Our Mission, Vision, & Ends is the core of our organization. All of our ministries, programs, and committees serve that core to help bring it to life within, among, and beyond our walls. We are organized around 7 major areas: Justice Making, Our Home, Governance, Generosity & Giving, Nurture & Communication, Spiritual Growth & Transformation, and Inspiration. This interconnected, circular “bubble” model represents the empowerment, opportunities for collaboration while centering on our mission:

We are a caring community promoting and providing robust religious and intellectual exploration opportunities for children, youth, and adults. We offer creative and inspirational opportunities for worship. We nurture spiritual and personal growth and transformation, foster diversity by reaching out to different communities, and practice justice as individuals and as a community.

Below the bubble map is a descriptions of each area, with contact information.

Justice Making

Plate Partner

Each month 25% of our unpledged Sunday plate offerings are donated to a local social justice nonprofit we call our Plate Partner. The congregation nominates and then votes on Plate Partners for the upcoming year as a way to live our values.

Contact:  Jim Bigelow

Partner Church

We partner with a Unitarian Congregation in Mészkő, Transylvania, Romania, to be in touch with the roots of our traditions and to work towards our 6th principle, “the goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all.”

Contact: Gywn Reid

Social Justice Council

Social justice work is a natural outgrowth of a healthy, nurturing church community as we seek to act out our Seven UU Principles in the world. We believe that social justice work should be reciprocal, and based on honored and dignified relationships in order that the good work be enduring, sustainable, and transformative for all involved.

Contact: Jim Bigelow

Refugee & Immigrant Ministry

A team who responds to refugee issues in the Treasure Valley and Idaho as a whole, they have been involved in promoting better legislation and have worked with local refugee and immigrant rights groups.

Contact: Betty Van Gheluwe

Pride Ministry

This group reaches out to LGBTQ+ folks to give acceptance and love, and reaches out into the community to create awareness of LGBTQ+ rights and issues and hold public space for their voices to be heard. We also strive to be in right relation with LGBTQ+ folks in our congregation, giving space and compassion for their unique experiences.

Contact: Nancy Harms

Our Home

Outdoor Sanctuary

Our outdoor sanctuary sits on roughly four and half acres of interwoven landscaping and natural habitat. It includes features such as our Bridge to Transylvania, Path of All Times, Jeremiah’s Adventure Garden, and labyrinth with other small wondrous stops along the way. Our outdoor sanctuary is maintained by independent contractors and many volunteers.

Contact: John O’Connor

Building Maintenance

It takes good tools and good hands to keep up our building. We have a part time handyman and a few volunteers who keep us up to code and looking good.

Contact: Jim Ruckh


It takes a special eye to decorate a fellowship. Interiors keeps us looking spiffy with decor of spiritual interest.

Contact: Elaine Daly


We house over 60 shelves of media including books, magazines, and dvds on subjects both spiritual and justice oriented. The library runs on book donations and a volunteer staff.

Contact:  Don Stepich


In a world of revolving safety concerns the Safety Committee keeps us up to date. We have plans in place for health emergencies, fire, flooding, suspicious behavior, and active shooters.

Contact:  Allie Gooding


Committee on Ministry

Board of Directors

The Board of Directors is the primary decision-making body for BUUF and represents the congregation. The Board is responsible for ensuring BUUF is operating in line with its Mission, Vision, and Ends Statements through establishing policies, making choices about goals and strategies and deciding who will be responsible for implementing them. The Board is ultimately responsible for seeing that the congregation’s money, property and people are kept safe, and that the congregation lives in harmony with its own values.

Contact:  Debbie Johnson

Task Forces

Contact:  Debbie Johnson

Minister and Staff

Our Minister and Staff are here to provide support to the congregation through coordinating events, creating and providing communications, and promoting well-being. We are the oil of the fellowships machinery, we make sure things get done smoothly.


Rev. Sara LaWall: Minister

Timothy Ellis, Intern Minister

Emily Emerson Paige: Director of Family Ministries

Rachel Strong: Director of Administration

Carrie Bastian: Music Director

Nancy Harms: Program Support Specialist

Position Unfilled: Childcare Coordinator

Greg Duffy:  Building & Grounds Coordinator

Mike Lemieux: A/V Technology Coordinator

Generosity and Giving

Annual Giving Drive

This fellowship belongs to each of us and it is supported almost entirely through the annual pledges of its members and friends. The Annual Giving Drive is our opportunity to give life to our vision and strategic plan, and align ourselves with our values through giving.

