It is hard to believe we are nearly one month into the new church program year and into our transition period. In this short period of time, we have already witnessed many small changes, as we welcome Reverend Pam Allen-Thompson and begin the necessary work of transition.
Each of us has experienced many transitions in our lives and found some to be more comfortable than others. This transition from a settled minister is new for many of us, and we may find ourselves curious about what we as a congregation might be called to do over the next two years. Yes, that’s right, what will we be called to do as a congregation?
We are very fortunate that the UUA has programming for developing interim ministers to work with congregations such as ours. Rev. Pam has a strong background as an interim minister and will be working with us to navigate this time of change. Your Board of Trustees is working hand-in-hand with Rev. Pam, the Mid-America Region and others, to help in this process and keep everyone informed as much as possible.
The next big event in this process is a start-up retreat that will be held at the church on Saturday, October 26. This retreat is facilitated by someone from the Mid-America region (as a free service to People’s) and will be attended by Rev. Pam, the Board of Trustees, the Transition Team, and representatives from almost all of the church committees. We do not yet have an agenda for that retreat, as this will be finalized later in October. However, we will have an informational session for the congregation after the Sunday service on November 3, 2013. We will report on the activities of the retreat, answer questions and discuss next steps in the interim process. Our goal throughout this process is to share as much information as possible, hear the concerns of anyone, and help all of us to move the church forward.
In the meanwhile, what will we be called to do as a congregation? Oftentimes, no more than we have done throughout the years: be present, listen to each other, express our beliefs and concerns, be open to opportunity, give ourselves time to get to know each other and how we work together and live out our UU values and principles. In addition, during this unique time in our history, we are also called to participate in the conversation about who we are as a church, who we want to be as a church and how we can reach our goals as a church.
Early in 2014, we will begin our church-wide conversation around forming the Minister Search Committee. To best prepare ourselves for that conversation, let us work with Rev. Pam to understand and practice what needs to happen in order for us to do our best at forming this important committee.
During times of change, it can be hard to let go of what we know. Different can seem bizarre, confusing, odd or uncomfortable. If along the way, you find things odd, confusing, not to your liking – please speak with Rev. Pam or a member of the Board of Trustees. Together, we will successfully navigate this transition and continue to be a positive religious presence in our community.
On behalf of your Board of Trustees—
Sue Caulfield, President