First Unitarian Society in Newton

New to FUSN / Membership

Membership Enriches the FUSN Experience

Newcomers and longtime visitors who feel they have found a home at FUSN are welcome to become members. Everyone is invited to join the society! Membership is a rich experience with both the privileges and responsibilities of belonging deeply to a community.

By definition, FUSN members are congregants who have been voted into membership by the board of trustees of the society and who have signed the society's membership book. However, membership means much more.  First of all, joining FUSN is a declaration that you share the values and goals of the society and the wider Unitarian Universalist movement. It is also a personal commitment to be in relationship with the members of this society who, collectively, seek spiritual growth for themselves and their children, share the wisdom of many religious traditions, and offer service to humanity and acknowledge a reverence for the earth. 

Expectations of Members

FUSN has broad expectations of members, but how these expectations are met will vary from person to person and over time. Mostly, members make a commitment to reflect periodically on these expectations and on their own involvement with the congregation. The expectations:

  • Attend Sunday services with the congregation;
  • Actively pursue your own spiritual growth;
  • Join in the work and play of the congregation;
  • Pledge at a level commensurate with your commitment;
  • Provide service to the wider community; and
  • Connect with the wider UU movement.

Please consider taking the Everything UU course taught by the ministers and director of religious education to learn more.

Benefits of Membership

Having a place to worship, make friends, pay attention to spiritual matters, receive support, seek out pastoral care--these are all benefits available to everyone in the FUSN community. However, many people report feeling a deeper sense of connection to the society and fellow members once they have officially joined. There is a sense of belonging and stability that often accompanies formalizing the relationship. Other benefits are more concrete: free access to facilities and minister for weddings and funerals, reduced building rental for special occasions, and a subscription to the quarterly UUA magazine The World. Together, members jointly own the building and the endowment. That's something!

Committee Chairs Meeting

In addition, only members can confer ordination on the  ministerial interns and vote to call or install a new minister. These are joyous occasions in the life of the congregation, and only members can fully participate. Finally, being a member allows you to fully live the fifth principle of our faith: the right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large. Only members can vote at official congregational meetings, hold an elected office of the congregation, and represent the society at district or national meetings.

Steps to Membership

If you would like to join the society, drop by the Welcome Table at Coffee Hour and ask the Member Services Committee member for an Intent to Join card. This card will be presented on your behalf to the board of trustees. Following FUSN's 150-year tradition, the board votes new members into the congregation at the first meeting following the signing of the card.

After the vote, you are asked to submit a brief paragraph about yourself to be published in the newsletter to notify the congregation of your commitment to them and to the society. A few weeks later, you will be invited to participate in the breakfast and new-member welcoming ceremony that celebrates your official entry to the FUSN community. At that time, you will sign FUSN's historic Membership Book, and, together with others joining on the same day, make a statement of your commitment to the community, and hear the promise the community will make to you.

For more information, contact the membership services committee chair.


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