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December 2022           Vol. IV Issue 6
In this issue:
From the Minister
Music Schedule for December 2022
Good neighbors
Walking This Earth
An Ecological Product plus Support our Social Action Committee
Welcome to the family
Birthdays in December
Poetry Corner
Member Spotlight: Charlie Chilton
Nov. Pot Luck Luncheon
Tidings Notes
Board Retreat Minutes:
1. Political Statements from the Pulpit
2. Updating the UUCSV Organizational Chart
3. Congregational Governance
4. Committee Leadership
5. UUCSV Annual Auction and How Proceeds are Allocated
6. UUCSV Membership Termination Process Review
7. Congregational Growth
UUCSV Leadership
From the Minister
What a year it has been! I am writing this on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving so as to have this ready for December publication in our newsletters. For me personally, it has been a year of tremendous change. I purchased a "new" preowned car in January. I turned 65 this year and began collecting Medicare, while also moving to a new home and getting married on the 5th of November. My daughter began driving this year as well. 
It is sometimes difficult to imagine that our lives can still be good in the middle of the chaos that is going on in the world; there are wars and rumors of wars, economic and political upheaval, climate change, the list goes on and on. At times our minds may tell us that we do not deserve the good that comes our way. But rest assured-- we do. Why? Because the good you put out into the world will always come back to you in some way shape or form. This is not to say that there are times when things go our way and we don't understand why? This is at times referred to as "luck" or even "grace." Whatever it is, I will take it and be thankful for it, if for no other reason than I am living a good life when so many others are not. I am very fortunate indeed.  Compared to most of the world, I am living a prosperous and abundant life. I own that. 
This is the time of year (actually all the days of the year are a reminder) to remember to not let the things we want make us forget the things we already have. I am thankful for so much in my life. One of those things that I am eternally grateful for is to serve this congregation. I thank you for the opportunity to continue to serve UUCSV.  As we close out the year, I will let the eloquence of Dr. Howard Thurman give voice to the meaning of Christmas and New Year's (see below.)
Happy Holidays to each and every one of you, whatever celebrations you choose to honor.
Peace and Richest Blessings To You All, 
Rev. Michael J. S. Carter
NOTE: The following articles are from Howard Thurman, The Mood of Christmas, (Friends United Press: 1973, 1985)
"The Universality of the Madonna and Child" 
During the season of Christmas in many art galleries, in countless homes and churches, and on myriad Christmas cards, there will be scenes picturing the Madonna and Child. There is a sense in which the Madonna and Child experience is not the exclusive possession of any faith or any race. This is not to gainsay, to underestimate, or to speak irreverently of the far-reaching significance of the Madonna in Christianity, particularly in Roman Catholicism. But it is to point out the fact that the Madonna and Child both in art and religion is a recognition of the universality of the experience of motherhood as an expression of the creative and redemptive principle of life. It affirms the constancy of the idea that life is dynamic and alive — that death as the final consummation of life is an illusion.
The limitless resources of life are at the disposal of the creative impulse that fulfills itself most intimately and profoundly in the experience of the birth of a child. Here the mother becomes one with the moving energy of existence — in the experience of birth there is neither time, nor space, nor individuality, nor private personal existence — she is absorbed in a vast creative moment upon which the continuity of the race is dependent. The experience itself knows no race, no culture, no language — it is the trysting place of woman and the Eternal.
The Madonna and Child in Christianity is profoundly rooted in this background of universality. Specifically, it dramatizes the birth of a Jewish baby, under unique circumstances, calling attention to a destiny in which the whole human race is involved. For many to whom he is the Savior of mankind, no claim as to his origin is too great or too lofty. Here is the culmination of a vast expectancy and the fulfillment of a desperate need. Through the ages the message of him whose coming is celebrated at Christmastime says again and again through artists, through liturgy, through music, through the written and spoken word, through great devotion and heroic sacrifice, that the destiny of man on earth is a good and common destiny — that however dark the moment or the days may be, the redemptive impulse of God is ever present in human life.
