This is an exciting time in our congregation! Now that we have a Ministerial Candidate, you may be wondering what happens now? This guide will provide answers to questions you may have.
Keep reading for more information or click the photo for a pdf copy of the guide.
Our next step is the search process is “Candidating Week”:
The Ministerial Search Committee has presented an excellent candidate, Rev. Rebecca C. “Beckett” Coppola, for your consideration. Candidating week is the time for the members of KUF to have an opportunity meet with our Ministerial Candidate and then to consider extending a call to ministry.
Candidating Week is the heart of the congregation’s discernment. There will be ample opportunities for you to meet Rev. Beckett and become acquainted with her personality and professional capabilities. Equally important, Rev. Beckett and will meet and interact with as many members as possible and learn about the different committees and groups that make up the life of our congregation.
When is Candidating Week?
April 30th – May 7th 2017
Candidating Week will start with Sunday Service on April 30th. This is your first opportunity to see Rev. Beckett in action and hear her first sermon. Shared Lunch with Rev. Beckett in attendance will follow and childcare will be available. During the week Rev. Beckett will meet with the Board, various committees, and will attend a variety of social events and potlucks (accompanied by a member of your search committee). Your second opportunity to attend a service with Rev. Beckett will be on May 7th. A full schedule of events will be made available soon.
It is highly recommended that all available KUFers attend both services.
We strongly encourage everyone attend at least one event during the week with Rev. Beckett, and take the time to say hello. We know she’s incredibly excited to meet you all.
What to expect during Candidating Week:
In order to best meet expectations, it is important to consider what Candidating Week is and is not intended to be.
- Beckett will not be presenting a program of any kind at the various meetings and social gatherings. Her purpose will be to meet congregation members and friends us and get to know us and learn a bit about us.
- There will be open events planned but please note: not all events are open to everyone. Rev. Beckett will be meeting with various committees. These events will be open to members who sit on these committees. Other events are designed to accommodate KUF members over 70 years of age or the Senior Youth as examples. Attendance may be limited to people in those categories to ensure that Rev. Beckett hears from as many people as possible and so that members from every part of KUF have time dedicated to getting to know our potential new minister.
- Candidating week is not the time to campaign for your pet project or advocate for drastic changes. Feel free to share your passions or personal thoughts but now is not the time to angle for endorsement of an agenda.
- There will not be meetings or appointments available for individuals. While we have an entire week with Rev. Beckett, we have packed it with many activities. It is essential that our candidate have some down time to rest so she can be at her best when she is with us. She will also be meeting with with immigration lawyers, real estate agents and becoming familiar with Kingston and area. We want her to fall in love with us and where we live. Best to give some time for reflection and rest in order to do this.
How will we make our decision?
Candidate Week will culminate with a Special Congregational Meeting at noon on Sunday, May 7th 2017, immediately after service. The sole item of business will be to have the members of Kingston Unitarian Fellowship vote to ratify or to reject a motion put forward by the search committee to call Rev. Beckett Coppola as our next settled minister. A notice for the Special Congregational Meeting will be sent at least 10 days prior to May 7th. The motion will be included in the notice.
Important information about this meeting:
- There will be childcare available
- Beckett will NOT be present during this meeting
- There WILL be an opportunity for questions and discussion prior to voting
- This meeting will be open to all but only eligible members can vote
- In accordance with our Constitution, only those who have reached the age of 18 and have been Members of KUF for at least 30 days prior to the meeting and who have made a financial contribution of record within the current or preceding fiscal year may participate to vote.
- A sign in list of members eligible to vote will be available. This will allow us to determine whether 50% of voting members, which is quorum in this setting, are present.
- Our Constitution does not allow for proxy or absentee votes, so please plan to attend in person (If you have questions or concerns about this please contact Joe Pater, Secretary at email@example.com or Daphne Hand, President at firstname.lastname@example.org)
- The vote process will be managed by the Board of Directors
- The vote will be by secret ballot
How many people need to vote in favour of the motion for it to be successful?
The bar is set high for this vote : Ministers are advised to accept a call only if the vote is at least 95 percent in favour. The Transitions Office normally discourages ministers from accepting a vote of less than 90 percent.
