Program Council and Committees
The best way to find out more about our church and Unitarian Universalism is to get involved in some of the many activities, committees, groups and educational programs that are available. Consider volunteering for an activity like the Service Auction, Second Sunday Concert Series, Spaghetti Dinner, Native Plant Sale or a church work party, to name a few. You can volunteer to be an usher or greeter for one service or several. There are many interesting opportunities to meet people, share an interest, or make a difference both inside and outside the church family. The gift of your time and talent to the shared ministry of our church will nourish your spirit.
Take a moment, talk to our membership committee (they have a table after each service), our minister, a greeter or anyone drinking coffee who looks like they’ve been here a while. You’ll be glad you did… and so will we!
Committees are an important part of the life of the church and one of the main vehicles for living out our mission and goals.
Standing Committees have charges included in the bylaws. The chairs of standing committees except for the Nominating Committee, the Personnel Committee and the Committee on Ministry are elected by the congregation at the Annual Meeting from a slate prepared by the Nominating Committee; the term of office is one year, beginning immediately after the Annual Meeting. The Nominating and Personnel Committees and the Committee on Ministry choose their own chairs. Below is a partial list of committees and groups. If you think it sounds interesting contact the chair. Or, if you have another passion discuss starting a new group with membership.
Pat Herring, Chair
The Building Use Committee, a sub-committee of Finance, works with the administrator and sexton to set rental prices and rules for renters. We ensure that the building meets the minimum requirements for rental use.
Margo Dixon (left) and Beth Taylor (right), Co-Chairs
Church Family arranges the support for members and friends to help them through difficult situations. It is dedicated to service within our own church community during times of need or crisis. The committee will coordinate volunteer help from the congregation to respond to situations which already exist or which arise. In cooperation with the congregation, the committee acts as a loving family, extending a hand to members and friends in times of need.
Janice Lovegrove (Left), and Tom Zimmerman (Right) Co-Chairs
The Long-Range Planning Committee coordinates the strategic and long range planning for the church. The By-Laws require the committee to assess the goals of the church and propose programs to meet those goals. They present their findings annually at the Annual Meeting.
Committee on Ministry (COM)
Karen West, Chair
The COM is a communication channel between the congregation and the minister and strives to develop and sustain a healthy ministry at the UUCLV. We observe congregational life and provide a sounding board for the congregation and minister to exchange ideas on providing a strong shared ministry. Ministerial activities of the Church include professional leadership, religious education, worship, social justice, pastoral care, and church family concerns.
Jane Benning, Chair
The Communications Committee is responsible for communicating and promoting the activities and programs of the church within the membership and to the larger community via newspaper articles, our website, and in-house newsletter.
Tom Repasch, Chair
Denominational Affairs is responsible for informing the members and friends of the UUCLV about the mission and structure of the denomination and, to provide the members and friends of the UUCLV the opportunity to participate in the programs and events of the UUA and its affiliated organizations.
Allen Zinnes, Chair
Finance with the assistance of the Treasurer, keeps informed about and advises, the Board and Congregation on all financial matters of the Church. The Finance Committee prepares the annual budget, supervises the raising of funds and is responsible for arranging the periodic audit of Church finances.
Renae Orban, Chair
The Hospitality committee arranges for volunteers for Sunday morning greeters, ushers, flowers and coffee hour snacks. They also provide volunteers for set up and clean up for new member potlucks and special services.
Cari Poole, Chair
Membership arranges to welcome visitors, inform new members about the activities of the Church, and prepare, distribute and maintain an up-to-date directory of members. The committee keeps the Minister and the Board informed of any individuals seeking to become more active in the Church. Annually, the Membership Committee reviews and updates the membership record and submits a report of changes to the Board of Trustees.
Janice Galassi, Chair
The Music Committee is responsible for the music which complements and enhances Sunday worship services and other Church occasions/events by hiring, coordinating and /or enlisting musicians as needed. Music, vocal and instrumental, is an essential part of our worship services. Each service includes hymns selected from the eclectic collection in our hymnbook, “Singing the Living Tradition.” Hymns and choral selections sung by our Beacon choir, as well as musical offerings of local instrumentalists, are chosen to enhance the special themes of our service.
Sue Weber, Chair
The Nominating Committee prepares and presents to the membership at the Annual Meeting a slate of candidates for the expiring positions on the Board of Trustees, the chairs of standing committees and the Nominating Committee. This committee actively seeks individuals for inclusion on the slate of candidates from those members who have demonstrated interest and participated in the life of the Church. The Nominating Committee seeks, on an on-going basis, individuals for the membership of various Church committees.
The Personnel Committee develops personnel policies for Board administration of all Church staff except the Minister. It acts as a liaison between the staff and the Board regarding employment contracts and conditions of employment. The Committee also advertises and fills staff vacancies as they arise. The staff currently includes the Administrator, the Lifespan Education Coordinator, the Member/Volunteer Coordinator and the Sexton. The Minister and a representative of the Board are ex-officio members of the Committee.
Dora Davenport, Chair
Property is responsible for the care and maintenance of the buildings, furnishings, equipment and grounds of the Church. It keeps the Board and the congregation apprised of any property needs and concerns.
