In early September, Rev. Lydia Ferrante-Roseberry informed us that she will be ending her ministry with us after 16 years, effective at the end of January. (Her resignation letter and a message from the President of the Board can be found at this link.)

You may naturally wonder, “what happens now?”

First, it is our great honor and privilege to plan a fitting and meaningful ending to what has been a beautiful and long tenure as our minister. We will be planning celebrations and closing rituals, as well as having numerous sad and sweet conversations with her, as we prepare to say goodbye.

Our Transition Team (made up of representatives from the Board, Committee on Shared Ministries, our Leadership Development Committee and the Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Team) is busy planning for the various aspects of a successful transition. One of the most significant tasks is hiring an Interim Minister, who will serve us for two years before we call our next settled minister. This process is one well laid out and supported by the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA).

We have gathered a group of trusted and experienced members to serve as our Interim Search Committee (Constance Holden, Rosemary Arp, Mary Stackpole, Paolo Sparti, and Paul Austin). They will begin meeting in January, and will guide us through the UUA’s process of being matched with an Interim Minister in the spring of 2024, with an anticipated starting date for the new Interim Minister around August 1.

Since Rev. Lydia is leaving at the end of January, we will have about a six month period without a full time minister. During that time, much like we have during Lydia’s previous sabbaticals, our congregation will take the lead in providing meaningful services, caring for one another, and keeping the place humming along.

To help us with that, we have hired a part time minister to provide some consistent support to the teams who provide our Sunday morning services and pastoral care. Rev. Teri Schwartz will be in the pulpit two Sundays per month, with the exact schedule to be worked out with our robust team of lay Service Associates. In addition, she will be available for pastoral care and consultation with our Lay Pastoral Care Associates and Neighborhood Connectors. We feel very fortunate that this minister was available to help us out during this time of transition. It is a reminder that we are not going through this change by ourselves, but instead are being held and cared for by the larger UU community.

Helpful Resources:

FAQs about our Fellowship’s Ministerial Transition

Details about our Fellowship’s Ministerial Transition Timeline

UUA’s Transitional Ministry Handbook

Other UUA ministerial transition resources

In the Interim, by Barbara Child and Keith Kron