What’s the process for getting our next called minister?
In the UU denomination, the congregation decides on and calls ministers. This process will take place from about the middle of 2015 to the middle of 2016. The entire membership is involved in nominating and electing a search committee. The committee, composed of five-to-seven individuals, will spend hundreds of hours over that year in the process of searching for a new candidate minister. They will bring that candidate to the Church for a week, which will culminate with a vote by the congregation to accept that candidate.
What does an Interim Minister do?
Interim Ministers do more than help lead worship. They are specially training and accredited to help congregations with the transition between called ministers. This includes the emotional changes with a beloved minister departing, identifying perhaps unrecognized challenges the congregation may be facing, and prepare the way for the next called minister. Much more can be learned about Interim Ministers from the book “In the Interim” edited by Barbara Child and Keith Kron - a number of copies are available for borrowing from the Church library.
Why a two-year interim period?
The interim period was originally a single year, and started so congregations didn’t have to begin their ministerial search while their current minister was still in pulpit. It later expanded to two years so the congregation, with the help of an interim minister, has a chance to look ahead and consider what they want in their next called minister before beginning the search. The two year period is now the norm, with no UU congregations in transition entering into a one year interim period in 2012.
What is a covenant and how does it affect Reverend Breeden as a Minister Emeritus?
It is a long established tradition between UU Ministers to have a covenant between any called Ministers at a church and any Minister Emeritus. This covenant, made to support the best interests of the ministers and the congregation, lays out expectations for interactions so roles are clear. In the case of a recently retired Minister, it typically gives the retired minister some time away to give both them and the congregation a chance to let go and look forward.