But there is something more. The Madonna and Child conception suggests that the growing edge of human life, the hope of every generation, is in the birth of the child. The stirring of the child in the womb is the perennial sign of man's attack on bigotry, blindness, prejudice, greed, hate, and all the host of diseases that make of man's life a nightmare and a holocaust.
The Birth of the Child in China, Japan, the Philippines, Russia, India, America, and all over the world, is the breathless moment like the stillness of absolute motion, when something new, fresh, whole, may be ushered into the nations that will be the rallying point for the whole human race to move in solid phalanx into the city of God, into the Kingdom of Heaven on the earth.

"On the inclusive symbol of Christmas"
The symbol of Christmas—what is it? It is the rainbow arched over the roof of the sky when the clouds are heavy with foreboding. It is the cry of life in the newborn babe when, forced from its mother’s nest, it claims its right to live. It is the brooding Presence of the Eternal Spirit making crooked paths straight, rough places smooth, tired hearts refreshed, dead hopes stir with newness of life. It is the promise of tomorrow at the close of every day, the movement of life in defiance of death, and the assurance that love is sturdier than hate, that right is more confident than wrong, that good is more permanent than evil.
"This is a New Year"
The calendar says so. I note the fact by marking it so when I wish to designate the day and the year as distinguished from some other day and year. It may be that my contract says so. It is indicated clearly in the lease I signed or the agreement I attested. It is curious how much difference can be marked between the two dates - December 31 and January one. 
Yet there are many things that move unchanged, paying no attention to a device like the calendar or arrangements such as contracts or leases. There is the habit pattern of an individual life. Changes in that are not noted by the calendar, even though they may be noted on the calendar. Such changes are noted by events that make for radical shifts in values or the basic rearrangement of purposes. There are desires of the heart or moods of the spirit that may flow continuously for me whatever year the calendar indicates. The lonely heart, the joyful spirit, the churning anxiety may remain unrelieved, though the days come and go without end.
But, for many, this will be a New Year. It may mark the end of relationships of many years’ accumulation. It may mean the first encounter with stark tragedy or radical illness or the first quaffing of the cup of bitterness. It may mean the great discovery of the riches of another human heart and the revelation of the secret beauty of one’s own. It may mean the beginning of a new kind of living because of marriage, of graduation, of one’s first job. It may mean an encounter with God on the lonely road or the hearing of one’s name called by Him, high above the noise and din of the surrounding traffic. And when the call is answered, the life becomes invaded by smiling energies never before released, felt, or experienced. In whatever sense this year is a New Year for you, may the moment find you eager and unafraid, ready to take it by the hand with joy and with gratitude.
Music Schedule for December 2022
December 4th - Sue Stone, piano: prelude, postlude, 3 hymns and offertory.
December 11th -  Second Sundays, Andy Gwynn, guitar and voice; Linda Metzner, piano: 2 hymns
Andy Gwynn
NC native, grew up in Eden,NC.
-BA English, Davidson College.
-Lived in Black Mountain since 1983.
-Retired. Worked for NC Dept. of Juvenile Justice. Worked many years at Camp Woodson, a therapeutic wilderness program for adjudicated youth.
-Multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter.
-A founding member of a worship band for the early service at Black Mountain Presbyterian Church.
December 18th -  Choir performs 2 songs; Sue Stone, piano: prelude, postlude, and 2 hymns.
December 24th - Christmas Eve service: Marianne Vail, viola;  Linda Metzner, piano: prelude, postlude, offertory, 7 hymns.
No service on December 25th.
Good neighbors
What does it mean to be a good neighbor in the modern age?
Until recently I thought it was enough to simply not inconvenience my neighbors (ie not playing crazy loud music,  parking my car inconsiderately on the street or running outdoor power tools at 6 AM), but I’ve been rethinking this idea.
As a kid I knew most of the neighbors on our street by name, and there were a couple my parents were friendly with in the cliché “borrow a cup of sugar” sense, but we didn’t have them over often and were rarely invited over. 
