Information on Ministerial Search Committee Selection Process
“Searching for a pastor is sacred work. In most traditions, the opportunity comes to only a few, and then only once in a lifetime of faithful membership” – Albon.org
UCV is now in the second of three years of transition time that has led us to examine, explore and renew our understanding of who we are and who we want to become as a community.
Over the next year, a Ministerial Search Committee will lead the congregation through a series of workshops and forums to discern what UCV is looking for in its next settled Minister, and then embark on an extensive search for the best candidate, who would begin in the summer of 2023.
Input is requested from every member, considering carefully who you want to serve on this Search Committee to best represent the interests and aspirations of UCV. Names will be collected and nominations made for a congregational vote. (See the bottom of this page to submit your nominations!)
Mar 7–28 Phone/email campaign to all members to speak about the process of selecting a Ministerial Search Committee and how to nominate members; information also provided in the Monthly and weekly e-bulletins throughout March
Mar 13 Forum on the process of selecting a Ministerial Search Committee and how to nominate members
Mar 28 Nominations close
Mar 29–Apr 6 Board selects a slate from the nominees
April 8 Ballots are sent and voting starts
April 22 Voting ends
May 1 At Sunday service introduce the Ministerial Search Committee!
The Ministerial Search Committee will be announced at the Sunday May 1st service, and then begin their work in earnest! More information regarding the Search Process will be presented in a Board Forum on March 13, and members will begin to receive phone calls and emails to gather your input very soon.
The Ministerial Search Committee is charged with:
- Finding a ministerial candidate to present to the congregation for calling as UCV’s next Settled Minister.
- Working with the Interim Minister to lead the congregation through a deep self-examination, and to inform the Search Committee of the qualities and experience required of the ministerial candidate.
- Utilizing all available resources in the search process, including UCV Interim Minister and staff, UUA Ministerial Transitions Office, CUC, and the Canadian Transitions Coach (Rev. Stephen Atkinson).
The Search Committee shall note:
- Search Committee members should represent the entire congregation, and not speak only for or represent identity groups.
- The Search Committee should garner the trust of the congregation, by respecting the confidentiality of the process while being transparent and communicative of where in the process they are.
- The Search Committee should be in touch with the changing nature of the congregation.
- The Search Committee should be responsible to a good process for itself, the congregation, and Unitarian Universalism.
- There is no such thing as a failed search. If no qualified candidate is identified in the first year’s cycle, the search can extend to the subsequent cycle.
- This strategic work isn’t just about identifying a skilled leader but about finding one with the right mix of skills and character. You must balance multiple points of view about what kind of pastor is needed — and sometimes the advice you get is conflicting. You have to evaluate the candidate’s preaching, teaching, management and pastoral skills. It can be helpful to focus a search around these two questions: Can this candidate love us? Is this candidate competent?
- It will be important to start your work by creating a personal connection to your fellow committee members. It will also be important to develop an early understanding of how decisions will be made within the committee.
Search Committee Member Qualifications:
The candidate must be willing to commit to fulfilling the Charge to the Ministerial Search Committee, as stated above.
The Candidate must be available for the majority of the ministerial search process, including the kick-off retreat, congregational survey, listening sessions, development of congregational record, ministerial search cycle, and all pre-candidating weekends. It is expected the process will run from June to May of the 2022-2023 church-year, though if no ministerial candidate is called in the first year the committee will be asked to participate in a second ministerial search cycle the following year.
- Personal Qualities/Characteristics; Ideally, all members of the committee will exhibit the following qualities and characteristics.
- Committed; has demonstrated and continues to feel a deep commitment to the current and future health & prosperity of the church.
- Big-picture view; willing to reflect on and step back from personal biases of identity, interests, and roles to represent and consider the wants and needs of the whole church, not just those of individuals or groups of interest.
- Discerning; able to see and understand people, to ask tough questions, and to show good judgement.
- Confidential; can respect and keep the work of the committee in confidence when required, even with a spouse or significant others.
- Curious; can stay engaged and open to learning a new process.
- Humble; understands the importance of a diverse committee, and that others may have a different but no less valid experience or opinion.
- Respectful; can hear and consider all voices on the committee with equal regard.
- Supportive; can provide physical and emotional support of other team members as they all proceed through this sometimes-arduous process.
- Trusting & trustworthy; can be trusted to complete assigned tasks and to trust others to complete theirs.
- Sense of humor; can keep the weight and responsibility of the committee in perspective and use humor to stay in relationship with other committee members throughout the process.
- Self-confident; Ability to handle conflict, receive feed-back, and hard decision-making.
- Keeps boundaries; Ability to keep good personal boundaries, not burdening the team or task with personal issues.
The first important step in the process is for you as a member of UCV to submit your Search Committee Nomination Form.
This can be done in three ways:
- Use this Link to submit your nominations: https://vancouver.breezechms.com/form/searchcommittee
- drop off or mail a paper copy to the church or
- provide your nomination information to the UCV phone caller who will be contacting you.