Pathway to Membership

I’m Currently a Friend. Why Should I Become a Member?

If you’ve been attending BUF for several weeks or months and feel that you’ve found a spiritual home and a likeminded community, then we hope you’ll consider membership. Every committed member makes BUF a stronger, more effective force for peace and justice. Members enjoy many practical benefits, including voting rights, eligibility for leadership roles, a denominational magazine subscription, and reduced rental fees, to name a few. More importantly, full members experience the transformative power of commitment by living in covenant and honoring right relationship with other members. (Also, see “What to Expect…” below.)

How Do I Become a Member?

If you've found your spiritual base or long-term community at BUF, it’s time to attend our three-part "Pathway to Membership" series. Dates are announced on the Sundays preceding Part 1, and in our weekly email newsletter, the “Midweek Update” (to subscribe, enter your email address on the Home page link).

The Pathway series, usually offered three times each year, provides an overview of UU history and theology; explains BUF's structure, culture, and programming; and clarifies member benefits and responsibilities. The classes also help you consider your spiritual orientation and establish meaningful connections in the congregation. Finally, they prepare you to sign our membership book and to pledge financially in proportion to your resources. 

Sign up for Pathway to Membership Classes

If you've think you've found your spiritual home or community at BUF, please attend our three-part "Pathway to Membership" series. Our minister Rev. Paul Beckel will provide an overview of UU history and theology; we'll also explain BUF's structure, culture, and programming, and clarify member benefits and responsibilities. The classes will help you to consider your spiritual orientation, to make meaningful connections at BUF, and to weigh your readiness to commit to our faith community.  Childcare available on request with sufficient notice.   To register, contact Rev. Paul Beckel, or 360 733-3837.

What BUF Will Ask of You as a Member

  • Attend regularly. Small miracles happen each Sunday. Your presence is a meaningful addition to the community’s energy and power. A word, the silence, music or a song may be healing, encouraging, or transformative for you. Or you can be the one to reach out to welcome someone new, offer an affirming look or say a transforming word. A small miracle may happen through you.  See more under WORSHIP.
  • Consider committing to a spiritual practice. BUF will offer you ideas for developing a practice right for you – praying; meditating; chanting; reading poetry or other inspirational words; walking; journal-keeping. . . Care for your own spirituality, so that you may then help others.  See more under LEARN.
  • Participate in activities. Join one of our groups, classes, or circles. We offer many ways to feed your mind and spirit. You’ll find friends and fun this way. See more under CONNECT.
  • Serve the fellowship as you’re able. We are grateful for and encourage your gifts. We will support you as you search for your ministry here: as a greeter, a Sunday celebrant, a religious education teacher, a cleaning team member, a cook for a Community Night Dinner, sing in the choir – whatever calls to you. This is where you’ll make deeper connections.  See more under SERVE - Serve the Congregation.
  • Serve the larger community. We want the fellowship to give in good measure to alleviate suffering in the world. We help each other respond to the needs of the world with compassion and action. BUF supports various community organizations as well as hosts its own in-house Ministry, Humanitas. These opportunities are well publicized.  See more under SERVE - Serve The Community.
  • Give as generously as you can to support the fellowship’s work. Members share in good measure in order to live in good conscience and sleep well at night. May we know meaning and joy in giving. We give to each other, all together, to keep our faith community strong.  See more under GIVE.

What You as a Member May Expect of BUF

  • As an inclusive community, we will affirm you as a unique individual. We will help you find your own spiritual path through our services, music, and adult religious education. We will encourage you to serve both our congregation and our community, while respecting the limits placed on you by family, work, or health. 
  • Membership at BUF can change your life in myriad ways. Some of us make amazing new friends; others overcome shyness. Still others learn new skills, take risks, or cultivate avocations beyond their work lives. We will celebrate your joys with you and do our best to support you in times of stress and sadness.
  • Many of us find that the Unitarian Universalist search for individual truth and meaning helps us unpack old religious baggage and discover exciting new possibilities for growth and change.
  • At BUF, members get back at least as much as they give. There’s always more at BUF: more love, more hope, more learning, more growth, more joy, more fun. Dare to try us; new members often exclaim that they were UUs all their lives; they just didn’t know it!
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Header handshake photo by Dan Witter; photo of Wendy Czopp signing our historic membership book by Liz Weber.