A few months ago my children and I were walking through our neighborhood and happened to see a neighbor (a few streets over from our home) out in his lovely garden. We complimented his flowers and he insisted we stop and visit, and then take home a small vase of zinnias. My children were delighted with this exchange. I was more guarded than I care to admit. I was vaguely suspicious of this effusive neighborliness, but when I saw that same man out the next week I paused in my car to chat for a moment, and he invited me to a neighborhood potluck that very night! I was non-committal, I threw out (the very real) conflicts of soccer practice and early bed times. He insisted I think about it. In the end I convinced my husband we should maybe go (and convinced myself in the process). We went, we brought pasta salad, we drank wine in the front yard and met more neighbors in that one night than I’ve met in 8 years at our current address. We had a great time (despite being bad at small talk). We’ve since brought that neighbor & his husband some apple cake, and made plans for a board games and pizza night. We have the beginnings of a friendship forming because he was just too sincerely hospitable to refuse (and because I decided to try to be open to it). I truly believe my life will be richer for having this couple in our lives, and it's making me want to be more hospitable too (I’m thinking about hosting a front yard cocoa party or something). 
I read an article about how lonely we are as a society not too long ago and how being a better neighbor was one way to combat it (but then Covid put a damper on that). I’ve refound it recently and decided to spread it wide like gospel. You can find it here:
By Susan Enwright Hicks
Walking This Earth
"With climate change, we can complain and we can demand our politicians do something, but in the end, we are going to have to do the hard work and make a few sacrifices to stop burning fossil fuels. We have to stop buying what they are selling. It is up to us." Lloyd Alter of Treehugger Newsletter
These are some ways we are changing our lives to adapt to climate changes!  You are welcome to send your suggestions to
Saturday morning Climate Conversationalists shared their reactions to the movie Albatross. They discussed COP-27, and plans for ethical, non-plastic gifts for the holidays. There is an ongoing list being developed for things that do not have any plastic, are ethically resourced, and, if possible, not even shipped in plastic. If you'd like to contribute to this list, send suggestions to Bette Bates at blbates@mac.comLinda Tatsapaugh brought a proposal for Black Mountain to become "Zero Plastic" (see below.) It is also being presented to our Social Action committee.
Help Make Black Mountain Plastic-Free
Single-use disposable plastics pose a major danger to our health and the environment. Plastic litter clogs up our water- ways and breaks down into microplastics, which we breathe, drink, and eat – each of us consume a credit card’s worth every week. The Plastic-Free WNC task force has been working with the Asheville City Council and Buncombe County Board of Commissioners to enact a ban on single-use plastics and Styrofoam. We are close, but not there yet. I am starting an off-shoot effort to get a similar ban enacted by the town of Black Mountain. If you are interested in helping, contact me. Linda Tatsapaugh,; 828-779-2635
An Ecological Product plus Support our Social Action Committee
Do you want to reduce the use of plastics in your life and at the same time earn money for our Social Action Committee to fund projects? Consider using laundry strips instead of plastic jugs of detergent. 
Tru Earth is a Canadian based company that is pairing with nonprofits to help reduce plastic and they give 20% of the cost of the products back to UUCSV through this special link below.
They offer many plastic-free products (toilet bowl cleaners, laundry strips with a fragrance-free option, dryer balls etc.) Right now, they are offering a number of holiday discounts. You can still use all the offers from the company, (holiday sales etc.) but UUCSV only receives our 20% if you use the link.
When you open the link, there is a blue box at the bottom that says Access Our Fundraising store here, that is where you start.  
Please take the time to go through the link and shop the products and the deals. Think Holiday gifts for family and friends, stocking stuffers and presents to help everyone make the change!  Share this link with your family and friends who can then share the link with others.
If you already use these products and have a subscription (scheduled deliveries) the 20% discount will not work unless you use the link to help with this fundraiser. Any questions, please email Sue Stone (the other Sue Stone)
Many of us already use the laundry strips and have been happy with the results.  Sue will be in the portico after the next few services and will have some samples for you to try before you order. 
