Regionalization – Benefits to Local Congregations

Last month I talked about the many efforts in which UUs are involved on a global level. This month I’d like to focus on what is happening within our New England (NE) UUA Region.

To give you a brief history, after the Unitarian and Universalist merger a number of geographical districts were created throughout the country to ensure that congregations had a more “local” presence within the UUA. In our UU rich area of greater Boston, Melrose was a member of the Massachusetts Bay District which encompassed between 50 and 60 churches at various times. The boundaries were a bit jagged and stretched roughly from Milton to Newburyport and west to Framingham. The Clara Barton district included churches in central and western Massachusetts, and dipped down into Connecticut. The Ballou Channing district was south of Boston including Cape Cod and west into Rhode Island. Northern New England included Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.

Over the past several years, the benefits of collaboration and consolidation of districts became more attractive across the country. With improvements in technology and the appeal of sharing resources, many districts embraced the concept of regionalization. Today, the NE Region’s main offices are based in Watertown and they provide services to all four geographical districts. This year they are offering over 40+ in-person and online workshops in areas such as Our Whole Lives (OWL), lay pastoral care, leadership development, and stewardship. They also provide assistance in ministerial transitions, conflict transformation, justice ministry, and staff and board retreat planning.

I encourage you to check out the Region’s site and look over the many resources they offer to our New England congregations: http://www.uua.org/new-england

In fellowship,

Nancy N.

Denominational Affairs