Unity Transition Timeline
November 2018 – Peggy makes the decision to move to Arizona in the coming year, writes letter to Rev. Carrie Kenyon at Unity Worldwide Ministries (UWM), telling her of upcoming decision to leave Unity Fort Collins and asking if UWM can help facilitate transition process.
(Background: Unity FC has had difficult and conflicted transitions in past, UWM has healthy and helpful resources available. Intention: Peggy loves Unity FC deeply and wants this transition to be a different and more loving experience for everyone!)
Jan 6, 2019 – Peggy informs Council about decision to move and shares information about what is available through UWM. Council agrees that transition help from UWM can be explored. Council & staff also agree that a plan of action needs to be in place before sharing all of this info with the congregation.
Jan 9 – Council (w/o staff) has video conference meeting with Carrie Kenyon to discuss transition options. Carrie sends resources detailing healthy transition processes. Three different possible plans for a UWM consultant being at Unity were presented to the council.
All Council and staff members answer a written Assessment questionnaire, giving Rev Kenyon information with which to match Unity Fort Collins with a consultant.
Jan 20 – Peggy shares her decision to move with the Unity congregation – and Gerald shares an update about the process
Feb 3 – Council & staff has video conference meeting with Steve Colladay, Unity minister and independent transition consultant recommended by Carrie, based on perceived needs and assessment responses. Council agrees through consensus to hire Steve as our transition consultant.
Of the three plans presented to the council for a consultant being at our Unity, the following plan was selected: Steve to be interim minister and consultant for 2 weeks in March, 2 weeks in April and 2 weeks in May. During the weeks in March and April, Peggy will step out of that role in order to allow space for future plans to happen without her. During those weeks, Steve will lead groups; be available for counseling, as well as hearing community concerns and feedback; he will be the Sunday speaker; and he will facilitate 2 day-long Saturday workshops for the purpose of Healing the Past and Visioning the Future. In addition he will help train a search team – members TBD – to do the new Spiritual Leader search, with the final decision on a new leader resting with our congregation.
Financial compensation: Peggy will take no salary for the time she is away. Steve will receive $1900 plus lodging for each full-time 2-week period. This covers regular ministerial duties, as well as his specialized consultant expertise.
Feb 10th—Two new council members were added to the council (Corina Hartzog and Jorgan Augenstein) after Will Moore and Brenda Carey stepped down due to their terms being done.
Feb 20 – Steve arrives for his 1st 2-week ministry. After his arrival and after reading a copy of our current bylaws, he discovers the wording in our bylaws that says we are “not affiliated with Unity Worldwide Ministries.” (While Peggy had explained that our Unity was not officially affiliated with UWM in her initial communication with Carrie, they did not understand that this was actually written formally into our bylaws.)
That is when we were told that in order to get UWM’s assistance with finding a new Spiritual Leader, we would need to be a member of UWM again. And that in order to be a member, we would need to change some stuff in our bylaws.
Mar 1 – 1st Saturday workshop is held (“HOPCOF”), facilitated by Steve
Mar 4 – Council & staff meets with Steve, discussion is held about bylaws and official affiliation with UWM. Bylaws team is formed, Sue Taylor volunteers to recruit representatives from 1st and 2nd services for the bylaws team; HOPCOF follow-up action team is formed and council commits to availability to answer questions EVERY Sunday, as well as weekly transition updates in newsletter & our website.
Mar 18 – Bylaws team has 1st meeting
If we choose to affiliate, can we retain: our definition of congregational membership; inclusive, inter-faith language in our classes, talks and written/posted materials; use of consensus as our decision-making tool.
In addition, what do we want to happen to our property in the event of the dissolution of Unity of Ft Collins, and if we choose not to affiliate with UWM, what shall we call ourselves?
Mar 25 – Steve arrives for his 2nd 2-week ministry
Mar 28 – Healing and reconciliation circle held, facilitated by Steve
March 30 – 2nd Saturday workshop on Vision, Mission, & Core Values is held, facilitated by Steve
Mar 31st – draft of Vision, Mission, Core Values distributed to congregation on paper and in newsletter for their feedback
April 2 – Bylaws team has video conference meeting with leaders at UWM to address the bylaws issues. You can watch the entire (1 hr, 22 minutes) video meeting.
April 7 – Council & Bylaws team meet to create a draft of amended bylaws proposal to submit to UWM
April 14 – Council meeting with several congregants present. Issues discussed were: whether we need an Interim Spiritual Leader and how to find one; Steve’s continued employment (or not) and what that might look like, and do we need to wait until we become a UWM member (or not) to decide if we continue with him or not; possibly hiring a local, secular consultant if we don’t continue with Steve, etc.
Agreement was reached for Gerald to ask Steve what his timeline/agenda looks like for his currently proposed 2-week May stint at our Unity. Agreement was reached that Peggy would research how to find an interim Spiritual Leader. Other folks are encouraged to also research interim Spiritual Leader ideas/people/possibilities/etc.
April 15 – Our proposed amended bylaws were emailed to UWM for UWM’s review. They will let us know (within 10 days) if our proposed bylaw changes meet UWM’s membership requirements.
April 18—Special council meeting. (Everyone is invited to attend council meetings. The next council meeting is May 19th at 12noon.) Decisions made at this meeting:
-Put Steve Colladay’s next visit on hold until we decide to be UWM members or not.
-Franklin, Corina, and Jordan will be responsible for getting guest speakers after Peggy’s last talk on May 5th. They will focus on asking our own Unity congregants to speak as much as possible.
-Our own Rev. Julie Legg will be in charge of ministerial duties (weddings, memorial services, counseling, etc.) until we get a new Spiritual Leader. Call Grace, in the Unity office, for more info: 970-482-1620.
-The Unity council will be responsible for the decisions that used to be made by Peggy until a new Spiritual Leader is in place. Grace will continue to keep the office running smoothly.
April 25—Cynthia Vermillion-Foster, Executive Director of Member Services at Unity Worldwide Ministries (UWM), contacted us April 25, 3019 to let us know that the proposed revisions we sent her on our bylaws have been approved by UWM. The council let her know that we would need to have a special member meeting in order to approve (or not) those same revisions before we can move ahead.
Presently, the council is deciding the best date to have that special meeting. Our bylaws say we must give our members at least 10 days notice of a special meeting, so look for that meeting date in our weekly NL, online, and in our Sunday bulletin soon.
May 5 – Peggy’s last Sunday talk and send-off party
Date TBA – Once UWM comes back and tells us whether our proposed bylaw amendments are acceptable to them or not, a special meeting of our Unity community (need a total of 25 folks to have a quorum) will be announced. At that meeting, everyone gets a voice in deciding if we want to amend our bylaws or not – which will then determine affiliation (or not) with UWM.
Look for more info about: – Search team to be formed to find a new Spiritual Leader. This process will be outlined further as we get more info.
Unity of Fort Collins Bylaws Info
Watch the video conference meeting between our Unity of Fort Collins bylaw committee and Unity Worldwide Ministries (UWM). You also may also be interested in the Video link of the March 21, 2019 UWM By-Laws call with Unity Leaders nationwide.