Welcome to the family
Joan Evelyn Grace Adams and big brother Cylis.
Joni was born to Alison Tynes Adams and Drew Adams on November 12, 2022 at Mission Hospital. She weighed 6lbs. 7 oz and arrived at 2:05 am. Her family is so excited to meet her! Grandparents Robert Tynes and Bette Bates are overjoyed!
Birthdays in December
Ruth Hubbard Lovinsohn 6
Deb Evenchik 10
Diane Hutchins 11
Ray Stein 18
Jane Carroll 21
Michelle Neff 27
To be listed in your birth month, just let the Tidings editor know by sending your info at any time to
Poetry Corner
My Hiking Friend
Happy birthday my hiking friend!
Just wanted to tell you on this hike
how much you mean to me:
you remain my model.
Your soft charm for everyone,
easy laughter and concern for all
endear you to those of us who walk
with you on this trail we call life.
For me it’s especially your grace
in the face of life’s challenges:
rising to service willingly and
handling setbacks with calm.
I know these challenges affect you,
we can see it in your eyes.
Yet you carry on and show us
a way to move forward with grace.
May your next paths forward
be less rocky for a while,
for you have clearly earned a break.
Above all thanks for sharing your journey.
A neighbor, hiking friend, and model of grace, Dr. Will Hamilton recently fell and sustained a severe head injury. He passed into the next world, Nov. 23, 2022.
By Jim Carillon


I am  so glad that today we meet
Share huggs and laughter as we greet.
It's been a while since last we met,
If it was today we all would get wet.

The voting is over!
Not yet I am afraid,
but some of my leaders, thank goodness,
have stayed.
And here comes Thanksgiving,
then Christmas
Too much I say
It's the way of our lives.

Now finally the voting is done
the Senate I am glad has actually won.
But counting the House votes goes on and on
By the end of the year, I hope they'l be done.

By then I hope we'll know who's won 
and we can rest and look for the sun.
  To keep our democratic way,
seems harder every single day.

Now many will try to make us sway,
but Democracy will truely stay.
Thank goodness for our USA,
So now I shout "Have a wonderfull day!"

By Ann Sillman
November 13 2022 


The Beauty of the Dark            
The Sun, far away, yearns to embrace us in Her warmth once again.
But this is our time to journey into the depths of the darkness.
Coming together here, we warm each other’s hearts in the darkness.
This is the time to surrender and listen deep to our souls.
This is the time to close our eyes, slow down and be lulled by the darkness.
Our blessed Mother Gaia dwells within the darkness.
Inhale the song of Her soul, Her soil, Her dark caves, Her rich dark humus.
Mother Earth welcomes you into the darkness.
Walk with confidence, all people, walk safely into the darkness.
Let us love the night, the moon, the stars, the planets, the Seven Sisters high above.
Revel in this other half of our lives, the darkness.
The beauty of the dark earth, the darkness of skin, the dark curves of mountain roads,
The Seven Sister Mountains in their powerful darkness, presiding over Black Mountain,
Our dark blood, our Earth, our deepest selves, the darkness.
By Annelinde Metzner
November 16, 2010
Member Spotlight: Charlie Chilton
Dec. 2022 Charlie Chilton
Charlie’s Song (first verse)
We share with our friends, both good times and bad.
We cheer each other up whenever we are sad.
We made choices by consensus.
We never had a fight.
But if we did we soon made up,
And it turned out alright.
We are the Unitarian Universalists of the Swannanoa Valley.
Our congregation is just one big family
None of us think alike, but that’s okay.
Like Phil Fryberger, music was a passion for UUCSV founding member, Charlie Chilton, who passed away on November 5th, in Richmond, VA. Wherever he settled, he brought his beautiful tenor voice to his church choir. He was also a member of the Asheville Choral Society.
After raising their children as Episcopalians, Charlie and Gene found their spiritual home as devout Unitarians. Like his father, he followed Micah 6:8 - act justly, love mercy, and live humbly. 
