All Souls has several active covenant groups in our congregation. We created this page as a way of introduction.

What is a covenant group?

Also known as “Small Group Ministries” or “Chalice Circles,” Covenant Groups are a vital part of many Unitarian Universalist (UU) congregations. Groups of 10-12 people who meet regularly, usually monthly, to reflect on and discuss significant life topics.

These small groups are great places to get to know other people and to get to know yourself. Over time, participants build deep connections with one another, with the congregation and with our faith.

Whether the topic is “good and evil,” “mindful living” or “letting go,” the conversation is respectful and caring and leads to greater understanding. In each session, facilitated by a member of the congregation, all participants have opportunity to share their perspectives, tell their stories, and listen deeply. The time together is structured: Groups generally begin with centering readings and often include a time of reflection and sharing. Our covenant groups also put their faith into action through service projects.

 

What are the requirements for membership in a covenant group?

  • Show up for meetings
  • Commit to participate for one year
  • Host (or arrange a location for) a meeting in rotation with the rest of the group
  • Remain connected and engaged with All Souls
  • Service to the church (particularly as super-volunteers on Sunday mornings on a rotating basis with the other covenant groups)
  • Service to the broader community (i.e. social justice activity)

 

If you are interested in finding out more about our covenant groups please:

Visit our Welcome Table in the church lobby on Sunday mornings. We try to limit the group size of each group to 15 or fewer members, with 10-12 being the typical size. Please don’t feel that if you visit a group you are obligated to join; we accept your “free and responsible search for truth and meaning”.

Below please find brief snapshot bios of each group.

Name: B2s    (B2)
Year established: 2003
Current # of people in group: 10
Open to new members: Yes 1 or 2 more
Meeting info: once a month on a Tuesday, usually the 3rd Tuesday
Meeting location: rotates among members’ homes
Food: Pizza, with salad and dessert by host
Conversation type:

 

Check-in by members; discuss an agreed-upon topic.  The topic may be from a list generated in earlier meetings, a discussion of a sermon, a book that we’ve chosen or a taped movie that we watch separately or together.
Other Community Activities:

 

We volunteer packing lunches at Kids’ Food Basket once a month on a Wednesday evening.  We have done this for 10+ years.
What is important to this group:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s an abridged version of our Covenant: We pledge to walk together to foster spiritual growth, to serve All Souls Community Church and the greater community.  We pledge to walk together even though the path may be difficult to follow. We pledge to speak honestly and to listen without criticism. We pledge to treat other B2s with courtesy, respect, kindness and compassion and we will do this even when we strongly disagree or are feeling grouchy. We will strive to stay on topic even though this seems an impossible task. We will break bread together as a time honored way to build community.

 

Name: Driftwood8        (DW)
Year established: 2010
Current # of people in group: 10
Open to new members: yes
Meeting info: Third Saturday 6-9pm
Meeting location: Members’ homes
Food: Pot-luck w/host providing main dish
Conversation type: Social justice, mental health, and spiritual growth
Other Community Activities: Volunteer @ Feeding America
What is important to this group:

 

Building community

 

Name: DBs       (DB)
Year established: 2003
Current # of people in group: 9
Open to new members: Yes, absolutely
Meeting info: Irregular, we schedule the next meeting at each meeting (and via email)
Meeting location: Usually in a group member’s home, sometimes at a restaurant or theater
Food: Often a full meal, but we have several dietary restrictions that make this more difficult than it once was.
Conversation type:

 

 

Wide-ranging, but fairly “intellectual” in nature. We’ve read and discussed a variety of books, told one another about our favorite poems & music, watched one another’s children grow up, watched movies together, etc.
Other Community Activities: Festival of the Arts every summer, RE participation, leading services in the summer
What is important to this group:

 

A safe place to state our beliefs (or think through our beliefs) with no harsh judgements. Companionship with like-minded (liberal/progressive) thinkers. Liking food is also important.
Name: The Hopping Clementines     (HC)
Year established: 2015
Current # of people in group: 10
Open to new members:

 

Yes, we are open to new members, and visitors. We would like to limit ourselves to 12 members due to meeting space size
Meeting info: Usually meet the First Friday of the month @630. We adjust for holidays or other commitments.
Meeting location: Rotates to all member’s homes (if possible)
Food:

 

 

 

Food is dictated by the host. They typically decide a main dish, and all others bring sides (examples, soups were made, salads, and breads were brought.) We have also had tacos, grilled meats, pasta. We do have some vegetarian members, some dietary constraints, but we accommodate well.
Conversation type: More of a book club. We are reading Good Citizens
Other Community Activities: We are involved with ICCF, thru Cathy in our group. We have made meals for their meetings. We also volunteer as a group for a shift at the festival booth.
What is important to this group:

 

 

We are definitely not too serious!! A socializing book club with a social justice bent. (Well behaved and cute) Kids welcome! This group is there to listen to what each other has to say and cares about how each other is doing… it’s nice to have a group like that.

 

Name: Semi-Tones     (ST)
Year established: 2015
Current # of people in group: 8
Open to new members: Yes
Meeting info: Second or third Sunday afternoon
Meeting location: Rotates between members houses
Food: Yes! Everybody brings something, host provides main dish.
Conversation type: It varies, we pick a book or reading to discuss as well as a check in.
Other Community Activities: None at this time
What is important to this group:

 

We are a supportive group focused on spiritual growth.

 

Name: X-Factor      (XF)
Year established: 2009
Current # of people in group: 11
Open to new members: No, not at this time
Meeting info: Fourth Sunday of the month after church (1-3pm)
Meeting location: Usually Mary Blackwell’s home with  some rotation
Food: Every gathering pot-luck (full meal)
Conversation type:

 

Topic varies but is known in advance.  We designate someone to be “facilitator” for the next meeting who selects the topic and runs the meeting.
Other Community Activities:  
What is important to this group:

 

 

Meeting attendance, alternate topic leadership and presentation, love one another,  when leading be prepared, volunteer at church, open discussion, honor each other’s opinion, be supportive

 

Name: Choir & Music  (CM)
Year established: 2001
Current # of people in group: 25
Open to new members: Yes – always!
Meeting info: Every Thursday evening 7-9pm and Sunday’s at 11am
Meeting location: All Souls
Food: Holiday party in December and annual end of year dinner out
Conversation type: Singing!
Other Community Activities Set up Home Coming Picnic and End of Year Picnic –
What is important to this group: We see being part of our choir as being in a covenant group as well. To have fun and to make great music together!