We are now in Phase 3 (of 7) of the search for a settled minister.  We basically froze the process at this step last year due to the pandemic. We had hoped that thing might be easier by now. Our transitions team is still in place and ready to go. The members of the team are Annie New, Mark Holt, Carol Trout, Lisa Rocket, and Jill Rose.

The next step is to form a Search Committee. The Search Committee will be made up of 8 church members who are not currently serving on the Board. Four will be elected by the general membership and four will be appointed by the Board. Members who serve on the committee will be required to attend a retreat with an advisor from the UUA, to conduct a congregational survey, and to screen ministerial applicants on the membership’s behalf. Normally the retreat would be two full days in person. I imagine it will still be held via Zoom and probably fewer hours in length, those decisions will be made based on what conditions are like when the time comes.

In the coming days, all members will receive an email from someone on the Board, the Transitions Team, or the Nominating Committee. The email will contain 7 questions about who each member would like to see nominated for the Search Committee and what is important to them for the church going forward. The email will be followed up by a phone call from someone om the board or the transitions team. This is your chance to nominate yourself or another member to run for the committee and give your input on what you would like to have in a settled minister. Yes, we did this last year but would like a fresh look at what our members are thinking and feeling now. Keep in mind as you think about the suggestions that we need as diverse a team as possible for this to make sure the varied needs of our congregation are met.

Information on the progress of the search will be updated in the church newsletter, on the website, and in the eblast. The search process is, by design, a slow process. It may seem like things are not moving very quickly but be assured we are right on track according to the timeline established by the UUA. This is not a process to be rushed through and the timeline reflects that. In the meantime, we are in great hands with Rev. Michelle.

If you have an interest in diving deep into what the search process looks like, the handbook we are working from is available to read or download from the UUA website. You may find it by simply Googling UUA Settlement Handbook or by visiting UUA.org and using the search feature there. Thank you in advance for your input and support as we undertake this task together as a Beloved Community.

Cynthia Miller