Our 2016-2017 annual theme holds great possibility for an exciting year at UUCG: Singing the Journey invites us to explore the ways we “harmonize” with our voices, as well as with our time, talents, and treasures on our journey towards being the radically welcoming sanctuary in a green space we envision. Our programs this year will be built on monthly themes based on beloved songs from our hymnals, inviting us to go deeper into the stories, metaphors, and meanings in the words we sing.
Singing the Journey is also an appropriate annual theme as we embark on a journey with a new Choir Director. During the month of August the Board of Trustees and I will form a small Choir Director Search Team to engage in the process of finding the person to lead and build our choir and music program over the coming years. Our plan is for this person to start in January 2017! The Chalice Lighter Call is still open to contribute to funding a portion of this position in 2017 to move us towards fully funding it in 2018. Please spread the word! Here’s the link to share with your friends and family: Chalice Lighter
Singing the Journey also speaks to the journey we are taking together and separately through my time on Sabbatical. Our Sabbatical Committee (Paige Varner, Wally Watson, Karen Smith, Barbara Stahnke, and Laura de Castro) is hard at work preparing for this precious time for both the congregation and for me to go deeper into our sense of calling, to renew our spirits and our commitments, and to chart a course for the next few years of our shared ministry together.
On Sunday, August 28, from 1:00 – 3:00 the Reverend Kenn Hurto, Lead Executive for the UUA Southern Region, will lead a workshop with the congregation to explore the work of the congregation while I am on Sabbatical. That workshop will start after we have lunch together, about 1:00, and end at 3:00. He will then meet with key leaders to determine the next steps in planning the congregation’s activities during this Sabbatical time.
Up to and during the Sabbatical, there will be a special bulletin board set aside with information about what I’ll be doing, updates from me about the activities I’m engaged in, the work the congregation is doing, and key dates and contact information while I’m way. The Sabbatical Committee is working on a brochure with lots of information to respond to the questions I’m sure many of you have, and we’ll have lots of time over the next few months to make sure people’s questions are answered before I go.
I’m here through the end of 2016 … my Sabbatical time will be combined with vacation and study leave officially beginning on December 26. I’ll return to the office on July 31, 2017. I am excited about the fall programs and Singing the Journey with you this year.
With much love,