Photo of Emily Harris

April Volunteer of the Month – Emily Harris

Emily Harris was a regular church goer as a child but became disillusioned with religion as an adult, and after a family tragedy rejected theism.  There were still good memories of what a church could be – supportive, loving, nurturing- but dogma and prejudice got in the way.  Seeing how church communities supported their family members, Linda and Emily discussed how important a church community could be.  Emily had briefly attended a UU church in Portland Oregon and thought UUism was possible.  Vowing to visit all the local UU churches in 2013, they never got beyond UUCSS.  They were greeted warmly by Dorothy Hale, the rock band was playing and they never looked back.  UUCSS was a community that was loving, shared her values and allowed her to be herself.

Emily’s first church job was a natural fit – doing Sunday support with Dorothy Hale. Since then she has done a variety of things – worked on the membership committee, helped with the auction and joined the Rainbow Alliance.  Her interest in music has flowered into membership with the UUukes and the A Cappella Group both of which support worship services.  One of the most meaningful things she’s done has been as a teacher of the fourth and fifth grades with Patti Poss.  She likes kids and nurturing young people fills an important need. Emily became co-collector in 2019, which fits well with her love of data and spreadsheets.

When asked why she volunteers Emily said, “We have a wonderful community.  It takes everyone, according to our abilities, to nurture it. We’ve had a few tumultuous years and now it’s up to us to make a way forward.”