Charlie’s dedication to serving others took many forms.  For our congregation, he was deeply engaged in the formation of our church. He acted quickly when he overheard some chatter in the grocery store about the upcoming sale of the Christian Science building on Montreat Rd. Charlie immediately called Phil Fryberger and then Board President, Cheri Spires. They got the ball rolling to secure a down payment and a mortgage. We held our first service in our renovated building at 500 Montreat Rd. on July 4, 2004.
Charlie wrote a song to commemorate our inaugural Sunday Service. Charlie was a generous donor to this project and still holds the record for the largest annual pledge to the church budget. During his retirement, in addition to his leadership at UUCSV, he owned a book store in downtown Black Mountain, was an avid gardener, and along with Gene, tutored inmates at the detention center in Black Mountain. He also funded a young Romanian student’s college education. 
Prior to their move from Black Mountain to Richmond, VA, our congregation planted and dedicated a tree on our church property in honor of Charlie. Kate recently created a planting area around his tree to include two dwarf rhododendrons and ferns.
An avid learner, Charlie welcomed new ideas and alternative points of view. He loved exploring new places.  He had a quiet presence, letting his actions speak for him.  Now it is our responsibility to carry his values forward, letting our actions speak for us as UU’s while we remember him.
Tall and thin, but growing buds on each branch, Charlie's Tree.
"To Honor Charlie Chilton, Charter Member of UUCSV, for his many generous contributions. The grateful congregation of UUCSV, October 28 2005."
 By C. Shorkey

Nov. Pot Luck Luncheon
We've returned from the pandemic to fourth Sunday pot lucks. Alice and David Wells are our hosts who bring plates and flatware, set up the dishes, and then take home all the things that need to go through a dishwasher. UUCSV friends and members are good cooks, and guests are always welcome to this feast.
After a rainy night, the sun came out and it was warm enough for some of us to eat outside!
This was November's pot luck. When will it happen (or will it?) in December?
Tidings Notes
I'm so grateful for all the great energy at UCUSV, whenever I am part of any of the groups. These are smart, dedicated, thoughtful, hilarious, loving, and extraordinary people!
This month I want to especially thank Tina Rosato and Sue and Ken Stone who have done a great job proof-reading Tidings for the last couple of years. Welcome to Susan Moore and Alan Maddox who are joining the crew. This will give each proof-reader more breaks to meet their own schedules.
And considering the January Tidings newsletter...let's try again to have an "Open Topic."
By Barbara Rogers
Board Retreat Minutes:
Note: The next Regular Board meeting is December 1st @ 6:00 p.m. on Zoom. The minutes will be approved as submitted, and an abridged version will be posted on the bulletin board by the office.  The following Board meeting will be in person (weather permitting) January 26, 2023 at 6: p.m.
Here are the Board Retreat Minutes. Each subsection is given as a separate topic.
October 1, 2022
The Board of Trustees (BOT) met for a ½ day session to discuss issues of importance to our Congregation.  The main issues discussed focused on creating standardization in processes and process improvement across multiple areas of our organization.  
Topics discussed were the following:
1. Political Statements from the Pulpit
2. Updating the UUCSV Organizational Chart
3. Congregational Governance
4. Committee Leadership
5. UUCSV Annual Auction and How Proceeds are Allocated
6. UUCSV Membership Termination Process Review
7. Congregational Growth
1. Political Statements from the Pulpit
The September board meeting discussed feedback received from Congregants regarding political statements made from the pulpit.  There was concern voiced that some of the messaging from guest speakers may not be in alignment with our 8 Principles, as it focused too much on individual political figures as opposed to political ideas and ideals.  There was much discussion regarding the need to ensure that all speakers understand that the messages we desire espoused from the pulpit should primarily focus on the message, and not contain language that would denigrate named individuals.  Therefore, sermons should contain no personal or Party bashing.  Our goal as a congregation is to allow free thought and speech, understanding that all messages will not always resonate with all Congregants.  It is not our desire to censor the message, but to ensure that the message is always stated in a respectful manner.
