Volunteer Opportunities — UU Church of Kent Shared Ministries

Each year, our Membership Committee hosts a shared ministries fair.  During this event, members and friends of the UU Church of Kent are introduced to numerous programs and ministries within our church community.  It is hoped that everyone finds a niche — a program, ministry, or social connection that speaks to them or feeds their soul. 

In this time of virtual church life, our programs, ministries, and social connections are still active.  We hope the information below helps you find your niche and deepen your connection with our church community.

Questions? Contact MaryBeth at [email protected]


Sunday Worship Service
You are invited to join us each Sunday at 10:00 AM The link to join the worship service is below. We request that everyone joining the service please display your first and last name.  Thank you!
Click here to Join Zoom Meeting: https://zoom.us/j/764615105
Meeting ID: 764 615 105
You can also join by phone using one of these numbers:
            +1 646 876 9923 US (New York)
            +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
Meeting ID: 764 615 105
If you’re unable to join us on Zoom, you can access previous Sunday Services on the church website: https://kentuu.org/news/previous-services/
Wednesday Vespers
A short weekly vespers service will be offered by Rev. Steven and the Worship Arts Team each week on Wednesdays at 7 pm. Please join us in sharing, reflection, and mutual care. 

When joining Vespers via Zoom, please display your first and last name.  Thank you!
Join the Vespers Service: https://zoom.us/j/269969926
Meeting ID: 269 969 926
Dial by your location
            +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
            +1 646 876 9923 US (New York)
Meeting ID: 269 969 926
Music Program
The Adult Peace Choir, Golden Tones Children’s Choir, Kent UU Tone Chimers, and Fallow Time Folk Orchestra are all performing virtually at this time.  If you are interested in participating in a group or performing your own music, please have a conversation with Hal Walker, our Music Director.
Contact:   Hal Walker             [email protected]
Sunday Service Tech Team
  Greeter –  Monitors waitroom, video and audio feeds, Co-host in Zoom
Projector – Host in Zoom, Ability to show slides full screen not using webcam, multiple monitors preferred, creates/monitors breakout rooms
  Director – Changes spotlight in Zoom, mute/unmute if necessary, Co-host in Zoom
Recorder – Needs ability to record service to local device (do not interact with Zoom meeting, as local changes in view are recorded). Need 1 to 1.2 GB per service to store raw recording,  Edits and publishes recording to Google drive.
Slide Team – Creates Sunday service and announcement slide decks each week.
Contact:  MaryBeth      [email protected]
Worship Associates
Worship Associates serve at the invitation of the Worship Arts Team. The minister and the Worship Associates have a shared ministry around providing worship services for the congregation. Together they provide the Sunday morning worship service and plan the services.  The Worship Associate Team also helps with filling the pulpit on the Sundays when the minister is away.  They normally serve a minimum of three years.  Rev. Steven provides training opportunities for new worship associates.
Contact:  Rev. Steven Protzman        [email protected]
Commissioned Lay Ministry
Not everyone feels the call to the ordained ministry, but the Central East Region offers an alternative path to service other than becoming a professional minister.The Commissioned Lay Ministry (CLM) Program provides an opportunity for committed Unitarian Universalist leaders in our region to deepen their faith while serving their congregations in more significant ways.  Interested aspirants should talk to their congregation’s minister and read through the materials at  https://www.uua.org/central-east/programs/cll  
Contact:   Beth Casebolt       [email protected]


