Register Now for Beyond Categorical Thinking Workshop and Cottage Meetings

Sep 11, 2021 | Members Only, Ministerial Search

Dear East Shore Members & Friends,

The Ministerial Search Committee is inviting you to participate in two important online events:
• Ministerial Search Cottage Meetings: September 19, 22, 26, & 30.
• Beyond Categorical Thinking Workshop: October 1-2

Read below for details on each:

Cottage Meetings: Happening This Month

Everyone is invited to attend one of several online cottage meetings which will take place during the last two weeks of September. We will use breakout rooms in the meetings to ensure small enough groups so that everyone will get a chance to participate. Participants will discuss with others in their group what they believe are the strengths, needs, and aspirations of our church community. There will be a representative of the committee to facilitate and take notes.

Please register HERE for the date you plan to attend!

  • Sunday, September 19 (12:00 pm – 1:00 pm)
  • Wednesday, September 22 (7:00 pm – 8:00 pm)
  • Sunday, September 26 (12:00 pm – 1:00 pm)
  • Thursday, September 30 (7:00 pm – 8:00 pm)

Beyond Categorical Thinking: October 1 & 2


Chances are, you thought of both. And distinct images perhaps came to mind. In terms of a minister, what images came to mind? Was it a person of a particular gender, race, or age?

Beyond Categorical Thinking (BCT) is a highly recommended part of the search process for our congregation. (see registration details at the bottom of this email). The UUA Transitions office states that prospective ministers look favorably on congregations which have engaged in this workshop. In finding the person who would be the best match for our minister, we could potentially overlook or even let biases keep us from knowing that a particular person would be the best match for us.

Other congregations have assumed that their ideal minister looks a certain way, and often ministers who are not white or male or heterosexual or able-bodied or of a particular age or class are discounted and seen as “less than” in some ways.

Credentialed ministers in our faith who are People of Color, LGBTQ+, disabled, young, old, working class, etc. still face discrimination as part of the ministerial search process. In our efforts to find the best match, our congregation will host a BCT workshop on October 1 and 2, and a worship service on October 3.

We will have a UUA trainer come and meet with our Search Committee, facilitate the workshop conversations, and lead the Sunday service, where we will have a chance to examine how we can avoid letting prejudice become a part of our search process. Our Search Team is particularly pleased to have Amanda Schuber as our trainer because she has led this workshop many times, is standing for her final ministerial exam this fall, and was the Search Team’s retreat coach.

Attending this workshop is yet another way for us to put our faith into lived experience and improve the odds that, regardless of identity, we will find the minister who is the best match for us and who will serve us well. This opportunity allows the entire congregation fuller participation in the search process. It will allow us to explore our hopes and concerns for a new minister, learn more about the search process, and recognize our own biases (both personal and congregational) to expand our choices in this search.

Please register HERE and mark your calendars for East Shore’s virtual BCT workshop on October 1, 7-8:30 PM and October 2, 10-11:30 AM.

Once registered you will receive a zoom link for the workshop.


Congregational Survey: Deadline September 21

Everyone is strongly encouraged to take the Congregational Survey. This survey is an opportunity for members to share information about themselves, their relationship with East Shore, and their hopes and concerns for our future as a community. Please complete by September 21. Please contact the office if you would like a physical copy of the survey mailed to you.

ESUC Ministerial Search Committee