Dear Unity Family,
Happy Holidays! All of us on the board of Unity Community of Central Oregon would like to take the opportunity as we celebrate the holidays and New Year to offer a huge heartfelt thank you. We appreciate all the time, energy, donations and bright light you bring to our community. We wouldn’t be here without YOU!
We also want to take this time to provide an update of 2021 and news for 2022.
Rev. Jane wanted to share with our community the following:
I’m discovering that my role as senior minister is changing. You’ve probably noticed that I’m not always up on the platform on Sunday mornings. This is very intentional, and it’s not because I’m secretly retiring. I believe that my highest role is to inspire others to lead from their brilliance. I count it as a great achievement that we have so many members of our community aspiring to become Unity ministers or licensed teachers; so many that are able to deliver an inspiring message; and so many able to serve as a host, gluing the service together smoothly. I am humbled to realize that it is rare, even in much larger spiritual communities, to have this level of leadership. “
While we see Jane each week as “our” Reverend, she is busy all year long participating in Regional and National Unity Conferences and Events, and serving on Boards. Although this is a big-time commitment for her, the energy she expends is returned to her and us all through her new ideas, and her expansion and creating even more positivity, love, and unity throughout all communities she touches.
Recent Survey Results
The Board sent out member surveys in October and we were delighted by the large number of responses we received. Such responsiveness shows how much you care about our Unity community.
Some of the responses we received:
- Unity feels safe, inspiring, and open to diversity.
- Guest speakers, classes, spirit groups and guest musicians are important to the growth of our services.
- Most of you are watching online and enjoying the quality of our live streams.
- Newsletters are the preferred means of communication (if you aren’t already getting them click HERE to sign up).
- Youth programs are important
All of us on the board have reviewed the surveys to ensure we continue to represent our member’s needs and wishes. We value the time and thoughtfulness that went into the responses. Based on your responses we’ve already implemented an “Ask the Minister” service, created a group exploring the return of our youth program, and added several requested classes. See the upcoming classes HERE.
Financial Summary for 2021
Average monthly income for 2021 is $12,000 as compared to $16,000 in 2020.
Average monthly expenses in 2021 are $15,400 as compared to $15,500 in 2020.
Our monthly income from donations has decreased by 30% since 2020 and it creates challenges for delivering our mission in our community. We realize that when people aren’t attending services in person and on a regular basis they may not feel as connected resulting in a decrease in regular giving. We are working on creative methods to overcome the downturn. We also realize the last 18 months have been difficult for many in different ways. We continue to make it easier to make donations online and think of innovative ways to keep our community connection strong in these new times.
The board was able to receive a second PPP grant this year of $8800, We have added two more paid positions this year (Clare Kubota as Operations Director and Cylvia Hayes as Spiritual Leader) increasing our payroll expenses. The board felt it was important to add these positions, as there was just too much on Rev. Jane’s plate for her to handle. To offset adding these positions we have kept our costs in line with previous years by reducing the budget in other areas we felt weren’t as important.
Board Member Recruitment
Next February we will have 4 of our 7 board members leaving because of ending terms or personal life changes. We currently have 3 excellent candidates. If you are interested in learning more about a commitment on the board please contact us HERE.
New Member Database
We have switched to a new database called Elvanto replacing Simple Church. It is more user friendly and will make it easier for you to see what’s going on, check on your donations, and stay in contact with other Unity members. If you have not yet logged in to Elvanto you can check it out HERE.
Unity Vision Update
At our 2019 and 2020 annual meetings we shared a big endeavor to explore whether or not we might want to purchase property and build a multi-organization campus. A big thank you to all who worked with us to see if this opportunity was a good fit. It didn’t pan out in a way that felt right for us, but the long-term vision still lives on, though the path has changed. Desert Sky Montessori, the school we share our property with, may be moving, and we are working on developing opportunities for the best use of the property. We feel there is tremendous potential for maximizing use of our existing property and it may even be possible for Unity to gain full ownership of it – stay tuned!
Cylvia has taken the lead in forming the ACT Ministry (Action, Compassion, Transformation), a passion that she shares with many of you. It really took off when Ande Cardwell stepped up to volunteer as our Community Engager and she and our generous volunteer community have been busy. You wouldn’t believe how many organizations we have supported in just a short time. Way to go Unity! If you are interested in being a part of this amazing group please contact Ande.
Pandemic burnout is affecting us all in a variety of ways. We feel this has led to a decrease in engagement, giving, and volunteering. Be ready- we will be working to change this! However, we have new in person attendees and online viewers just about every Sunday so we know the desire for spiritual growth and connection has not diminished.
Thank you for taking the time to read and watch. We are living our mission. Our local community continues to grow and we are shining our beautiful light as each of us steps forward to participate fully from a place of love, service, creativity, and brilliance. We are honored to be on this ride with all of you!
With love and big blessings,
Rev. Jane Hiatt
Board President Clare Kubota
Board VP Cylvia Hayes
Secretary George LeMagie
Treasurer Susan Warnick