Action Item:
The Sunday Service Associates Committee will be tasked with crafting messaging around this topic.  Once reviewed and adopted by the BOT, this messaging will be shared with all potential guest speakers.  In this way, they will be aware of our stance on tolerance of diversity in thought, but that the messaging needs to continue to be respectful to all, and in alignment with our 8 principles.
This topic will be revisited on an annual basis during the BOT retreat.
2. Updating the UUCSV Organizational Chart
The current Organizational Chart is out of date, so the BOT reviewed edits submitted by the current Chair of the Communications Committee. There was also significant discussion about Committee chair leadership (how chairs are selected, and whether there should be term limits on the chair position).   After review, the following recommendations were made by the BOT:
Action Items:
1. The Safety Committee will be a freestanding Operational Committee of UUCSV
2. The Music Director will directly report to the Minister and not to the BOT
3. It is preferable that both the Secretary and Treasurer officers be voting members of the BOT.  However, if there is no voting member who is willing to serve in either of those 2 roles, and if either of those two roles are filled by a congregant other than the 7 voting members of the BOT, then either of those two roles could be non-voting during that term.
4. Currently there is some misalignment between the By Laws, the Board of Trustees Orientation Manual and the Governance document that delineates Board of Trustees functions.  An ad hoc committee of BOT members will convene to review all 3 documents and propose appropriate changes within each to create appropriate alignment between the three documents.  
5. There will be a re-designation of the Nominating Committee as an “Ad Hoc” committee on the Organizational Chart.  This Committee will be made up of a subcommittee of members from the BOT and will convene when there is a need to fill either a Committee Chair or anticipated BOT vacancy due to expiration of term.
6. Committee chairs will be nominated by the Nominating Committee and final selection made by the BOT.  The initial term of a Committee Chair will be 2 years, with the option of extension.
7. The Governance Committee will be a subcommittee of members of the BOT.  This subcommittee will ensure that actions taken by the BOT are in alignment with our Bylaws and Governance documents.
8. The Open Table Group from the “Groups” designation on the Operational Committees Org Chart will be removed.
9. The Stewardship Committee will be added as a Standing Committee
10. The Auction Committee will be removed from Ad Hoc Committees on the Operational Committees Chart.
11. Auction/Fundraising will be added as bullets beneath the Stewardship Committee.
3. Congregational Governance
This segment of the BOT retreat focused on differentiating the true work of the BOT and how that work differs from what should take place at the committee level.  The BOT should serve as the governing body for the Congregation, with responsibility for ensuring that our work is in alignment with our Mission Statement and the 8 Principles, and also ensuring that UUCSV is perceived in a positive manner within our community.  This includes ensuring we remain fiscally sound as an organization, and growth oriented, so that longevity of our Congregation is assured. It was also determined that the BOT is responsible for ensuring that all Committees have appropriate leadership, and Committee Chairs don’t feel that they have accepted the role of Committee Chair indefinitely. The Committee’s work is to focus on all grassroots work that needs to occur to supports the Congregation.  They are responsible for receiving requests from either congregants or the BOT, thoroughly vetting those requests, and then presenting their analysis to the BOT on whether the committee believes that it is in our best interest to move forward with the request.  That analysis should include an analysis of potential positives and negatives to enacting an initiative, as well as resources necessary to support moving forward with the initiative (initial and potential ongoing fiscal costs or human resource investment necessary). An analysis document was put forward for review and accepted by the BOT (see attachment, found at the end of this report).
The BOT fFocused on ways to utilize our 90-minute monthly meetings to best advantage, including streamlining the monthly Committee reports.  A standardized Committee report document was submitted for approval and was accepted (see attachment, found at the end of this report).  
The BOT also discussed the fact that ideas and proposals  come to the BOT through inconsistent channels, and therefore may not be fully investigated and vetted prior to BOT discussion regarding acceptance of the proposal.  This lack of process has contributed to the BOT making decisions regarding asks from Committees that have not been fully vetted regarding the possible Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities or Threats of said proposal.  Recent decisions on a proposal from the Social Action Committee, and a proposal impacting the Building and Grounds Committee, are 2 good examples of where more complete study of the presented proposal may have resulted in a request for more information prior to making an affirmative decision.  
