UCCDM Annual Meeting 2017

The UCCDM Board of Directors Annual Meeting will be held October 1-October 3, 2017 at Church House/ Gateway Raddison in Cleveland, OH.

It is not yet known if video conferencing will be available.

Non Board Members may attend at their own expense. The call to the meeting is below and any Board members or guests wishing to participate must register below to do so.

UCC Disabilities Ministries Seeks Nominations for Board of Directors

The UCC Disabilities Ministries Board’s Nominations Committee is seeking people who are passionate about disability ministry who would like to serve on our Board. Our Board is made up of people with disabilities, professionals who work in the disability field, and family members of people with disabilities. Our mission is to encourage our denomination to create worship and meeting places, programs and leadership that are accessible to all (A2A) and welcoming and inclusive of all persons with disabilities.  

Some of our short term goals include increasing the number of A2A congregations in the UCC; providing guidance to associations, conferences, camps, and other settings of the UCC about how they can live out the commitment to be Accessible to All; encouraging the formation of Conference Inclusion Teams; increasing disability awareness; and major fundraising to support the future of the ministry.

Someone interested in serving with UCCDM should be someone who is a member of a UCC congregation; regularly reads, responds to, and is comfortable with using email; and someone who can devote a minimum of ten (10) hours a month to this work, which includes a monthly conference call meeting of about 90 minutes to two hours. Being a Board Director includes a willingness to make a financial commitment to our disability ministry each year and serve on at least one Board subcommittee. At this time we are looking to fill two terms that will run October 2017-September 2023.

We encourage interested candidates to visit our website at http://www.uccdm.org to learn more about us. The UCCDM Board of Directors is currently most in need of members who are authorized ministers or have completed theological education, as well as men and persons of color and ethnic background,the nominating committee strongly encourages these persons to apply. The nominating form must be filled out online at UCCDM Nominations 2017. Nominations must be received by July 11, 2017.

Yours in Ministry,

Rev. Kelli Parrish Lucas, Chair UCC Disabilities Ministries Board

Call for Nominations for UCCDM Awards 2017

The United Church of Christ Disabilities Ministries has a tradition of making awards at the UCC Synod. The UCCDM Awards recognize the contributions of congregations, other church settings, and individuals who have contributed to the inclusion of people with disabilities in all aspects of the life of the church.

Nominations are now open for the UCCDM Awards which will be announced at the Health and Wholeness Luncheon at Synod 2017. Individuals, churches, and other settings of the church may nominate others or themselves. Awards may be given in the following categories:

  • churches & organizations that have demonstrated leadership in accessibility,
  • individuals who have shown exceptional leadership in disabilities ministries, and
  • the Virginia Kreyer Award, a lifetime achievement award given to an individual who has made significant contribution to disabilities ministries in the larger church. The Virginia Kreyer Award has only been given twice and is reserved as a high award given only on occasion.

Nominations can be submitted on-line at UCCDM Synod Award Nominations 2017  The Deadline for nominations is June 9, 2017.

UCCDM Updates Publication to Help Congregations, Associations, and Conferences Become Accessible to All (A2A)

The UCC Disabilities Ministries (UCCDM) has recently released an updated publication entitled “Any Body, Every Body, Christ’s Body: A Guide for Congregations, Associations, and Conferences for Becoming Accessible to All.” The subtitle is a response to the growing need for all settings of the UCC to become “Accessible to All” (A2A) persons with disabilities. The call for the UCC to become accessible in all aspects of church life including worship, fellowship, and leadership was made clear when the Twenty-Fifth General Synod adopted the resolution “Called to Wholeness in Christ: Becoming a Church Accessible to All” in 2005.

The updated “Any Body, Every Body, Christ’s Body” contains four concise sections. The first section introduces various forms, but not all forms, of disability and accessibility. The second section addresses how leadership can be accessible to all. Third section addresses attitudes that often discourages people with disabilities and their families from church participation. The fourth section addresses ways to create accessible communication for the church community. These sections will help UCC settings address specific needs called for by the Synod “Called to Wholeness in Christ”. These sections will help UCC settings learn how to establish an inclusion task force, how to explore your building and programs for accessibility, how to invite persons with disability to church and into leadership positions and how to seek out resources and mentors in the disability committee so that the civil rights “nothing about us without us” commitment to persons with disabilities is maintained.

