Our Negotiating team has written up a Ministerial Agreement with help from the Personnel Committee and recommended a salary. The Board of Trustees had a special meeting to discuss the proposed budget for a new Minister and approved our recommendation. The Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), reasonably enough, raised their guidelines for fair compensation this year in order to offer a cost-of-living increase, so we asked the Board to increase the amount that we will be offering. We know it will be a challenge to raise a higher amount for our new minister’s salary than what we approved for last year’s budget, but we also know that we must offer a competitive package. While we love Rev. Steve, we are very hopeful that we will call a new settled minister this spring, rather than embarking on a fourth year of Interim Ministry.
We are still compiling information and updating the work of last year’s Search Committee. By the time you read this, we will have finished that work and are about to post our “Congregational Record” on the UUA website. Ministers who are “in search” will have access to it in December. Hopefully, many ministers will be intrigued when they read about us and will throw their proverbial hats in the ring. In the meantime, we will be getting ready to interview applicants and their references by deciding on interview questions and practicing our Skype interview skills.
One of the things the UUA recommends for all congregations in Search is to do a “Beyond Categorical Think-ing” workshop to help us think about our biases – all the “isms” that get in the way of right relationship – to help us proceed with an open mind. The congregation did a workshop last year, so we did not want to ask everyone to do it again. We did want to spend some time on it as a committee, before we begin reading applications and interviewing applicants. Jess and Kiana planned a discussion for us, which we did as part of one of our weekly meetings. We know there is always more work to do, but the discussion was very helpful.
Thanks to all of you who are doing the congregation’s other important work. We are grateful for your support, as we continue our work on the Search Committee.
Carol Johnson, Charlie Atwood, Janis Gray, Kiana Diggs, Sue Kelly, Jess Murphy and Louise Grosslein (co- chairs)