“What a difference a year makes! A year ago May we said yes to each other. A year ago May we took the bold and tender step to venture forward together. Our journey started in earnest last September at our Ingathering Service and now here at the close of our first year together I am filled with gratitude for the opportunity to be your minister — awe at the level of care, connection, and commitment you all have for this our beloved community and hope for the years to come.”
These are the words that began my first report to your Annual Meeting in June of 2010. Now, 12 years later –– what a difference a dozen years makes! I end this year as I have every year as your minister with a deep sense of gratitude. Being your minister has been the honor of a lifetime. I am grateful for the time we have spent together. Grateful that you allowed me to be part of your life’s journey. Grateful for all the ways we have grown together. Grateful for the ways in which we took risks together. Grateful for the ways we stayed in the journey together even in moments of disagreement. Grateful for the tender moments, the moments of celebration, and all the moments in-between.
I will be forever grateful to have worked with such a bold, resilient, and abundantly talented staff; Fran Clancy, Anne Watson Born, Amanda Graff, Heather Beasley Doyle, Carson Cooman, and Akela Franklin, who left us earlier this Spring. It was a joy and a privilege to be a part of such a collaborative, gifted and dedicated team.
Now is the time for us to say goodbye. When I leave at the end of the month it will be the last time we will have contact with each other for two years. To that end, I will be deleting my FUUSN Facebook account and removing myself from all FUUSN social media connections. This is in keeping with the guidelines of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association. It might feel harsh and there are good reasons for it. Most importantly, Rev. Parisa Parsa, your interim minister, must have time to do her work without any interference whatsoever from me in anyway. Most importantly we must learn to, emotionally, let each other go. The letting go is the hardest part because I will forever care about what happens to you, individually and as a congregation.
I am so grateful for the time we had together — to have been one small part of such an amazingly caring, kind, engaged and otherwise remarkable group of people. Thank you for the many ways you share your hearts, spirits, gifts, time, and selves to make FUUSN such a special community.