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During the 2019-20 year, UUAA engaged in deep and wide discussion about who we are as a congregation and how we want to travel together in the decades to come. The data we gathered affirmed our appreciation for community connections that run throughout our wonderful music programs, our inspiring Sunday Services, our vibrant youth programs and our wide-ranging commitments to social justice causes. We decided that to build on our past, tap into energy for current issues and address the issues that will most impact our future, we should focus our resources and energy on three overlapping issues:

  • Climate Justice/ Environmentalism
  • Anti-racism/ Anti-oppression
  • Radical Welcome.

 

In June, 2020, the Vision 20/50 team submitted this report titled  'A Congregational Vision,' to the Board and the Congregation. This is a document the vision team wrote in your collected words to describe the Vision for UUAA.

Download or View: A Congregational Vision (May, 2020)

 

Remember those Visioning Sessions in the fall of 2019? All of that input from congregants was distilled into a comprehensive document called the Theory of Change, which is the basis for the Vision document. If you want to review that work: Theory of Change: Download PDF  or View the TOC with added explanation

 

GA Workshop: At the 2020 UUA General Assembly our vision team, along with consultant Elandra Williams, presented a workshop on working together to build a vision, titled "Visioning and Governance Can Be Inclusive, Equitable, Co-owned". This is a link to the video recording of the workshop:  https://vimeo.com/showcase/7462757/video/433048976

 


The words the vision team collected were also used to draft a mission statement, vision statement and statement of purpose for UUAA. These statements will receive more congregational discussion during the next year. Download or view the draft Mission/ Vision/ Purpose Statements

 


 

What happens next? Action Planning is Underway

Time to get to work on our vision! A Vision Steering Committee, led by congregants Rick Witten and Kathy Edgren will be providing more information soon, but projects are already in planning or started in all three vision areas. Watch your newsletter, bulletin and this website to learn more. And make sure that any UUAA groups you belong to are discussing how to be part of the action.

 

Pictured below -- A Virtual Social Justice Roundtable discussed how our many social justice groups might align their work with the vision described in A Congregational Vision. Zoom session discussions allowed specific groups and all interested congregants to provide feedback on the draft Vision document. Revisions were then incorporated into the final document. Over 300 congregants contributed to this vision.

 Zoom Social Justice Roundtable  Social Justice Roundtable

 

 


Review of the Visioning Process

During the 2019-20 year, we were all deeply involved in creating a vision of the future of UUAA, a guiding plan for how we can best use our resources to build a loving and resilient community and live our values in the wider world..UUAA's Vision 20/50 project has tried to hear all perspectives -- our youth, elders, teachers, social justice activists, music program enthusiasts, men's groups, women's groups... Everyone's views are important in guiding our journey together.

Process for Hearing from Everyone

In the Fall and Winter, 2019 we held Visioning Sessions that guided attendees through a set of questions about what we value and what we would like to see in the future of UUAA. Over 300 people took part in either a Visioning Session or an online survey of similar questions. From that large set of information, a document called the Theory of Change captured a distillation of our shared values, aspirations, things that make us unique, things that challenge us and more. The Theory of Change included a number of compelling issues congregants wanted to pursue. Congregants then ranked these issues. The Vision leadership then took all of the information and created the document, A Congregational Vision.

 

After the congregation ranked action areas of the Theory of Change, a clearer vision emerged, showing three priorities we are committed to engage with: Climate Justice, Anti-Racism/ Anti-Oppression and Radical Welcome.

To learn more about how this Vision evolved, please watch this video:

 

 

How were all of those Visioning Session sticky notes analyzed?

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The Vision 20/50 Leadership Team, the Board of Trustees, the UUAA staff, an Analysis Team and of course, our consultant, were all involved in looking at the ideas that so many congregants, SGD youth and staff members contributed and creating the "UUAA Theory of Change"-- a big-picture vision for how UUAA can deepen our ties as a community and broaden our impact on the world. This was not a trivial job! 

Interested in how the analysis happened?

Use this link to see an explanation of the analysis.

[The Vision 20/50 Analysis Team is led by Vision 20/50 co-chair Rick Witten and is made up of volunteers: Vanessa Campbell, Bobbi Coluni, Edie Croake, Constance Dickinson, Lorraine Gutierrez, Dixie Hibner, Beth Hospadaruk, Laura Johnstone, Jeannine LaPrad, Sam Lewis, Lissa Oliver and Sandy Simon.]

 

 


Why are we taking time for visioning?

To find out why, take 49 seconds to watch this video.

 

 

It feels like UUAA is at a threshold. Sound, values-driven planning has served us well in the past -- We now have a beautiful, energy efficient, accessible building on 46 acres of rolling land. We have a creative and talented staff, a core of dedicated lay leaders and over 600 adult members with abundant energy and passion. Thanks to a strong search effort, shaped by our Core Values, we have an inspiring new Senior Minister. Let's build an awesome future on this solid foundation.

 

 Our Consultant-- Elandria Williams

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Consultant Elandria Williams will be guiding us through our visioning project. Elandria is currently co-moderator for the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA). She visited our congregation in March to get to know more about us and facilitate the purpose/ visioning work design and returned in November to work on data analysis. A skilled facilitator and leader, Elandria works internationally and locally with communities in developing and living fully into vision and purpose. 

Elandria came to Ann Arbor to get us started with a design workshop the week end of March 8th/9th. About 40 UUAA leaders took part in the 2-day high energy workshop. She is making regular visits in person and electronically throughout the year.

Read Elandria's Phase I/ Phase2 interim report on Vision 20/50 by clicking this link.

 

Elandria worked with Rev. Dr. Lisa Presley (MidAmerica Region) and Rev. Carlton Smith (Southern Region) to document the visioning process UUAA is piloting so that it can be used at other UU congregations. Our Vision 20/50 process was presented as a workshop at the 2020 General Assembly.

 

 

 

 

From the Vision 20/ 50 Co-Chairs

Thank you to hundreds of congregants for your deep involvement in this huge endeavor!


Rick Witten and Laura Bollettino, co-chairs of Vision 20/50

 

 


Visioning Resources

In thinking about where UUAA should be headed in the next decades, you may want to review some of the following:

Our Core Values - How should we bring these alive in our work?

Our History - What are we proud of that we would like to do more of in the future?

Mayor's Proclamation and Partner Organization Appreciations on our 150th Anniversary in 2015

Our current strategic plan (2016-2020) - What haven't we finished? What should come next?

 

 If you have a question or suggestion, you can contact the Vision Project Co-Chairs using this form.