Dear Members and Friends of KUUC:
What a profound honor and joy to be coming back to KUUC, after 10 years, to serve as your Sabbatical Minister from February through June! What an honor to be trusted by your Board and your Minister to serve you well in this time that Michael is away. I am thrilled, excited, and deeply curious. My heart and my brain keep coming back to the wonderful thought of T.S. Eliot:
We shall not cease from exploration,
and the end of all our exploring will be
to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time
You were the first congregation I was invited to serve when I moved to New Hampshire in 2007. Since then I’ve served our congregations in Concord, Nashua, and Peterborough, NH., and Burlington, VT; all as an Accredited Interim Minister. I’ve also served on our NNE District Board, and on the UU Ministers Association Board. I’ve learned and grown; made mistakes and learned and grown some more. Our mistakes are always good teachers if we allow them to be so.
In a service 10 years ago, the KUUC congregation and I honored both the trials and triumphs the people of this church had weathered since the congregation was gathered in 1824. Two of the original 12 members were women; yet it is their husbands who were listed on the Founders Plaque. That wouldn’t happen today, I said.
On January 24th, 1895, some 800 people “squeezed themselves into the new Unitarian church building, 69 Washington St. This building. Did you know just 6 members of the congregation made the decision to purchase the land under our feet? No vote, no discussion with the congregation. Just 6. That wouldn’t happen today, I said.
Did you know that the controversy over that decision of 6 led to the creation of a Board of Trustees fully empowered to act in behalf of the church by election by the entire congregation? Conflict happened, compromises were made; and members through the years have kept this beautiful sanctuary open for worship in this faith of exploration, deliberation, and spiritual awakening, through good times and hard.
What should we honor now, 10 years later? What are you proud of? What are you working on that gives you joy? What will you do with your core idea of mission: commitment, compassion and community? What is the vision, the inspiration that moves you toward this beautiful core? I am excited to think of having these conversations with you over coffee or when we break bread together.
Know that my key roles as your Sabbatical Minister are twofold: to ensure the staff feels supported by a supervisor who is working with them to field questions or challenges that come up, and to ensure you that you have a minister you can trust to be on call for you, should you need or want a pastoral call. I delight to be singing with the Keene Chorale at the church on Tuesday evenings this semester, so I will be at church in afternoons most Tuesdays. My cell phone is 603-554-2294. Please feel invited to call.
I am excited to see the stellar group of clergy and lay people, UU and beyond, who will speak from your pulpit through the spring. Michael invited you to use this time as a sabbatical time for you as well as for him; I know your souls and spirits will be well nurtured on Sunday mornings.
On my first Sunday leading worship with you, February 4th, I want to hold up the legacy of one of my heroes, Nelson Mandela, who taught us all never to underestimate the power of one single person to change the world for good. Each one of us has that power within, if only we dare to use it.
Thank you all for sharing this sabbatical gift with me.
In faith, Olivia
Rev. Olivia Holmes
KUUC Sabbatical Ministe
During the sabbatical period, Rev. Olivia Holmes will serve as the Sabbatical Minister—providing up to 160 hours of total coverage. The duties of the Sabbatical Minister will consist of the following:
- Creating and leading worship once a month; the first Sunday of February, March, and May, the second Sunday of April and our annual Flower Communion service on June 17th.
- Making regular contact with staff for the purposes of providing supervision and evaluation. Rev. Holmes will complete the final evaluation for each staff member based on their job description, professional goals and mid-year review (which will be completed by Rev. Hall prior to his sabbatical).
- Rev. Holmes will, conduct pastoral only as much as her limited hours allow and provide a report of her activities.
SABBATICAL WORSHIP SERVICES
Feb. 4: Olivia Holmes (Sabbatical Minister)
Feb. 11: Rev. Kevin Jagoe (Brooklyn, NY)
Feb. 18: Rev. Dr. M’ellen Kennedy (Springfield, VT)
Feb 25: Judy Saunders (KUUC)
March 4: Olivia Holmes (Sabbatical Minister)
March 11: Rev. Patrick McLaughlin, (Manchester, NH UU)
March 18: Rev. Sara Hayman, (Ellsworth, ME UU)
March 25: Rev. Sandra Whippie (Keene, NH)
April 1: Kali Frye
April 8: Olivia Holmes (Sabbatical Minister)
April 15: Rev. Mark Glovin
April 22: Rabbi Amy Loewenthal (Congregation Ahavas Achim)
April 29: Music Sunday (KUUC)
May 6: Olivia Holmes (Sabbatical Minister)
May 13: Rev. Sylvia Stocker (Brunswick, ME)
May 20: Young Adult Group (KUUC)
May 27: Rev. Hank Peirce (Reading, MA)
June 3: Hazel Erdoben (KUUC)
June 10: “Gratitude Sunday” (KUUC)
June 17: Olivia Holmes (Sabbatical Minister)
June 24: Summer Services Begin