Interim Minister’s Blog – August 2014 – Words of Joy

I am thrilled to have the opportunity to serve the Starr King Unitarian Universalist Church as your interim minister, beginning on August 15th. Following are a few words of self-introduction.

In 2002, after 25 years in settled ministry, I decided to move into the specialized field of interim ministry. I have served as Interim Minister to nine congregations of varied sizes and styles in the last 12 years since then, in Stockton, Marin, Grass Valley, Carmel, Santa Barbara, Fremont, Humboldt and Berkeley California, and in Tucson, Arizona. I have enjoyed this specialized form of ministry, and I look forward to serving as your Interim Minister for this upcoming year.

My special training relevant to interim work includes long-time service in the Pacific Central District as the Ministerial Settlement Representative (the liaison between the UUA and congregations in search of a minister), long-time service on the PCD Conflict Management Team, training in growth and extension through the UUA, and training in interim ministry through the UUA and the interfaith Interim Ministry Network. As of June 2005, I became an Accredited Interim Minister with the Unitarian Universalist Association.

I have a grown son and two grandchildren. When I am not actively engaging in ministry, I enjoy visiting with family, amateur astronomy, poetry, attending local theater, singing in local choirs, and travel, especially on archeological tours.

The interim period between settled ministers is an important and potentially very productive time in the life of a congregation—a time to explore where the congregation has been and where it is going, a time to experiment with various forms of worship and explore organizational structure, a time to evaluate and assess current needs, to work toward a healthy and solvent future, and to prepare for a new settled minister. There is much we can accomplish together during this interim period, and I am eager to begin. I look forward to my first Sunday service among you on August 17th, and to the many opportunities there will be to meet and talk with each of you. Meanwhile, have a wonderful and refreshing remainder of the summer.

See you all soon,
Joy Atkinson