Report from the Ministerial Search Committee
By Mike Morgan
The Ministerial Search Committee (MSC) met in retreat on April 18-19 with the Rev. Ann Marie Alderman, our Ministerial Search Representative from the UUA. We assigned these committee roles: Chair—Kathy Morante and Jennie Gemignani (co-chairs); Packet Editor and Distributor—Caren Spencer-Smith and Gene Bryant; Ar- ranger—Caren Spencer-Smith and Mary Hinton; Reference Checker—Mary Hinton, Linda Berry, and Gene Bryant; Secretary—Mike Morgan, Jennie Gemignani, Mary Hinton; Survey Coordinator—Linda Berry, Gene Bryant; Treasurer—Gene Bryant. Subsequently, Kathy Morante resigned from the committee because of family obligations. The Board will be asked to add one or two additional members to the MSC from those already considered by the congregation. Jennie Gemignani will remain chairperson.
We developed the following covenant for our committee:
We covenant to:
1. Participate in and facilitate the work of the Ministerial Search Committee (MSC), with each person doing a fair share.
2. Express our honest opinions with respect for the feelings and opinions of other group members.
3. Listen with patience and an open mind, not only to other MSC members but to all members of the congregation.
4. Hold as our highest priority the best interests of our congregation and its future.
5. Maintain confidentiality regarding all MSC activities and discussions, being especially careful not to compromise our ministerial candidates.
Furthermore, we covenant to:
1. Hear and respect the point-of-view of each other and to react with kindness, especially when we disagree.
2. Remain on-task, minimizing personal drama and giving all group members an opportunity to talk (“don’t suck all the air out of the room”).
3. Be sensitive to all manner of diversity and avoid discrimination or appearance of discrimination in the work we do.
4. Work as a team, providing help to each other as needed and owning individually the decisions we make as a group.
5. Select the best candidate for our church and stand united in presenting that candidate to our congregation.
Timeline: We expect to have a settled minister arrive in August or September 2015. Many things will happen before then.
A major goal due November 2014 is that the MSC will have gathered and compiled information from the congregation about their wishes for a minister using surveys, community meetings, and interviews. During this same time frame, the board will be working to develop a compensation package and draft agreement.
By November 30, 2014, we will have completed our online Application for Minister and posted our Congregational Record (CR) to let interested candidates know of our position.
From January through March 2015 the MSC will select perhaps three “pre-candidates” from those who have indicated an interest in us. The first-choice candidate will be made an offer on the first Thursday of April 2015.
These major time points are just the tip of the iceberg. We encourage our members and friends to share their thoughts and wishes with us, especially in the information-gathering portion of this process. A time for questions and answers has been set aside for Saturday evening at the All Church Retreat, but we welcome your input at any time.
Later on, in order to fulfill our covenant to maintain the confidentiality of ministerial candidates, we will be unable to share some details with you.
We appreciate your trust in allowing us to do this.