Board Listening Session
Do you have questions? Do you want to share an idea?  Our Board wants to hear from you!  Join Board of Trustee members via Zoom at 11 AM the first Sunday of each month (Immediately following the service) in the monthly Board Listening Session.
https://zoom.us/j/92509818640     Meeting ID: 925 0981 8640
Board of Trustees Members for 2020-2021:
                        Diana Watt – Moderator
                        Don Gregg – Assistant Moderator
                        Dave Smeltzer – Co-Secretary
                        Liz Bright – Trustee
                        Diane Kloss – Trustee
                        Vivien Sandlund – Trustee
                        Blaine Vesely – Trustee
Contact: [email protected]
Social Connections
Social Connections gatherings meet virtually every Thursday evening at 7 PM.  Each week facilitators Kathy Kerns and Trish McLoughlin will host the discussion on weekly topics following the schedule below.  No sign up is needed, drop in and connect with others!
First Thursday topic – Books/Literature
Second Thursday topic – Nature/Environment
Third Thursday topic – Movies/ Entertainment
Fourth and Fifth Thursday topic – Varies each month          
We use the same Zoom link every Thursday!
Join:  https://zoom.us/j/781042042       Meeting ID   781 042 042
Dial by your location  
+1 646 876 9923  US ( New York)       
+1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
Meeting ID:   638 532 533

Contacts:   Kathy Kerns and Trish McLoughlin   
Circle of Connection
This is a small group that meets virtually every Friday from 3-4 PM.  Participants encourage and support each other through informal conversation, check-ins, and deep listening. 
Contact:   Liz Bright     
Retiree’s Gathering
All retirees are invited to join our weekly virtual conversation on Wednesdays at noon. Contact Brad Bolton to be added to this group and receive weekly reminders.
Join the Zoom meeting:    https://zoom.us/j/99783422937    
Meeting ID:  997 8342 2937
Dial by your location    
+1 312 626 6799  US (Chicago)     
+1 646 558 8656  US  (New York)

Contact:    Brad Bolton    
Building and Grounds Team
Even though we are currently meeting virtually, our buildings and grounds still require care and maintenance.  Volunteers are always needed and  physical distancing protocols are followed.
Contact:  Georgia Quinn     
Membership Team
This group meets virtually each month to plan and implement ways of making guests and new members feel welcomed and part of our beloved community. 
Contact:     Claudia Miller   
FaceBook Group
If you use FaceBook, this is an easy way to connect with the church community.
Search for “Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent”  on FaceBook, and request to join the group.
Care Team
Volunteers make calls, assist with requests for help, including meals, transportation, and other needs, and provide spiritual support for people experiencing life’s transitions.  If you would like to volunteer or are in need of assistance, please speak with the minister.
Contact:  Rev. Steven Protzman        [email protected]


Religious Education Committee
This committee meets monthly with our Director of Religious Education (DRE)  to plan and implement programming for our children, youth and their families.
Contact:   Amanda Rome      
Adult Religious Exploration
Each year our minister and members of the congregation offer a variety of classes, including Spirituality, UU History, Theology and other subjects that offer opportunities to grow in mind and spirit.    As classes are scheduled, they will be advertised in the enUUs. If you have suggestions or would like to be involved in planning or facilitating a class, please contact the minister.
Contact:   Rev. Steven Protzman       [email protected]
Programming for families with children/youth ages preschool through high school

