Community Outreach Ministry
Living at the Intersection of Faith and Justice
The Community Outreach Ministry Teams were created to further the ministry of Unity Church in service to the larger community. The teams listed here have been selected as opportunities through which the congregation can engage in service, education, and advocacy to the larger community through this outreach ministry.
For more information or to volunteer with any team or project, please contact the people listed at the end of each description or Lisa Friedman, Minister of Congregational and Community Engagement, at the church office at 651-228-1456 or email@example.com.
Affordable Housing Ministry Team
This team is committed to public policy advocacy that will lead to systemic affordable housing change by partnering with other congregations through the Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative. The team sponsors direct service opportunities through Habitat for Humanity and Project Home and offers congregational forums on issues of homelessness and affordable housing.
Contact: Lisa Friedman at 651-228-1456 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Project Home: “I was hungry and you fed me…” During the month of May, Unity Church becomes ‘home’ each night for homeless families in Ramsey County. Project Home is coordinated by Interfaith Action of Greater St. Paul to provide overflow shelter for homeless families when the beds at the Ramsey County Family Service Center in Maplewood are filled to capacity. Over 100 Unity volunteers are needed to participate in this ministry of hospitality, helping to provide a safe place and comfort to homeless families with children during their stay at Unity Church. Contact: email@example.com.
Evergreen Projects Ministry Team
The Evergreen Projects at Unity Church hold monthly food drives for the Hallie Q Brown Foodshelf and support the Jeremiah Program that has a St. Paul community residential campus for low-income single mothers and their children. The Evergreen Quilters Group provides “joyful fundraising” for the team projects through the making and selling of handmade quilts. Evergreen Quilters invite all quilting skill levels to their ministry and are will to help teach new quilters.
Contact: Karen Buggs at 651-297-0111 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Generosity Ministry Team
This team facilitates the giving of the weekly Sunday Offering to non-profit organizations working for the greater wellbeing of our communities. Congregational input forms the core of this giving process (the online nomination form can be found at: http://www.unityunitarian.org/generosity-ministry.html.) Church members are encouraged to recommend potential recipients – a typical offering about is between $1500-$2500 for the organization receiving it. The Generosity Ministry Team meets monthly to review and recommend recipients to the Unity Church Executive Team for approval.
Contact: Richard Buggs at 651-222-7222
Gun Sense Ministry Team
The purpose of this ministry is to empower Unity Church and its membership to be active citizens in this process of dialogue and creation of policy. Unity's Gun Sense Ministry Team partners with Protect Minnesota, the only independent state-focused organization working for reasonable gun safety policy solutions in Minnesota. The team urges members to look at their website and to join the organization.
Contact Sue Conner at email@example.com or Joan Duke at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mano a Mano Team (Spanish for “Hand to Hand”) Ministry Team
This ministry team supports the work of Mano a Mano International Partners, a non-profit organization founded in 1994 by Segundo and Joan Velasquez, long-time members of Unity Church. It is dedicated to building infrastructure for health care, education, transportation and economic development in rural Bolivia. Mano a Mano works in bilateral partnership with three Bolivian counterpart organizations: Mano a Mano-Bolivia with its focus on health and education; Mano a Mano Nuevo Mundo which builds roads and water projects; and Apoyo Aereo, providing air transport and air rescue to remote areas. The program also obtains donations of surplus medical equipment and supplies, destined to be discarded here, and transports them to 100 facilities in Bolivia where local communities manage the clinics and health care needs.
Contact: Andrea Bond at 651-292-003 or email@example.com
Obama School Ministry Team
Unity Church partners with the Barack & Michelle Obama Elementary School in a variety of ways. The team recruits and provides tutors, library volunteers, teacher appreciation events, art support, and more. The team also organizes the Friends of Obama School Cub Foods gift card program.
Contact Marty Rossman at firstname.lastname@example.org
Partner Church Ministry Team
The intent of the Partner Church Team is to develop a mutually rewarding relationship between the Unity Church community and that of our sister church in Homorodszentpeter, Transylvania, in Romania. The area of Romania, which contains our sister church, is the birthplace of Unitarianism in Europe. This partnership was begun in 1990 after the fall of the Communist regime made such associations possible. Since then over 100 individuals from Unity Church have visited the village and many have hosted visitors from the village. Pilgrimage trips from Unity Church have included visits to historical sites relevant to Unitarianism.
Contact: Hal Freshley at 651-778-8765 or email@example.com
Racial and Restorative Justice Ministry Team
Unity's Racial and Restorative Justice Team advocates for justice and so help heal the world. The team acknowledges the importance of every voice to restorative and racial justice, in interracial healing, and in building Beloved Community. Community Partners include Amicus (now part of Volunteers of America), the Rondo Circle of Peace Movement, the Second Chance Coalition and the Children’s Defense Fund Summer Freedom School.
Contact: Lisa Friedman at 651-228-1456 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Rainbow Chalice Alliance Ministry Team
The purpose of the Rainbow Chalice Alliance Ministry Team is to actively support LGBTQ youth. Team members want to create a world in which every youth learns to respect and accept all people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender/ identity expression. They create and foster safe space and access to supportive adults, advocate for safe and respectful school environments and increase awareness of the community at-large of the needs of LGBTQ youth. Community partners include the Minnesota School OUTreach Coalition (MNSOC), Out for Equity, and Transforming Families. Team activities have included serving as hosts at Q-Quest, a yearly gathering of LGBTQ MN youth, volunteering at the Queer Prom, and participating in the Twin Cities Pride Parade.
Contact: Mike Huber at email@example.com or 612-825-7648
Sanctuary Ministry Team
As part of a metro-wide effort through the ISAIAH organization, this brand new team is readying Unity Church to be a Sanctuary congregation, should that be needed.
Contact: Janne Eller-Isaacs at 651-228-1456 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Sustainable Living Ministry Team
The Sustainable Living Team promotes Unity Church’s environmental efforts. They oversee Unity’s transformation into a green institution and lead the congregation in advocacy on climate change issues facing our world. They partner with Minnesota Interfaith Power and Light
Contact: Anna Newton at email@example.com or Nicole Lynskey at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Opportunity St. Paul
As part of a city wide effort, Unity Church is joining other faith communities to rally an army of volunteers to combat poverty. Unity is becoming an anchor house of worship for Opportunity St. Paul, which matches volunteers with nonprofit organizations that have proven records of effectively addressing barriers to economic mobility. Opportunity St. Paul also offers volunteers learning events that build community and advance understanding of how to make a meaningful dent in poverty. As a key part of the effort, Unity hopes to get at least 10 volunteers to participate. What this means is that you will:
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