This week, we are addressing the question “What can we expect from a developmental minister?”
Developmental ministers have the following in common:
They are very experienced ministers. They have usually served in multiple locations, positions, and capacities. They have been successful in a variety of ministries. They have a strength in one or more areas that is a good fit for the congregational goals, in addition to the normal ministerial functions.
The Board Minister Selection Task Force has been working closely with UUA staff, and our involvement with UUA staff will continue right through the developmental minister’s tenure at UUCM. This is a shared ministry – both the congregation and the minister are going to be learning and growing through this process.
Keep the questions coming!
We have been hearing some questions about our process for selecting a new minister so we decided to address a couple of them in this Board Update, and we’ll keep progressing through the Developmental Goals and many other aspects of our minister selection process in future Board Updates.
The Board Updates have focused on Developmental Goals. Are there other qualities/attributes/skill sets which the Board is looking for in a new minister? Yes, of course! Not only do we want to see in a minister alignment with the developmental goals but also (and these are in no particular order) excellence in sermons, CEO skills, people skills, pastoral care, spiritual leadership, alignment of their values with our values, and more. In future Board Updates, we will share more about our selection criteria.
Are there applicants? Our position was posted on the UUA website last week, so we don’t have applicants yet . . . but we will! We have a vibrant church in a major metropolitan area that will be desirable for candidates. Also, we are the only UU church in all of MN seeking a minister, so if someone wants to be in MN, we are the only option!
Keep the questions coming!
And now we have a request of you: If you have experience or interest in fundraising or finance, talk to Fred Hulting or any UUCM Board Member about the opportunities that are available.
Last week, in our Board Update, we started looking at the four development goals the Board has identified as the most important in selecting a developmental minister to partner with in implementing those goals. The goal that we are exploring further this week is “Leadership Development” which is also an essential aspect of our next goal “Imagining the Future.” If we don’t do leadership development well, we won’t be able to execute well our other goals in the future.
Read on to learn more about our current leadership situation, future vision and next-steps!
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As we reflected on the feedback we’ve received from the congregation and from the Board Listening Sessions, we discerned four goals that we as a church need to explore in order to move more fully into our mission. Our plan is to find a developmental minister who is a good fit for partnering with us on those goals.
Our first goal is “Develop and implement strategies for intentional growth”. We know from feedback at the Listening Sessions that, within the congregation, there are many mixed feelings about growth. We hear you! We understand that collectively we want the best aspects of UUCM to endure. The reality is that we are already growing – best to be intentional about it . . . Our intent is to enhance our community and the formation of interpersonal connections to serve current members as well as new members.
The remaining goal areas are “Leadership Development”, “Long-Term Strategic Planning”, and “Board / Minister Partnership.” We’ll discuss those further in an upcoming Board Update. And as always, please seek out any member of the Board with your feedback.
The Minister Selection Task Force is busily updating documents which are the foundation of the materials we will make available on the UUA website for prospective ministers. On the website, prospective ministers can learn more about us and decide if they want to apply for our position. Our interim ministers have told us that they believe we have a strong portfolio due to our strong financial position, congregational growth, and new church building among other favorable attributes, and we think it is likely that there will be nation-wide interest in the position. We plan to find a minister that will help us work to achieve the goals we have identified using information gathered from the annual survey and the board listening sessions. Next week, we will share information about these goals. Our Annual Meeting is scheduled for May and we are hopeful that we will have a new minister (or minister team or other possible configuration) to share at that time, or soon after that.
In order to provide more transparency about the process of selecting a new minister, the Board will be providing weekly updates on our progress. (And note that although we’ve used “minister” we are also open to a minister team or other possible configurations.) UUCM has a long history of selecting called ministers who do not have a pre-agreed term length. For a variety of reasons, we have decided it would be best to take a different course for our next minister. We are pivoting to a development ministry model and it is the responsibility of the Board to select the best applicant. We have recently identified our Selection Task Force which is comprised of Robert Brooks, Bill Arnold, Julia Antonsen, and Becky Halat, who are working with Christine Purcell, the Transitions Program Manager at the UUA. We are on track! Next week, we will be sharing more about the developmental ministry model and more details about the process so stay tuned! If you have any questions, please ask any Board member.