For any of the seven opportunities listed below:
Contact:   Colleen Thoele – Director of Religious Education      [email protected]  
1.   Religious Education (RE)  for Children/Youth
Pre-K through middle school will gather after worship at 11:30! Everyone will enter the same zoom room and then will be separated into 3 classes – Pre-K- 1st grade, 2-5th grade and 6-8th grade.
Youth in high school grades 9-12 will meet at noon after Sunday worship. Youth group will have their own Zoom link. 
This year we are once again following the Soul Matters curriculum for all classes. The Soul Matters Sharing Circle is a network of Unitarian Universalist congregations who follow the same monthly themes so we can more easily share worship, sermon, music and children’s religious education resources. We are a web of support and connection. Companions traveling a new journey together each month. This year the Soul Matters team has worked tirelessly to translate the monthly curriculum to the virtual classroom!  To register your child for religious education, simply follow this link and fill out the form. https://forms.gle/fdBx7cUmoBKY8zKH6
2.   Parent and Caregivers Meeting
Third Thursday of each month at 7:00 PM
Need to talk with other parents and caregivers about what’s going on? This Zoom meeting is for you!
3.  Bedtime Storytime with Miss Michelle
First Tuesday of each month at 7:30 PM   This story time is for our youngest kiddos ( and ANYONE who loves a good storytime). This is a chance for your littles to see Miss Michelle and enjoy some time together. Oh and come in your PJs!
4.   Soulful Home
Third Tuesday of each month beginning in October (10/20) More details about what that will look like is coming soon! Please keep an eye on our weekly email news for what to expect!
5.   Children/youth choir
New participants are always welcome, please reach out if your kiddo would like to give it a try.
6.   RE Facebook Group
UU Church of Kent families have a private Facebook group for posting info, news and to connect with each other.
7.   Just for FUN!
Throughout the year we will hold fun events like talent shows, dance parties, craft time and more! When these events are scheduled an email will go out to families with registered children in the RE program. The events will also be advertised in the EnUUs, website and Facebook pages.
Hogwarts is a program for children/youth that combines outreach, social justice, and religious exploration. Twice a year we open the castle doors (virtually for now) and create a safe space where students and volunteers can be their authentic selves, have fun, and explore our seven UU principles together.  Students rotate through classes such as Potions, Charms, and Defense Against the Dark Arts where they learn to care for themselves, others, and our planet.  Our amazing volunteers create a magical immersive experience that demonstrates love and kindness are the most powerful magic of all.  If you like teaching, dressing up, playing, singing, or working behind the scenes to make extraordinary things happen – Hogwarts is a great way to connect with our community while encouraging young people to be brave, curious, and compassionate thinkers and doers.

If you’d like to volunteer or have a child/youth who wants to attend – reach out to the Hogwarts Board of Governors for more information.

Contact: Board of Governors         [email protected]
Covenant Groups
These small groups meet virtually once a month on either Wednesday or Thursday evenings and provide opportunities for spiritual development through deep conversation and build community as members get to know each other.  A different topic is discussed each month using materials from the Unitarian Universalist Association’s “Soul Matters” program.
Groups for the fall have already been formed, but you can contact Kathy to check on space availability.   New groups will form in the winter, so watch the e-nUUs for sign up information.
Contact:  Kathy Kerns         
A Journey of Belonging
If you are an “Inquirer” searching for community and engagement opportunities and want to learn more about our congregation and Unitarian Universalism, this series of classes and conversations may be what you are looking for.  Our first class of welcome, sharing our journeys, and “stump the minister” was held Aug. 30.  The next class is October 4th, immediately following the Sunday Worship Service. Rev. Steven will discuss worship and theology.  All are welcome to attend, no sign-up is needed.  Watch the e-nUUs for the description and time of future classes. 
Contact:  Ginny Horvath     

Income Generation

Generosity Team
 No one likes to talk about money, but the truth of it is, it’s needed to keep our church a thriving religious community.   I believe that one of the hallmarks of spiritual maturity is a capacity for generosity. Generosity allows us to align the use of personal resources (including our money) with our most deeply held spiritual values.

Our church is entirely self supporting.  We do not receive any financial assistance from a national organization.  All of our weekly services, religious education (children and adult),  building expenses and community outreach programs are supported solely by the contributions of our members and friends.  We raise funds by running a pledge campaign in the spring of every year.   As a member, you will be asked to contribute to the campaign to support the running of our church.  We do not ask you to give until it hurts, rather give until it feels right.  Annual pledges are usually paid in monthly installments, but can be structured in any way that works the best with your budget. 

The act of kind-hearted giving deepens the meaning and purpose of our lives, and can make giving a spiritual practice. Thank you for showing in interest in our Unitarian Universalist Church.  I hope you find a home here.  If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact me.

Contact:  Kay Eckman
Our church relies solely on pledges/donations and our own fund-raising efforts to provide the monies needed for our operating budget.  Thank you for your generosity!
During our virtual services you may donate several different ways.
Text “Give” or $Amount to  330 835 5028
Online via UUCK website:  https://kentuu.org/giving/donate
Mail a check to: UU Church of Kent, 228 Gougler Ave., Kent, OH  44240
Financial Secretaries and Helpers
Our church elects financial secretaries to give an accurate count of all monies coming into the church.  Volunteer helpers meet with the financial secretaries to count the pledges/donations for the week.   One volunteer and one financial secretary meet in-person, wearing masks and keeping physically  distant, on Monday evenings at 5:30 PM.  Volunteers are needed at this time.
Contact: MaryBeth      [email protected], or
                Lois Weir      [email protected]           
Endowment Funds and Legacy Giving
The planned giving program at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent encourages thoughtful gifts to build an endowment supporting our heritage preservation. There are numerous ways to donate.

