Sabbatical – A time for renewal and exploration

Dear UU Churchers,

I am very grateful to announce that this summer, at the end of my eighth year of service as minister of our congregation, I will taking a four-month sabbatical from May 11 (the day after our Flower Communion Service) to Sept. 8, 2020 (in time to resume the pulpit for the first Sunday of the church year).

Sabbatical is a long tradition in ministry and academia alike, allowing for an extended time of study, reflection, rest, and renewal… all ingredients for effective ministry. In our Unitarian Universalist tradition, sabbatical leave is part of the congregation’s covenantal agreement with the minister, who generally earns one month of sabbatical per year of service up to a limit of six months.

I know this opportunity for extended renewal is a rare gift in our American culture of overwork and grind, and I am humbled and grateful for the chance to recharge my batteries in this way.

My deep hope is that this time away will be of benefit to the congregation as I return refreshed and full of new ideas and rekindled energy, and as the congregation explores new ideas and perspectives in my absence with a part-time sabbatical minister. My additional hope is that by taking my sabbatical during the summertime, my absence will be less keenly felt than it might be at other times.

I am particularly confident in the capacity of our congregational leadership and amazing staff to keep our shared ministry moving along very well after their excellent smooth handling of my parental leaves. This congregation knows from recent memory that I am only one cog in the practiced running of our operations.

Look forward to more details in the coming months as we finalize more plans, hire a part-time sabbatical minister to support the congregation, and form a sabbatical team to support the sabbatical minister and congregation alike!

In deep gratitude,
Rev. Molly