Laura Elmore (Left) and Jeanine Burd (Right), Co-Chairs
The RE Committee guides programs and activities for the children and youth. The Committee consists of adult and youth representatives of the UUCLV. The Committee works with the Lifespan Education Coordinator to organize the Sunday morning programs for children and youth from pre-Kindergarten up to Senior High. Traditionally, children and youth have actively participated in intergenerational Sunday services twice per year (RE Sunday and Youth Sunday); this year, at least two intergenerational services are planned.
Open position, Chair
The Adult Religious Education committee coordinates and sponsors programs to increase our capacity, as both individuals and as a community, to understand, relate to and enjoy our world in the context of our individual and communal spiritual quests.
Beth Taylor (Left) and Nancy Weston (Right), Co-Chairs
The Social Action Committee is involved in projects and issues ranging from the homeless to the environment. Working individually, in small sub-groups, or in plenum, the Committee focuses on diverse issues as circumstances direct. A continuing project from year to year is to contribute to local drop-in centers through our Food Bank. Many members work in local soup kitchens, teach in literacy programs, and do special tutoring or counseling in the area. In general, the Committee tries to respond to issues raised on the local scene and to encourage social activism within the Congregation. Meetings are open to all (church members and non-members) and are held on the second Monday, 7pm.
Karen West, Chair
The Stewardship Committee is charged with the overall welfare and well-being of the church. This rewarding endeavor is performed by soliciting both financial and volunteer work contributions from church members during the annual Stewardship Campaign.
Sarah Carlson Summer, Chair
The Worship Committee plans the schedule of services with the Minister and coordinates services when the Minister is away. Committee members type the order of service, care for the sanctuary, coordinate ushers, and support the Music Committee. The Minister and the Worship Committee consider suggestions from the congregation and discuss, develop, and communicate theories and styles of worship.
Activities and Programs
The audio-visual group provides sound for our service and other activities, such as weddings. We operate a video camera during services so that our “second sanctuary” can view the service.
Pat Herring (Left), Kathy Stagl (Right), Co-Chairs
This group meets monthly after the service. See ENews or The UU-Link for more information regarding the book of the month, date and times of meeting.
Larry Lipkis, Director
The Beacon Choir is an intergenerational group of members and friends led by our music director and/or volunteers as needed. The music spans many styles from Renaissance to contemporary, sacred to secular, serious to light-hearted [classical, jazz, and folk], [Western and Global]. There are no auditions, but participation does require the commitment of time. The Choir rehearses in the sanctuary every Wednesday from 7:00 to 8:30pm and provides choral music for about 2 services per month.
Cari Poole, Chair
Each Sunday from 8:45AM – 10AM, the UUCLV Breakfast Forum meets in the Community Room over bagels and coffee before regular Sunday service. The group welcomes presentations on topics of spiritual, ethical or philosophical interest and discussion is encouraged. Topics over the past years have included: the study of different religious beliefs, including myths and alternative religious views; science and religion; music; the arts; ecology; and social action.
The Capital Projects Committee is responsible for implementing projects in the congregational approved long range plan. The committee is responsible for project planning. contractor selection, and project management/implementation. Typical projects have included restoration of the sanctuary roof, restoration of exterior masonry wall, community room remodeling, installation of handicapped accessible bathrooms, and installation of and handicapped accessible elevator.
From December through March, The UUCLV joins with other churches in the Bethlehem area to provide shelter for people with no other place to be sheltered. We cook or purchase food, show movies, lend a listening ear, and provide a safe place to rest during some of the coldest days of winter.
Ilse Stoll Zinnes, Chair
Green Sanctuary Committee creates a more sustainable and environmentally-friendly world by making our church buildings greener, raising awareness in the congregation about living more lightly on the earth through education and service projects, and by becoming a model of environmental stewardship in the Lehigh Valley. We have influenced improved building efficiency and energy conservation in the church.
A group for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender & questioning youth between the ages of 14-20, which meets every Wednesday at 7 pm. This is a community wide program. Membership in this Church is not required. Youth who consider themselves allies are also encouraged to attend.
The Heritage Society’s mission is to recognize and honor those people who contribute $1000 or more to the church Endowment Fund either as an outright gift or bequests in their will or by establishing trusts, annuities, etc. for the benefit of the Church. Members of the Heritage Society may be recognized by name or kept anonymous, at the request of the donor. If you qualify to become a member or wish to establish a bequest of some kind, contact the Heritage Society committee.
This group is open to all UUCLV men and friends. The group meets monthly, rotating hosts and homes, to discuss a topic of interest and share a potluck meal.
Ilse Stoll Zinnes
The diverse musical talent of the Lehigh Valley is on display for a series of five concerts ranging from classical to jazz. These concerts are well attended by the community at large. Concerts start at 3pm. For more information: email@example.com or 610-866-7652.
The annual service auction is our top fundraiser. Members and friends donate goods and services, which are bid on by those in attendance. This family fun event includes a potluck dinner, live, silent, and sign-up auction categories. The event is about raising money, but also enhancing community friendships and relationships. Donating goods or services is a creative way for you to help your beloved community. Many auction items create opportunities to meet new friends and get to know old friends even better. Childcare is available.