A Bequest – the simplest of planned gifts.  A direction in your will or trust for a gift to the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent, this can be a specific amount or a percentage of what remains after providing for your heirs.

Life Insurance – name the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent as an owner or beneficiary of a life insurance policy.

Life-Estate Agreement – transfer title of a residence to the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent while retaining use of the real estate for life.

Gift Annuity – a gift of appreciated stock or other property, of which you or other beneficiaries receive fixed annual payments.  Payment is based on the age of the beneficiaries at the time of the gift.  In general, the donor receives an income tax deduction now and avoids capital gains tax on the sale of the property.

Charitable Remainder Trust – a gift paying income to you or to your named beneficiaries.
Retirement Plan Assets – name the Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent as a beneficiary of an IRA, 401(k), 403(b), profit sharing or other retirement plan.  The donor may receive an income-tax deduction now and avoid estate taxes later.

Contingency Planning – for those who have significant estate commitments for family or other reasons may consider a “contingent bequest” that would address your Unitarian Universalist Church of Kent priority should all other beneficiaries pre-decease.  Virtually every member can provide a contingent clause while maintaining commitments for young family members or elderly parents.
Would you like to discuss your participation in our Heritage Program.  Our Legacy Committee members are available to answer questions and discuss your Heritage gift in a confidential setting.
Contact:  Elaine Bowen  
Simple Gifts
Whereas our Heritage Program is designed to encourage planned giving in support of our endowment, our Simple Gifts program is designed to encourage everyday giving.  If members and friends of the congregation remember the church with regular gifts in support of our endowment, we will be well on our way to building the kind of endowment that can help ensure our congregation’s continuing health and vitality.  We all have a part to play in shaping the legacy we will pass on to future generations.

 All of us have reasons to celebrate – birthdays, anniversaries, engagements, weddings, child dedications, graduations, new jobs, promotions and so many other events can remind us of our blessings. When these special occasions roll around, you might consider encouraging a gift to Simple Gifts in support of our endowment or making a gift yourself.

 Often when someone extends a kindness or goes the extra mile, we want a meaningful way to express our thanks.  Making a contribution to our Simple Gifts program is a wonderful way to underscore your gratitude.  You can make a gift in gratitude for someone who does you a personal favor, like coming over to feed your cats when you are out of town.  Or maybe someone in the congregation has stepped up to leadership or labor to help make the church a better place.

Making a gift to Simple Gifts is a great way to let them know you appreciate their efforts. Your gift can be any size.  No amount is too small or too large.  The donor will be able to claim a tax deduction for their gift which will be reflected on their contribution statement.  Please know when you give a gift in honor, celebration or in appreciation of another, the designee(s) will receive an acknowledgement of your Simple Gift.

Contact:  Elaine Bowen         
Church Auction
Nov. 15-21 (virtual auction)
Time to Plan for Your Donations
Are you canning or pickling? Need another craft project during the Dog Days of Summer? Why not figure the church’s Thanks4Giving fundraising auction into your plans.

