Social Action Programs

Family Promise

Family Promise is an interfaith non-profit organization committed to meeting the growing need to provide shelter, meals, and comprehensive support to families without homes. Founded in 1986 in New Jersey, Family Promise affiliates now exist in 41 states across the country, with more than 160,000 volunteers contributing their talent and energy. Since its founding, Family Promise has served over 500,000 people (mostly children); nearly 80% of Family Promise clients are successful in securing permanent housing after participating in the program. Family Promise North Shore Boston is the fourth affiliate in Massachusetts, serving families in our area.

The heart of each affiliate is the Interfaith Hospitality Network, religious congregations who furnish sleeping quarters and meals for families participating in the program. On June 1, 2014, at the annual congregational meeting, UUCM voted to join this Interfaith Hospitality Network.

This commitment will require participation from all members of UUCM, as well as supporting congregations. We welcome you to join us!! When hosting the FPNSB families, there are a variety of tasks that will need to be done. Every job, big or small, is important – the success of this effort depends on us all!! Volunteers who have contact with FPNSB families are required to attend a short training class, and submit a CORI form (background check).

7th Principle: Sustainable Living Committee

UUCM has established a group to promote the Unitarian Universalist 7th Principle, “ Respect for the Interdependent Web of All Existence of Which We are Part” (i.e., “We care for the Earth”).   The 7th Principle: Sustainable Living Committee’s mission is to provide leadership for the UUCM community toward more sustainable living and promote environmental justice and the preservation of our natural environment.

Toward that end, the committee promotes education about what we as individuals and as a congregation could do through seminars, handouts and bulletin board postings.

We welcome anyone wanting to help, and also ideas about what you would like to see the  committee do in the future.

Lifebridge

Our church has provided meals twice a month for Lifebridge Homeless Shelter (aka Crombie St. and Salem Mission) since it opened in the 1980s.  We generally feed about 80 people at each supper with meals ranging from meatloaf to pad thai.  There are usually eight to twelve of us preparing and serving the meals.

Jack Weltner  (781-631-8581) is responsible for the second Thursday of the month.  This group generally prepares the food at home and arrives about 5:45, serving at 6:30.  Generally we head home just after 7.  We are: Jack W, Philippa Longin, Kevin Robichaud, Charlie and Deb Coulson, Deb Cherry, Sabin and Olivia James, Don Hulbert, Adam Walters, Lisa Kirk, Rob and Jen Ferro, Devon Hildreth, Tom Gale, Luke and Julie Anderson, Ellen Epstein, and Ginny Bowen.  Many hands make light work!

Judith Black (781-631-4417) is responsible for the fourth Thursday.  She and her cooks arrive early and do the cooking together in the well-equipped kitchen at the shelter, also serving about 6:30.  Judith and her crew sing as they cook!

In 2013 Our youth group, The Wild Things, asked if they could have a night of their own to cook and serve at Lifebridge. Ever since then, on the Second Fridays of the month, the youth and our minister meet at Lifebridge and cook and serve from 5-7 pm. It is considered one of the treasured activities by our youth.
From time to time the entire congregation gets involved in one of three ways:
1. A call will go out for specific donations to fulfill a need identified by one of our volunteers. Examples include potholders, peelers and drink mixes. When that happens, people are invited to bring those things into service on a Sunday and someone volunteers to drop them off.
2. Our minister asks Lifebridge for any odd nights that they haven’t been able to fill. She then puts out the call for volunteers.
3. Sometimes we’ll take on an extra night and engage the entire congregation in the shopping piece so that many hands are involved. A shopping list is shared, donations are brought to the church and a smaller group takes on the cooking.

Anyone interested In helping out should contact any of us to make arrangements.

 

Justice in the Middle East

Members of the Social Action committee have joined with others from area UU churches to form a Massachusetts chapter of Unitarian Universalists for Justice in the Middle East (UUJME-MA).  UUJME is a national “affiliated organization” of the UUA. The local branch of that group has been organizing for the last few years and adopted this mission statement.

 “We are committed to the covenant of our faith, which speaks to the inherent worth and dignity of every person; justice equity and compassion in human relations, and the free and responsible search for truth and meaning.

With these UU principles in mind, it is our mission through education and dialogue to raise the consciousness of the UU community in Massachusetts, so that we can contribute to a just resolution of the Israel/Palestine situation.”

In keeping with that mission, the members of our local community, who are deeply concerned about the Israel/Palestine problem are hoping to continue the effort to provide information to our congregation and others in the region about the Palestinian experience of the Middle East conflict. We are working for a long term just and peaceful solution for all the people in Israel/Palestine.

We offered a study group based on curricula published by the Presbyterian Church USA, which has taken leadership role in advocacy in this arena. We also periodically attend speaker meetings or protests organized by other UU Congregations or like-minded organizations.

We periodically sell Olive Oil produced by West Bank farmers and made available thru Equal Exchange.

To contact us: carolyn.corzine@gmail.com

Welcoming Congregation Committee

Purpose:

To provide resources and programs for the congregation which welcome and affirm LGBTQ (Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender/Queer) members and friends and their straight allies.

Duties:

  • Offer religious education that incorporates LGBTQ issues
  • Participate in and support efforts to create justice, freedom and equality for LGBTQ people in the larger society
  • Offer workshops and programs on LGBTQ and diversity issues
  • Review and recommend the inclusion of affirmative non-discrimination clauses in congregation documents and publicity
  • Promote the use of inclusive language and content as a regular part of the worship services and other internal meetings/events.

How you can help:

  • Help to work for marriage rights, protection and full rights for all.
  • Support the Welcoming Congregation by attending Welcoming Congregation workshops and events such as –LGBTQ theme movies, game nights, and participating in our community outreach – Lifebridge, seniors, LGBTQ teens, and other UU Welcoming Congregations.
  • Help to affirm LGBTQ’s in our UUCM congregation and the community at large.
  • Participate with us in June LGBTQ & Allies Pride Month – Sunday Pride Service, Annual Art Exhibit, annual LGBTQ picnic and Boston’s LGBTQ Pride Parade, always the second Saturday of June.
  • Wear one of the many UUCM Pride T-shirts.
  • Wear a rainbow ribbon in your name badge to show support for diversity in our lives.