On Sunday, March 10th, UUCJ will hold conversation circles instead of our regular Sunday service. The purpose is to bring members together to discuss our feelings and concerns about the upheaval in our beloved community.

Many of us are grieving the loss of Phillip and Tyler. We are experiencing a spectrum of emotions arising from conflict, loss, and change. The facilitated talks will give everyone the opportunity to speak their truth in a positive and non-judgmental environment.

By listening intently, we support each other and gain knowledge to help one another heal. A facilitator and a Covenant keeper will gently ensure the adherence to the rules of the circle.

It is not a debate, a means of condemnation, or a solution to fixing our deep-seated issues. It is the first step. It is a necessary step.

In airing our emotions, sharing our truths, and bonding as a community, the path towards healing our church can be found.

Rules of the Conversation Circle

We will:

  • stay in the circle until the talking in over
  • speak for ourselves
  • refrain from name calling and blaming
  • listen deeply
  • speak one at a time
  • not interrupt
  • speak into the circle and do not talk to those outside of the circle
  • everyone agrees to the rules

No one has to speak but everyone will be given the opportunity.  Anyone may pass and then will get another opportunity.

Everyone who is not in the circle listens and does not speak.

Facilitators will:

  • make sure everyone is given a chance to speak – there is no need to go around the circle but rather as people wish to speak
  • not let one person dominate the time
  • go back to a person who passes and ask them if they wish to speak

The Covenant Keeper will:

  • stop people who break the rules – gently
  • take a full minute of silence if the rules are broken
  • name the take aways – big patterns, values or behaviors (examples – broken trust, not being heard, fearful)

A new circle forms once the first circle has finished.

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