On February 19, a letter from President Laurie Boddie and Rev. Suzelle Lynch went out to all UUCW members with exciting news about an upcoming shift in UUCW’s ministry configuration.
For a number of years, UUCW was served by Rev. Suzelle and, sequentially, part-time Assistant Ministers Rev. Lori Hlaban and Rev. Joyce Palmer (we also had Kimberlee Tomczak Carlson as part-time Intern Minister for two years). Team ministry was a blessing for members, staff, ministers, and the wider community, affording us different perspectives, gifts and strengths.
So when Rev. Suzelle proposed that she downshift to three-quarter time work through December 31, 2021 and that we bring a one-quarter time Assistant Minister on board, we agreed that there were many benefits for our congregation in this idea. We are now pleased to announce that the Rev. Denise Cawley will be joining our UUCW staff team as quarter-time Assistant Minister for Pastoral Care beginning March 8. Rev. Denise is a graduate of Meadville Lombard Theological School in Chicago, and she lives in Milwaukee. You can find out more about her HERE.
Frequently Asked Questions
Because this is a newer ministry configuration for UUCW, we know you may have questions. We hope the information below might offer some answers.
QUESTION: What is the focus of the Assistant Minister position?
ANSWER: The Assistant Minister’s primary focus is Pastoral Care. They will work with the Lay Pastoral Care Team, CommUUnity Connections, the UUCW staff and volunteers to ensure a caring community for our members.
Q: What will Rev. Suzelle’s schedule be like?
A: Rev. Suzelle will work three weeks on, one week off. Note that while this is a new arrangement for us at UUCW, other UU churches use this type of scheduling for ministers working three-quarter time.
Q: Will the Assistant Minister lead Sunday services?
A: Yes, the Assistant Minister will occasionally lead full worship services over the next ten months. We also plan to have the Assistant Minister assist Rev. Suzelle and/or the Worship Ministry Team in worship at least once per month.
Q: Does this mean Rev. Suzelle is going to leave UUCW?
A: We understand that members may be wondering about this. Rev. Suzelle assures us that she is not planning to leave.
Q: Could this new ministry team configuration continue beyond December 31, 2021?
A: We are open to that possibility, and we will evaluate based on our experience through the year.
Q: Will additional volunteers be needed to help with this shift?
A: Yes. The Worship Ministry team will assume responsibility for a few more worship services per year, and is in need of volunteer Worship Coordinators. Also, as we plan toward resuming in-person services, our Sunday Usher, Greeter, and Hospitality Teams will gear back up, and more technology-savvy volunteers may be needed to help us continue our online worship. Contact the office to offer your help!
If you have additional questions, please contact the Board of Trustees.