Yes, the time is right for planning your contributions to the church’s virtual auction, Nov. 15 to 21. Of course, it will be different. You’ll bid online and we’ll be zooming in for the “live” auction. It will be fun and exciting – and there’s no need to find a babysitter, dress up or go out on a cold, snowy evening.  This year the Thanks4Giving auction will commemorate the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II (1945) with a homage to Rosie the Riveter – We Can DUU It!
Stay tuned for more details and updates. Stay safe out there!
Your Thanks4Giving Auction Committee
Contact: [email protected]
Amazon Smile
If you shop on Amazon, please consider using smile.amazon.com and designating the First Universalist Church of Kent as your charity of choice.  Amazon donates a percentage of each purchase made through the smile.amazon.com website.  Together, our purchases add up and the church benefits!
Acme Community Cash Back
If you shop at Acme, please save your receipts dated Aug. 8 – Dec. 26, 2020.  The church earns a percentage of the dollar amount listed by Community Cash Back.   Please mail or drop off receipts at the church office.   228 Gougler Ave.   Kent, OH  44240
Contact:   Elaine Bowen   
Grocery Card Sales
Our church sells gift cards to Acme, Giant Eagle or Meijers. A small percentage of each sale is donated to the church.  Cards can be purchased through the church office.
Contact:  MaryBeth     [email protected]

Social Justice & Community Outreach

Race4Justice Task Force
The Race for Justice (R4J) action team embodies our UU value of racial justice by providing congregation members with opportunities for education, standing witness, advocacy, and community action.  R4J coordinates activities that range from expanding awareness and understanding of American racism to direct engagement in anti-racism activities.  R4J operates as a democratic, grass-roots action team of members who challenge themselves to be honest, uncomfortable and non-judgmental.  Traditionally, we’ve met once a month on the second Wednesday at 4:00, although we will consider changing our meeting time to accommodate new members.  Lately, we’ve been meeting twice a month.  Individuals are welcome to become Race for Justice members.
Contact: Christie Anderson       

Racial Justice Covenant Groups
These small groups are for white people who are interested in transforming their whiteness through understanding the complexities of white supremacy, as well as the impact it has on us individuals and on our larger society. The groups meet virtually and use the Unitarian Universalist Association’s curriculum, “Examining Whiteness”. 
Groups have already formed, but there are a few spaces still available so contact Rhonda if interested.

Contact:    Rhonda Richardson         
Protests Supporting Black Lives Matter
The UU Church of Kent youth group enthusiastically invites ALL people from the congregation to join us on Oct. 14 from 5:00 – 6:30 PM and again on Nov. 11 at the same time,  in support of Black Lives Matter and to express our commitment to anti-racist work through peaceful protest in front of our church. We will have markers and poster boards if you did not bring one. You could also bring your own signs. Please remember that they MUST be appropriate. They cannot be political or use inappropriate language.  Please wear a mask and maintain social distancing. We really hope to see you there!
Monthly Special Collections
Each month a different organization is chosen to receive our monetary donations. Gifts are accepted and can be made in the following ways:
1. Donate online at:  https://kentuu.org/giving/donate/, choose, “Social Justice Special Collection” to designate what your donation is for
2. A text donation: Text  a $ amount and the word Special to 330-835-5028, if provided, click on the link provided and choose “Social Justice Special Collection” Fund
3. By check — Mail to:  UU Church of Kent, 228 Gougler Ave., Kent, OH 44240
Equal Exchange Fair Trade Program
Equal Exchange is a Fair Trade cooperative that partners with churches to sell Fair Trade items to their congregations.  We have been offering these items for several years now and all proceeds have gone towards supporting our Social Justice initiatives.  Purchases made through our Equal Exchange program support small farmers by providing them with higher prices for their products.  It also helps farmers to use more sustainable environmental practices.  In addition, Equal Exchange has partnered with the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee and  donates to the UUSC based on a percentage of our purchases.  So you can see that purchases made thru our Equal Exchange program supports many Social Justice causes.  Plus everything tastes wonderful.
We are pleased to offer coffees, teas, olive oil, chocolate bars in many flavors, chocolate chips, as well as cocoa mix and baking cocoa.  There is a more extensive on-line catalog as well, and special orders are welcome. To make a purchase from our current stock or to place a special or, please contact the program coordinator.
Contact:  Saunis Parsons    
Hot Lunch Program (Lord’s Lunch)
Help prepare and serve a meal for people in need, with others from the UU Church of Kent at Trinity Lutheran Church.  Our church participates five Saturdays per year. Adults, youth and families are encouraged to volunteer.
Contact:  Camille Pavlicek-Fauser     

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