Action Items:
1. All proposals will be thoroughly vetted by the appropriate UUCSV Committee utilizing the SWOT analysis process prior to bringing to the BOT for review and approval.  This process will allow the Committee to perform the first pass at identifying whether the proposed action is something that would benefit our Congregation. All proposals must be presented to the BOT during a monthly BOT meeting by either the Committee Chair or a designee.  See the UUCSV Project Proposal form and the SWOT Power Point slides attachment at the end of this report.  Both the Project Proposal form and the output from the SWOT analysis must be completed for presentation to the BOT.
2. Committee Chair responsibilities will be defined to include::
a. Holding/Chairing meetings at a routine cadence (monthly, quarterly, or ad hoc based upon needs of the Congregation)
b. Preparating and submitting the monthly meeting report form no later than 1 week prior to the BOT monthly meeting.
c. Recruiting and orientingnew committee members, as well as creating of a description of the roles and responsibilities of committee members.
d. Completing an analysis regarding any activities engaged in by a UUCSV committee that either a) requires fiscal resources, or b) could potential affect how UUCSV is perceived by the greater community,
e. Acknowledging that all proposals must first be approved by the BOT. 
4. Committee Leadership
An overarching goal of the BOT is to recruit and retain skilled and accountable leaders for the Committees that support UUCSV.  However, it is also important to ensure that these willing leaders do not experience burnout in their leadership roles.  Some of the challenges to recruitment of leaders is thought to have arisen due to multiple issues:
1. Small to moderately sized congregation
2. Aging congregation
3. #1 and 2 leading to the same people having volunteered multiple times or for prolonged tenure, and subsequently experiencing burnout
4. Prolonged shutdown of in-person services due to Covid in 2020 and 2021, leading to new members feeling too unfamiliar to volunteer for leadership positions
5. Lack of clearcut guidelines around chair tenure, leading to congregants being unwilling to volunteer to lead a committee (the perception that you can’t give up your chair unless you find someone to fill it is very prevalent in our organization).
Therefore, the following action items were proposed and agreed upon by the BOT:
Action Items:
1. The BOT discussed and agreed to set term limits on the Committee Chair Role
a. Initial term of the Committee Chair will be 2 years
i. There is an option for renewal of a second 2-year term, based upon the successful completion of the first term as chair.
ii. 6 months prior to expiration of the first 2-year term, the Chairperson must give notice to the BOT of their desire to either continue as chair for an additional term, or to declare their intention to conclude their term as chair at the end of their 2-year commitment.
b. The Nominating Committee will publicize the upcoming Chair vacancy and will institute a call for nominations from our current membership.  This request for nominations will utilize all UUCSV communication vehicles currently in use:
i. The Current
ii. The weekly Board Member Welcome performed at the beginning of Sunday Service each week.
1. Messaging will include
a. 2-year commitment
b. Contact person(s) for parties interested in the role
c. Once a slate of candidates is formed, the Nominating Committee will engage in discussion with all candidates to ensure that they are familiar with the role and responsibilities and feel comfortable with their ability to lead that particular committee.  
d. If more than one candidate presents for a Committee Chair position, the Nominating Committee will evaluate the qualifications of all candidates and present the candidate(s) they feel will best fill the role.  The BOT will make the final decision on candidates ultimately offered for the Chair position. 
5. UUCSV Annual Auction and How Proceeds are Allocated
The UUCSV Annual Auction is the biggest fundraiser of the year for UUCSV, second only to the Pledge Drive.  Board members had questions about the inception of the Auction and how decisions were made regarding how the funds are used.  The following includes information shared by Larry Pearlman, Auction Chairman and decisions made:
1. Each year, the BOT determines the percentage split of final proceeds (after expenses) between UUCSV and another worthy organization.  The BOT will also determine if the Auction proceeds will be earmarked for a UUCSV special project or the General Operating budget.