Contact: Miriam Woito


We fundraise for ourselves through events such as the yearly silent auction. Fundraising fills the gaps and ensures abundance for this fellowship.

Contact: Information

Legacy Giving

The planning of a gift is part of the joy, to know that whatever abundance the world has given you will be passed on in ways that you most value after you’re gone. Such gifts perpetuate a future for our families, community, and faith. If Boise UU has been a transforming force in your life, you can be a part of its legacy for future generations.

Contact: Judy Holcombe

Nurture and Communication


As a radically inclusive fellowship, we do our best to make everyone welcome. We are intersectional in our faiths, races, abilities, and orientations, and there is so much love as we strive to be in right relation with all people. Strangers are only friends you haven’t met yet and we have a place here for everyone.

Contact: Nancy Harms

Fellowship Connections Team

The Fellowship Connection Team is committed to weaving a deeper web of connection and communication in the BUUF community. Team members contact congregants monthly to check in and offer our support with the ins and outs of BUUF.

Contact: Miriam Woito

Congregational Care Team

We creating a mutually supportive beloved community. Our Congregational Care Team (CCT) oversees and organizes requests for assistance from members and friends in need. Care can come in many forms including emotional, financial, and spiritual.

Contact: pastoralcare@boiseuu.org

Spiritual Growth and Transformation

Religious Exploration for Children and Youth

A sacred space, both physical and emotional, for children and youth to explore, discover, grow and transform. Within this space, we strive to nurture our children and youth to become compassionate and justice seeking individuals who are centered in the values of our religious community and surrounded in love, and who know and act on the understanding that they are an integral part of our congregational life.

Contact: Emily Emerson Paige

Adult Religious Education

We are perpetually awed and excited by the breadth and depth of topics folks here are knowledgeable about. Adults curious about exploring our world both provide and take classes about a wide range of topics including but not limited to art, poetry, various religious studies, and democracy.

Contact: Cathy Carmen


The Inquirers Series is a new program designed to welcome newcomers into our congregation. Eight topics are covered, one per session, and the sessions are cycled throughout the year. Participants will become educated on our fellowship membership, culture, and on our wider Unitarian Universalist faith. The sessions are led and coordinated by lay leaders and our membership coordinator.

Contact: Nancy Harms


Contact: Rev. Sara

Small Groups

We are only as strong as our bonds with each other. As our congregation grows, we aim to provide more and more opportunities to find connection and a sense of belonging. Small Groups are based in identities (eg. the Men’s Group or the Young Adult’s group) and affinities (eg. knitting, quilting, reading, tabletop gaming).

Contact: Nancy Harms


Soulful Sundown

Soulful Sundown is Boise UU’s interpretation of alternative worship, focusing on contemporary music, poetic readings and contemplative moments. The team enjoys bringing the monthly themes to life in new and creative ways–creating participatory and intimate moments, asking deep questions, nourishing our spiritual lives, and sharing it all with this community.

Contact: Gem Emerson Paige


Our adult choir holds weekly rehearsals during the program year, and performs approximately every three to four weeks. The choir seeks to have fun, learn and grow as musicians, and to make rehearsal time a spiritual practice. The choir is non-audition, with the chief prerequisites to participation being a desire to sing, to learn, and to commit to the ensemble. With a wide range of musical knowledge and ability, the choir strives for musical excellence, knowing the ultimate goal is the sharing and joy found within communal singing.

Contact: Carrie Bastian


Music is a fundamental element of worship at our Fellowship. The music program is led by our talented and inspiring professional music director, Carrie Bastian, and is supported by the steady efforts of volunteers and occasional guest musicians.

Contact: Carrie Bastian


When we worship, we lift up that which is worthy of our praise, exploration, and deep reflection in our lives. Worship connects us with the most sacred mysteries and truths of life, opening us to to experience love, hope, and transformation. We gather together in spiritual community because we need constant reminders of what matters most in life. We worship to connect with our inner life, to embody and celebrate our deepest human values that we may learn to live with more wisdom, more connection, and more compassion.

Contact: Sharene Watsen