Annual Report for Worship Committee 2020-2021
Committee Chair: Richard McLeod
1st year of term
Committee Members: Peck Drennan, Rebecca Drennan, Marc Drews, Anna Hamilton, Richard McLeod, Pat Mohr, Connie Quirk, Larry Siegel, John Starino, Judy Turnipseed. Contributors: Linda Brennison, Karen Brown, Rod Brown, Scott Sargent, Mckenzie Scott. Board liaison: Jessica Kross. Ex-officio: Stephen Robinson.
- Major accomplishments this year.
By far, our major accomplishment this year was to establish an effective method of delivering Sunday services in the face of the Covid-19 sequestering. Particular appreciation goes to Phil Turner and Marc Drews for guidance through the technological requirements.
Per the UUCC By-laws, the main function of the Worship Committee is to provide guest speakers when the minister is not in the pulpit. With Rev. Robinson’s guidance we filled the calendar with a variety of appropriate speakers to supplement his sermons. A list of potential speakers continues to be maintained and expanded.
Even with restrictions to virtual interaction, elements of a traditional service were maintained or adjusted to fit a videoconferencing format. Service leaders coordinated the service, with special participation by chalice lighters, community Share the Plate representatives, and musical guests invited by Music Director Anna Hamilton. Attendance was counted at each service.
This committee has had input into designing and installing a new sound system, enhancing quality, dispersion, and volume of sound. Plans have been made to set the groundwork for video and audio streaming.
The committee and church members were kept apprised on the committee’s progress through agendas, notes, committee reports, budget requests, attendance counts, and an annual report.
The committee serves as one of the sounding boards for the minister when input is needed for directions and details of church activities and general UUCC direction.
- Please briefly describe any factors that facilitated or impeded your work this year.
A factor that facilitated our work was the Committee contributors, formally and not formally on the committee, who attended and made valuable suggestions.
Rev. Stephen Robinson exhibited the leadership and the flexibility required to maintain smooth operation and scheduling of Sunday services. He was always willing to step in to fill any gap and to offer helpful coordinating advice.
Something that impeded our work was the Covid-19 pandemic, but problems caused by that were efficiently overcome through Zoom videoconferencing. Our venue became virtual rather than in-person, so this impediment was only temporary. Having meetings on Zoom could be viewed as an advantage because attendance was potentially larger, allowing out-of-town visitors, and certainly more convenient for many.
- Any special initiatives continuing into the next program year.
Having meetings on Zoom encouraged better attendance at committee meetings. Afternoon meetings seem to be more desirable for those who hesitate to drive at night for in-person meetings.
A variety of appropriate music from UUCC and guest musicians has enhanced the service. The music coordinator has been very adept at providing those and relating them to the topic of each service.
Through messages from the minister and guest speakers we will continue to address adherence to UU principles as well as current national and social issues. Seasonal and multi-generational services will be continued.
In addition to planning and maintaining a calendar of services. We continue to provide advance publication data about upcoming services for posting on the website and weekly events.
- Future dreams or long-range plans for the committee.
We dream of a capital plan for upgrading the sanctuary: expanded seating, designated area for choirs, and additional improvements.
The Worship Committee would like to be part of plans for increasing membership, like variety and publicity of services, and services that appeal to younger people or those of racial diversity.
- Constraints on accomplishing these plans.
Difficulty in finding new members on the committee has always been a challenge. While we have received valuable input from the CYRE director and committee, we would like to have more young people.
Respectfully submitted: Richard McLeod