Linda ToppBy the time you read this, the Interim Search Committee will be in negotiations with our new interim minister.  The work of an interim minister is different from the work of a called minister and therefore will be different than what we have been used to as Rev. Mark Ward has served us.

Yes, the interim minister will act as the Executive in our governance structure, and be responsible for (but not necessarily lead) all Sunday worship service, and act as lead for pastoral care, just as Rev. Mark has.  But the activities below are actually the heart of their work at UUCA and are literally part of the agreement that our interim minister will enter into with our Board of Trustees.  The interim minister will address:

Heritage: Review how UUCA has been shaped and formed by encouraging and hearing all the stories about the Congregation’s past as the foundation upon which the present rests, and embracing the rich variety that makes up the Congregation.

Leadership: Review the membership needs and its ways of organizing and developing new and effective leadership by providing opportunities to examine the types of leadership needed for new leaders to emerge, and for seasoned leaders to recommit or to refocus their gifts.

Mission: Guide us in redefining UUCA’s sense of purpose and direction by revisiting the faith community’s identity and core values; working to develop, update, and revitalize mission and vision statements; and reviewing strategic and tactical plans including stewardship and the financial health of the congregation.

Connections: Revitalize or develop the association, interfaith, and community relationships a congregation builds outside of itself.

Future: Develop congregational and pastoral profiles that position the congregation for its next ministry, including a healthy and honest assessment of focus points so that the congregation can turn its energy toward proactive decision-making for the future.

Anti-Racism, Anti-Oppression and Multicultural Awareness:  The Congregation and the Interim Minister are committed to understanding the ways systems of oppression within and beyond our Congregation are perpetuated and agree to collaborate on the development of a joint process of reflection and growth to ensure progress.  This includes, but is not limited to, the ways in which the characteristics of dominant cultures live in our practices, systems, procedures, and our very lives.

This is an incredibly exciting and a little bit scary time filled with possibility and change.  As far as I’m concerned, “possibility” is super-energizing while “change” has that shadow side of loss.  Whenever a person or institution changes (and it is almost always intended to be a “good change”), something is lost.  Here’s hoping we have the resilience and grace to leave room for the grieving as we invite everyone to head for new territories.

Linda Topp, Director of Administration