Our Search For a Settled Minister
Our church is at a very important stage in its history, and every member is part of what will be unfolding, as we seek, choose, and install our next permanent minister. Since our beginnings in 1998, we have had four ministers: Rev. Elizabeth McMaster (1998-1991), Rev. Wyman Rousseau (1992-2008), Rev. Karen Matteson (interim, 2008-2010) and Rev. Robin Tanner (2010-2016). Rev. Leland Bond-Upson joined Piedmont UU in January as our interim minister.
The Ministerial Search Committee will be made up of seven members, three selected by the board and four voted on by the entire congregation at a congregational meeting in March. The Board of Trustees and Leadership Development Council are currently seeking possible members for that important assignment. It is an assignment that requires time and hard work but is very rewarding and very important.
As part of their work this summer, the Ministerial Search Committee will be surveying the entire congregation about their expectations and hopes, organizing small group meetings across the congregation, conducting individual interviews of members and reaching out to the community to interview leaders of other faith communities. They will prepare a large amount of information about our congregation to make available to prospective candidates. This will include demographics, our church history, our social justice history, financial history, etc. When all of their preparations are complete in September 2017, our UUA consultant will approve the committee to have access to all ministerial candidates who are seeking a new ministry.
The Ministerial Search Committee will then review the resumes of candidates of interest, conduct telephone interviews and in February 2018, select three or four to come to Charlotte on different weekends to be interviewed and travel to guest churches to conduct services and preach. The team will make its final recommendation in early March 2018, and if the minister they have chosen accepts, he or she will come to Piedmont in April for ten days of meetings and services. The entire congregation will then vote on the candidate recommended by the Ministerial Search Committee. Details will be worked out for the new minister to begin at Piedmont UU in August 2018.
The board and search committee will be committed throughout this process to keeping the entire congregation as informed as possible. There will be regular articles in the newsletter. However, there is strict confidentiality about much of the search that cannot be shared, such as names of ministers being considered. Nevertheless, information will be shared throughout about the process.
While the seven member Ministerial Search Committee is responsible for taking the lead with this effort, all members will have a part in the important work of choosing the next minister to lead Piedmont UU Church!
Anne Laukaitis, Secretary
Board of Trustees