Your Ministerial Search Committee is confident that this bar will be reached or exceeded, but it is even more important for you to feel that way. Please participate in this important process by getting to know Rev. Coppola during Candidate Week and voting at the May 7th meeting.
How will we know if the vote was successful?
The result will be announced for all to hear, so that the amount of support of and opposition to the candidate is known by all.
Rev. Beckett is then made aware of the result. It is normal for there to be a short delay in the announcement as the candidate considers this information.
If the call is sufficiently strong, and is offered and accepted by Rev. Beckett, the ministry begins as specified in the agreement. Our new minister could potentially start in September 2017!
What if the vote fails?
If the vote fails, or if Rev. Beckett chooses not to accept the call, then the search process will end and KUF will proceed forward without a settled minister. A search for a new interim minister will be convened, the current search committee will be disbanded, and a new search committee will eventually have to start over from the beginning.
A word on “calling” a minister:
The term “calling” a settled minister upholds the historic UU tradition of congregation polity (individual congregational governance). Only the full membership of a UU congregation can “call” a settled minister (not the Board, not any faction of the congregation, not someone outside the congregation from above telling them who will be their minister). Calling a minister implies a special bond between minister and congregation. This is a distinctive partnership in which both “affirm their intention to share in a religious pilgrimage of mutual care, joy, forbearance, self-discipline, and a desire to serve the common good”.
We, the MSC, hope you will begin to see why we believe Rev. Beckett’s style and strengths are a good match for our congregation. We appreciate the great trust you put in us to choose the best for our congregation and we look forward to joining you and Rev. Beckett for a thoughtful and joyous week!
Kelli, Gordon, Mara, Bob, Sandra and Kim
An important addendum:
*********ALLERGY ALERT*********ALLERGY ALERT**********
We will need to be extremely careful when preparing and sharing dishes at our shared lunches and potlucks. Rev. Beckett has both food ALLERGIES and food INTOLERANCES. We want to ensure that she can eat with us and that everyone is safe and well during our time together.
In Rev. Beckett’s words:
“I appreciate your attention and care of my food allergy and intolerances very much!
I have a food allergy to shellfish (all clams, oysters, scallops, mussels, shrimp, crawfish, lobster, etc. etc.). If there are any hot dishes with shellfish in them I will have to leave. If there are cold dishes with shellfish in them I likely won’t eat anything.
I have food intolerances to gluten (wheat, barley, rye), eggplant, and quinoa. While these aren’t life threatening allergies exposure can make me very sick.
Thank you for your understanding, my apologies for any inconvenience, and please let me know if I should make arrangements to bring food that’s safe for me, which I am more than happy to do.”
**Please do not prepare any foods that include shellfish. You could consider not making foods that are included on the list of intolerances. Please label all dishes clearly on card stock. Below are resources that are useful so that we do not have cross contamination of foods when they are being prepared at home and when they are being shared at KUF. THANK YOU for your understanding and attention to this matter**
At our shared food events we will plan to:
- Have foods that are Rev. Beckett safe on one table and foods that contain foods on the intolerance list on the other.
- Each dish will be labeled.
- Each dish will have it’s own utensil. Do not use a utensil for one dish and then use it again for another.
- Wash hands after eating
Cross Contamination: http://www.allergysupportcentre.ca/cross-contamination.html
Kitchen Safety: http://foodallergycanada.ca/allergy-safety/at-home/
Seafood allergies: Health Canada
Examples of foods and products that contain or often contain seafood
- Combination foods, for example, fried rice, paella and spring rolls
- Garnishes, for example, antipasto, caponata (Sicilian relish)
- Gelatin, marshmallows
- Pizza toppings
- Salad dressings
- Sauces, for example, marinara, Nuoc Mâm, steak and Worcestershire
- Seafood soups and broths
- Spreads, for example, taramasalata
- Sushi (e.g. California rolls)
Other possible sources of seafood
- Deli meats, hot dogs (from gelatin)
- Dips, spreads
- Fried foods (from contaminated frying oil)