This new publication provides information and resources that will guide congregations as they answer the call to become Accessible to All. The resource is available for free at uccdm.org. The UCCDM Board of Directors looks forward to being a resource to other setting of the church. How-to support for becoming A2A is available. Questions can be directed to chair@uccdm.org or secretary@uccdm.org.

UCC Disabilities Ministries Seeks Nominations for Board of Directors

The UCC Disabilities Ministries Board’s Nominations Committee is seeking people who are passionate about disability ministry who would like to serve on our Board.  Our Board is made up of people with disabilities, professionals who work in the disability field, and family members of people with disabilities.  Our mission is to encourage our denomination to create worship and meeting places, programs and leadership that are accessible to all (A2A) and welcoming and inclusive of all persons with disabilities.  

Some of our short term goals include increasing the number of A2A congregations in the UCC; providing guidance to associations, conferences, camps, and other settings of the UCC about how they can live out the commitment to be Accessible to All; working to have a UCCDM presence at Synod 2017; and major fundraising to support the future of the ministry.

Someone interested in serving with us should be someone who is a member of a UCC congregation; regularly reads, responds to, and is comfortable with using email; can devote a minimum of ten (10) hours a month to this work, which includes a monthly conference call meeting of about 90 minutes to two hours. Being a Board Director includes a willingness to make a financial commitment to our disability ministry each year and serve on at least one Board subcommittee. At this time we are looking to fill two terms that will end in September 2017. According to UCCDM by-laws persons who fill these seats at this time would be eligible to be re-elected for the 2017-2023 term on the UCCDM Board of Directors. Two other seats for the 2017-2023 term will also need to be filled and persons applying at this time will also be considered for those seats.

We encourage interested candidates to visit our website at http://www.uccdm.org to learn more about us. The nominating form must be filled out online at  UCCDM Board Director Nominations 2016. Nominations must be received by December 9th, 2016.

Yours in Ministry,

Rev. Kelli Parrish Lucas

Chair, UCC Disabilities Ministries Board of Directors

Annual Meeting of the UCCDM Board of Directors

The United Church of Christ Disabilities Ministries Board of Director’s Annual Meeting will be held on Thursday September 29 and Friday September 30, 2016. The meeting will take place at the Hilton Garden Inn in Addison, Illinois. Some Board members will arrive early to attend the Pathways to Promise Conference on September 28th.

UCCDM By-laws allow for persons interested in the work of the UCCDM to attend the Annual Board meeting at their own expense. This meeting will not be webcast, limited conference call access may be available. Anyone interested in attending this meeting should complete the Call to the UCCDM Annual meeting 2016 form. Anyone needing accommodations to attend this meeting should contact the UCCDM Chair, Rev. Kelli Parrish Lucas at chair@uccdm.org no later than September 15th.

Is Your Congregation Ready to Explore Accessible to All (A2A)?

Featured

The UCCDM encourages all setting of the United Church of Christ to be Accessible to All (A2A)!

New tools are NOW ready to help local congregations determine how accessible their programs and buildings are. (Accessibility is more than a ramp!) This tool is called the Church Building And Program Accessibility Audit. This church accessibility audit can be completed online (Church Building and Program Audit ONLINE). It is also available to be printed as a PDF (UCCDM Church Building and Program Audit 12 pt PDF), LARGE PRINT PDF (UCCDM Church Building and Program Audit 16 pt PDF), Word Document (UCCDM Church Building and Program Audit 12 pt WORD), and LARGE PRINT Word Document (UCCDM Church Building and Program Audit 16 pt WORD).

Once a congregation completes a building and program audit and has identified how to become more (or continue being) inclusive of people with disabilities or/and mental health concerns, the congregation may be ready to become Accessible to All (A2A). To become A2A a congregation completes an A2A Checklist. The checklist was revised in 2016 is available to be completed online (UCCDM A2A Checklist ONLINE)or printed as a PDF (UCCDM A2A Checklist PDF) or in LARGE PRINT (UCCDM A2A Checklist LARGE PRINT PDF).

Congregations that complete the A2A Checklist are added to the A2A Listing!