New York State Convention of Universalists (NYSCU)
Albany, New York
President’s Report 10/21/2017
Welcome to the 191st Annual Meeting of the New York State Convention of
Universalists. For this meeting we have partnered with the Hudson Mohawk
UU Cluster. Please join me in thanking the Albany congregation (FUUSA)
and other Cluster members for their gracious hospitality. I hope that
you find your time here rewarding and productive. Please share — with
me, and other board members — thoughts on how we might enhance these
meetings in the future. But don’t bother suggesting a Hawaiian retreat.
I’ve tried; the budget won’t handle it.
I am delighted to announce that NYSCU’s 192nd Annual Meeting will
be held in Syracuse at First Unitarian Universalist Society of Syracuse,
on October 19–20, 2018. We are in discussion with potential
You can find details on this past year’s activities in the other
reports in this delegate packet; the reports of the secretary,
treasurer, the service gratuity chair, and the grants/loans chair will
give you an excellent sense of what NYSCU has been doing.
Organized in 1825, the New York State Convention of Universalists
continues to: support Universalist history and values, provide financial
support to CER (formerly Metro and St. Lawrence Districts) programs, and
administer our Grant and Loan Program which has benefited both
congregations and individuals within New York State and beyond. Since
2004, NYSCU has awarded grants of more than $500,000 and offered
no-interest loans (to congregations) totaling more than $400,000. And
we’re very pleased to say that during this time period, all loans have
been repaid on schedule (or earlier).
We also offer retirement assistance to ministers (and surviving spouses)
who served in New York State Universalist churches for a specified
period of time prior to 1961. Please join me in thanking the board and
committee members who help get these projects funded and distributed.
If you have a vision for the growth of Unitarian Universalism or the
affirmation of Universalist history, I hope your congregation will apply
for a grant this year. If you have a bricks-and-mortar project, you
could consider applying for a loan. We also have a category called
scholarships to leadership schools. The deadline for applications is
January 31, 2018. Forms and information are available on our website
While you’re at the website, take a longer look. The site includes other
resources, including names and contact information for board and
committee members; links to member congregations and denominational
contacts; annual reports for the past 10 years; a 10-year history of
grants and loans, with links to some project websites; a guide to books
that the Convention has helped to publish; and the history of the
Convention, written by our archivist Karen Dau. From the book guide
page, you can download
Heritage, a compendium of keynote addresses from 1976 to 1992,
and Remember Universalism
Into Life, the Leaders’ guide for an 8-week adult
discussion series based on those addresses.
We offer our continual thanks to Michael Scott, our
webmaster. He maintains and invigorates our institutional memory.
I am very pleased that Margaret Maguire Davis will continue on the board
in the role of Vice President (she is an excellent co-anchor), and Mark
Bunce, Ronald Clupper, Ryan Novosielski, and Eve Stevens will continue
as board members. A fond farewell and thanks to Ruth Stewart, who is
leaving the board. I’d like to thank Lynn Beken, our treasurer as she
settles into a diverse position, and many thanks to Margaret Hart, who
is leaving the nominating committee after years of invaluable
service. Kudos to Fred Boreali, nominating committee chair, and other
committee members for presenting this year’s slate of nominees. Again
I’d like to commend Karen Dau, our tireless archivist. Please welcome
her as she travels into your section of the state on her
explorations. And a sad farewell to Tom Hackett, our invaluable
secretary (and fellow Yankee fan), though he’s not really leaving (as he
reminds me); he will continue to function in the fairly new position of
It is a pleasure to serve with such a multitalented, enthusiastic,
caring group of people. If a member of the nominating committee calls
you next year, or maybe next month, about serving on the NYSCU board, I
hope you’ll give the idea serious consideration.
Judi Adel, President
December 12, 2018.
Please direct any comments, questions, or corrections