Many newcomers say they first come to Neighborhood Church seeking “community.” As our lives grow and evolve, many of us are increasingly isolated. A study published in 2006 by the American Sociological Review reported a significant increase in loneliness. People are experiencing a greater level of isolation than ever before. Humans are social beings – we need community in the same way we need food and shelter.
We often find that there has been some sort of catalyst in newcomers’ lives that prompts them to seek a spiritual home. It could be the birth of a child, new marriage, home relocation, divorce, illness, or other life-changing events. It is important that you make a commitment to create reflection, quiet time each Sunday to attend service. In time, you will find that you are ready to add additional elements to your spiritual practice. Exploring specific topics at a lecture or speaker’s forum is one way. Joining a Chalice Circle, small groups of church members who meet regularly to explore UU topics and personal connections, is another route. The benefits of rolling up your sleeves to volunteer for one of our numerous Social Justice projects or helping out with our Youth Religious Education program are numerous. However you get involved, connecting with other Church members and making Neighborhood your community is vital to a full and rich life at Church.
Neighborhood Unitarian Universalist Church creates and grows an inclusive religious community connected by love, spirit and service. Once you’ve decided you’d like to make Neighborhood Church your spiritual home and become a member, you can take steps:
- Attend a New to Neighborhood Class This Newcomer orientation grounds visitors in the Unitarian Universalist tradition, as well as in this congregation, providing details on how to get involved. This one-hour orientation is offered every first Sunday of the month at 1 p.m. in the Neighborhood House Living Room.
- Attend a Bridging Group This two-session program deepens visitors’ connection to this faith tradition, as well as connecting folks with others on the same journey. This program is offered quarterly in July, October, January and March. Upcoming Bridging Classes: October 14 & 21, January 13 &20; March 10 & 17. Additional details will be provided in the e-newsletter, on the website, and during Sunday service.
- Complete a Membership Card and make a pledge Once you’ve taken the newcomer and bridging sessions, and been steeped in the tradition and congregation, you’re welcome to take the final step of signing your name into our membership book. Members are the lifeblood of the congregation, and each has a role in sustaining it. Members have the ability to vote in the annual meeting, lead classes, and much more. We also ask members to provide what they can financially through our annual pledge to support the operation and programs of Neighborhood.
- Participate in a New Member ceremony. Held quarterly, the new member ceremony occurs during Sunday service and acts as the covenant between new members and the rest of the congregation. This is a special ritual that cements your new connection and belonging here at Neighborhood Unitarian Universalist Church. Upcoming new member Sundays are:
- September 20
- February 3
- May 5
Questions? Contact ZaNyaa Lee, Membership and Community Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org
As a newcomer, a great way to explore Neighborhood Church is getting involved in some of our groups and activities. We have many, many groups and activities that you are welcome to join, these groups are particularly good for newcomers. Our Membership and Stewardship Assistant Liz Murphy or Welcome Table Sunday Volunteers can help you find the right group and answer any questions you may have. Check out the calendar listings for more information.
Newcomer Gatherings & Events
- New to Neighborhood: orientation class held throughout the year
- Newcomer & new member potlucks
- Bridging Groups: two-week long introduction to the Church and Unitarian Universalism
Social Groups & Events
- Neighborhood People of Color: activities and discussion that address issues of diversity. Meets on the 4th Sunday of the month after 2nd service
- Dining For Dollars: member-hosted meals and activities throughout the year (proceeds benefit the Church)
- Circle Suppers: potluck dinners hosted by Church members in their home. A great way to meet new & long term members as well as visitors & friends
- Camp de Benneville Pines: summer & winter camp in San Bernardino Mountains
- Neighborhood Chorus: Sing at 1st or 2nd service; Thursday evening rehearsals at 7:15 p.m. in Room 21
- Neighborhood Bell Choir: Monday night rehearsals at 7:00 p.m. in Room 21
- Social Justice Knitting: every other Wednesday evening
- Esperanza home-building in Tijuana every Fall and Spring
- Green Council: environmental initiatives. Meets on the 2nd Sunday of the month between services.
- White People for Racial Justice of San Gabriel Valley. Meets on the 3rd Thursday of the month in the evening.
Sunday Morning Volunteers
- Welcome Table hosts & greeting
- Coffee committee
- Ushers & Greeters
- Sound & Lighting
Discussion & Covenant Groups
- The GLOBE Forum: Discuss current events and recent Economist issue. Meets on the 1st Sunday of the month between services
- Chalice Circles: our small group ministry program. Groups meet once a month.
- Sailors of Sadness: Meets every 3rd Tuesday of the month in the evening.
- Creative Meditation: meets every Friday
- 60 & Up Singles Group: meets on the 3rd Sunday of the month after 2nd Service
- Writing as a Spiritual Activity: Meets every Sunday after 2nd Service
- Shakespeare Discussion: Monthly discussion group meets on the 2nd Sunday of the month after 2nd Service
For more information, visit our web calendar HERE