretical and hands-on training to facilitate the Our Whole Lives program for children in Kindergarten through Grade 2 and Grades 4-6. We welcome those from outside the Unitarian Universalist tradition who would like to run OWL programs in schools, camps, or other settings. Our training is a requirement for using OWL curricula and materials.

This training is happening IN PERSON ONLY at Unicamp and is open to Canadians and Americans. Registration can be found here.

To be approved as an OWL facilitator, participants must attend the whole training session and complete the group teaching activities. Additionally, 3.5 hours of work must be done ahead of the in-person training. The trainers will email you details about this three weeks before the training. 

Roots of Resilience Program

We’ve heard from many how helpful the Meaning Making in Liminal Times, sermon series was for many congregations.  Good News!  Rev. Karen Fraser Gitlitz the coordinator of last year’s program is planning another, updated series.

Registration material will be ready soon, but in the meantime, if you want information about the Roots of Resilience program, you can contact Karen directly.  Updates for 2024-25 include 8 sermons and an accompanying theme program with 8 Canadian theme ministry packages.


Did You Know? The CUC Has a Job Board

Are you looking to advertise an employment opportunity within your congregation? The CUC’s Jobs & Volunteering page is a great starting point. 

Fill out this form or contact jobs@cuc.ca to spread the word.




What’s Making Us Smile

“Turn off, tune out, and drop in.” That’s the message to customers at a Dutch digital detox cafe who are paying for the privilege of leaving their phones at the door. The Offline Club, which began in Amsterdam, offers an oasis of calm and respite from the incessant digital hustle of life lived through the black glass of a smartphone, and the concept is now poised to go global.

CUC Office Closure

The CUC office will be closed July 29 – August 9, reopening August 12. In addition, there will be no July issue of the eNews. We wish everyone a safe and restful summer.

CUC Events from June 19, 2024 to November 3, 2024

Share what’s going on in your congregation. Contact communications@cuc.ca

Rising Together: Unitarian Universalists of Colour
Jul. 10: 4:30 pm PT | 5:30 pm MT | 6:30 pm CT | 7:30 pm ET | 8:30 pm AT | 9:00 pm NT (1.5 hours)

Elementary (K-6) OWL Facilitator Training
Aug 19 – 21 

Lay Chaplains Chat (Online)
Oct. 7: 4:30 pm PT | 5:30 pm MT | 6:30 pm CT | 7:30 pm ET | 8:30 pm AT | 9:00 pm NT

CUC Co-Lab: Experiences of Transformation (Online)
Nov 1 – 3

Enews Prepared and Formatted by Brigitte Twomey, Website Specialist