2. The Congregation is polled each year to garner nominations for a worthy organization within our community to share the proceeds with us. Requests for submissions will be published in the Current in the weeks prior to the Annual Membership meeting in early summer. If the Congregation does not come forth with nominations, then the BOT will be presented a slate of possible recipients from the Auction Committee and the BOTwill make the final selection from that list.  Current community needs will more than likely be a major factor in choosing the final recipient.
3. The BOT will announce the community recipient of Auction proceeds at the Annual Congregational Meeting.
6. UUCSV Membership Termination Process Review
The BOT discussed our Membership Committee’s current processes for reconciling membership termination, and agree that their processes are in alignment with UUA standards.  We also were educated that keeping accurate active member metrics for reporting to UUA helps to determine our yearly dues allocation to UUA.  These standards are delineated in our congregational Bylaws.  
We also discussed ideas for member retention, including the institution of 2 new member engagement strategies:
1. The Minister will reach out to anyone who fills out a white card indicating that they would like to know more about our community.  Reverend Carter has already commenced this strategy.
2. The Membership Committee will do an outreach to new members within the first 90 days of membership to determine if we are meeting their needs, and to solicit feedback regarding their experience with UUCSV thus far
7. Congregational Growth
Discussion regarding current membership numbers and congregational growth illuminated the following realizations:
1. Since we have reopened to in-person services, attendance at UUCSV has been robust, with many visitors attending our services
2. Parking is at a premium on most Sundays that Reverend Carter is in the pulpit.  On those days, we know that some people do not stay for the service if they cannot secure adequate parking.
3. So far, we have not run out of seating space in the Sanctuary and have not had to resort to overflow seating in the Foyer.
4. To-date, new member growth and member attrition have been close to equal, so there has not been a significant net gain in new members.  However, with the significant number of visitors we are attracting each week, we are hoping that we will begin to see a net gain in our membership.
With those points in mind, the following suggestions were made by the BOT:
1. We will need to keep a keen eye on Parking issues on a weekly basis, to ensure that everyone who wants to participate in live services is able to secure parking.
2. If Parking does become a consistent problem, we will message in the Current and during the weekly announcements that when weather permits, attendees who are physically able might want to park at the 5/3 Bank a couple blocks South of UUCSV and walk to services.  This would provide close-in parking for our less physically abled membership.
3. If we begin to have consistent overflow into the Foyer for seating due to increased attendees at services, we will need to consider possibly having 2 services on Sunday.  The associated increased hours and employment costs of all UUCSV employees would also need to be considered in a determination of institution of a second Sunday service.
(not included with these minutes)
1. Organizational Charts
2. UUCSV Monthly Committee Report Form
3. Project Proposal Form (with completed SWOT Analysis) 
UUCSV Leadership

Board of Trustees: 
Rochelle Broome - President
Sally Smith - Vice-President
Larry Pearlman - Treasurer
Rose Levering 
Jackie Franklin
Marti Saltzman
Dan Hadley
Non-board officer:
Milt Warden – Secretary

Committee Chairs:
Building & Grounds - Deb Evenchik 
Social Action - Jane Carroll (rotating)
Finance - Lee Reading
Nominating - Evan Yanik
Congregational Care - Carolyn Shorkey
Membership - Heidi Blozan
Personnel – Linda Tatsapaugh
Communications - open
Governance – Evan Yanik
Religious Education - Contact RE Director Susan Enright Hicks
Coffee Hour Hosts Coordinator - Carolyn Shorkey
Sunday Service Associates - Diane Graham (rotating)
Strategic Planning Task Force - open
Memorial Garden - Dawn Wilson
Safety Committee - Marti Saltzman
Stewardship - Dan Hadley

Sunday Service Production:
AV producer/editor - Evan Yanik and Deb Evenchik
Music director and piano - Annelinde Metzner
Sue Stone, piano

Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Swannanoa Valley
500 Montreat Road
Black Mountain, NC 28711
(828) 669-8050 (email preferred during pandemic)
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UUCSV  •  500 Montreat Road  •  Black Mountain, NC 28711

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