67th annual Pacific Unitarian pledge drive 2024-2025. Illustration of people building with blocks

Building a New Way

Building a New Way

Here at Pacific Unitarian Universalist, we are building and rebuilding. We have picked up the pieces and gained strength after several years of changes and challenges. Now, we are laying a solid foundation for our new minister to come and join us in our journey to become even bigger, better, and brighter.

This is our 67th opportunity to raise much-needed funds for Pacific Unitarian. We now ask you to contribute even more to help us create the future we dream about–a future we deserve.

Where We’ve Been

Since Pacific Unitarian’s inception in the late 1950s, we have been a solid liberal religious presence in the South Bay. Pacific Unitarian Universalist Church has been a steady, constant home for progress and change through the Vietnam War, Civil Rights Protests, the Marriage Equality Movement, the Women’s March, Black Lives Matter, the Global Pandemic, and more. When the pandemic struck, Pacific Unitarian adapted quickly, installing new technology and engaging staff and volunteers to keep us connected through streaming, Zooming, and small group ministry. As we emerged from the pandemic, we re-established committees, reinstated our beloved Sunday lunches, and rebuilt missed programs and ministries. We deepened our commitment to our wonderful music program and director. We invested in new technology and approaches to connecting with neighbors and the community, hiring an audio-visual specialist and a web developer. We have re-established our Stewardship, Social Justice, and Pastoral Care Committees and our fantastic food ministry. As we strengthened our service to each other, we expanded that love and service to our community through our weekly Community’s Child lunch-making and monthly Split Plate collections. We have joined new friends with amazing causes, eager to help lead our social justice team to make impactful changes.

Where We Are

In the past year, we have worked with our Interim Minister, Rev. Chloë Briedé, to continue building responsibly and mindfully. While neighboring congregations have opted to eliminate Religious Education Staff, we reinvested in our children and hired part-time Religious Education Coordinator Cara Craig. To manage our finances and make the treasurer’s job better aligned with the bylaws, we retained an accounting firm to overhaul our accounting software system. We maintained and repaired our lovely grounds as we faced new repairs, higher utilities, and taxes. We face the retirement of our incredible Events Coordinator, Lynn Taylor, poised to continue forward with a trusted catering partner. We do our best to compensate our treasured staff fairly. We have celebrated with dancing, service auction events, our Luminescence celebration, Black and White Concert, and more. We have welcomed new children and youth into our newly established Religious Education program and have restarted the OWL sexuality education program.

Amid all these wonderful happenings, we have felt the aging of our beautiful campus; our plumbing needs to be fixed, our AV system needs upgrading, and we face issues with drainage and erosion by our parking lot. While these will be significant costs, the board has remained thoughtful and flexible to fulfill these needs.

Inflation and insurance costs have gone up by about 4%. While we now must meet these higher costs for our church, we also must consider the impact on our beloved employees. We would like to live out our values as an employer and a place of worship by offering pay raises to meet the higher cost of living.

Why Pledge?

Annual pledges are the lifeblood of our church. This year our pledge goal is $300,000, based on 60% of the estimated budget for the next year.

Here are a few things your pledge supports:

  • Our phenomenal music program, music director, and special performers
  • Religious Education programming, including OWL and Coming of Age
  • Multicultural programming
  • Maintaining the beauty and safety of our campus, making necessary repairs and improvements
  • Technology staff and expenses that allow us to stream services
  • Revitalizing our website in preparation for the ministerial search
  • Salaries for our staff, including our bookkeeper, AV specialist, administrator, custodian, and childcare workers, including some pay raises
  • Taxes and utilities, which have increased with inflation
  • Membership dues to our incredibly supportive parent organization, the Unitarian Universalist Association
  • Community outreach with social justice programs like Community’s Child
  • Hiring and welcoming our new Settled Minister
  • Funding a kitchen assistant for the food ministry

How much should you pledge?

Well, that is the age-old question. It’s different for everyone. We would meet our goal if those who pledged last year increased their pledges by 23%. Given our reduced revenue and increased expenses, you might consider increasing your pledge by 23% or more this year. The pledging guide below from the UUA might help. It may also help to know that to fund 60% of Pacific Unitarian’s budget, we need $2,200 per year per pledger. If you can’t give that much, please give what you can. If you can pledge more, that helps all of us. We just ask each person to give what makes sense for them—and as much as possible, think about what Pacific Unitarian means to you. Thank you all for all of your support!

Percentage of Income


We are continually grateful for all your support of Pacific Unitarian over the last 67 years. Thank you! If you have any questions about this year’s pledge drive, please contact the stewardship team. We will have a table on the patio every Sunday from March 17 to April 14. You can also contact a member of the team, Melissa Tyrrell (meltyrrell5@gmail.com), Maureen Swenson (maureenmswenson@gmail.com), Eric Hayes (eric.allen.hayes@gmail.com) or Minister Chloë (minister@pacificunitarian.org).

Helpful Pledge Facts:

  • Your pledge should be submitted by Sunday, April 14, to impact the 2024-25 budget creation, which includes staffing decisions.
  • Your pledge today does not go into effect until the start of the new church year, July 1, 2024. Pledge payment for the year does not need to be completed until June 2025.
  • Whether you pledge or not, your membership status is unaffected. Still, only members with a pledge of record can vote on church business, like approving the budget, amending church bylaws, and voting to call the new minister. If you cannot make a pledge this year and want to maintain your voting status, please talk to Rev. Chloë for a waiver.