Oliver LaGrone Scholarship
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Services & Directions
Sunday Service Hours
9:30 am @ Market Street
11:30 am @ Clover Lane
1280 Clover Lane
Harrisburg, PA 17113
1508 Market Street
Harrisburg, PA 17103
Office Hours @ Clover Lane
Tuesday, Thursday & Friday
8:30 am - 3:30 pm
*Staff Hours @ Clover Lane*
Rev. Lyn Cox
Director of Music
Thursday: 2 pm - 4 pm
Director of RE
Tuesday: 9:30 am - 3:30 pm
Thursday: 1:00 pm - 3:30 pm
Office Hours @ Market St
9:00 am - 12:30 pm
*Staff Hours @ Market Street*
Rev. Lyn Cox
Director of RE
Home > Ministerial Search Committee|
Ministerial Search Committee
The UUA has developed and actively supports a well-defined process for congregations, such as ours, seeking to call a settled minister. Since receiving the congregation’s approval in March of 2017, the 7 member ministerial search committee (MSC) has been laying the groundwork for a successful search. That groundwork began with meetings with our regional transitions coach, Rev. Bruce Marshall, and Rev. Mike Walker, to understand the search process and gather resources to assist our work. Next, a facilitated weekend retreat helped us to establish a positive group dynamic and identity. Finally, we began to meet every 1-2 weeks to actively engage in the planning and tasks that comprise the search process. Moving forward, we invite the members and friends of UCH to engage with us in this process; your participation is vital to the success of our search. In the weeks and months ahead, we will ask for your help in understanding who we are as a congregation, who we aspire to be as a faith community, and identifying the person, or people, to partner in ministry with us to realize our goals.
Ministerial Search Committee Members
Mary Lynn Fecile - Chair
Dorothy Brown - Secretary
Erica Lamber t- Treasurer
Margaret Carrow - Visit Arrangements
Kevin Geist - Website Coordinator (former referred to as Packet Coordinator)
Jim Handshaw - Reference Reviewer
Marjy Shubauer-Hartman - Survey Coordinator
UCH Ministerial Search Committee
From Left: Kevin Geist, Marjy Shubauer-Hartman, Mary Lynn Fecile, Margaret Carrow, Dorothy Brown, Erica Lambert and Jim Handshaw
Summary and Timeline for the 2017-18 Search
- Survey distributed and completed by members/friends/staff
- Cottage meetings scheduled after services at both campuses 9/17, 9/24, 10/1
- Search Committee conducts individual member/friend/staff interviews
- "Beyond Categorical Thinking" service presented at both campuses followed by a workshop at Clover Lane after coffee hour scheduled for October 15; this program is offered by the UUA Transitions Office to promote inclusive thinking and help prevent any unfair discrimination in our search/calling process
- Search Committee prepares Congregational Record to provide preliminary information about UCH to ministers in search
- Search Committee prepares online information “packet” (an in-depth look at UCH) for exchange with interested ministers
- Search Committee completes online Application for Minister
- Search Committee can request access to Ministerial Records from the UUA
- Search Committee can contact ministers who have expressed interest in UCH and will exchange “packets”
- Search Committee reviews packets and conducts interviews with candidates of interest
- Search Committee selects three or four “pre-candidates” out of list of potential candidates
- Pre-candidates will each be scheduled for “pre-candidating” weekends, which includes a tour of the town, area, and UCH facilities, interviews and meals together, and observing the pre-candidates preach at a neutral pulpit
- Search Committee makes offer to first choice for candidate contingent on background check and reference interviews
- Search Committee conducts background check and reference interviews
- Contract negotiation with UCH Board
- Candidating Week – the chosen candidate meets and interacts with as much of the congregation as possible and leads worship services on the Sundays beginning and ending the week. After the services on the second Sunday, the congregation holds a formal meeting to vote to call the new minister
UCH 2017-18 Search Committee Bio's
Looking for a community wedded not to doctrine but to principles, I joined the Unitarian Church in 2007. I have taken several classes and participated in talks and readings. I now organize the ushers at Market Street and am a lay liturgist.
A retired Database Administrator in the System DBA Branch of the Technology Services Department, I have been a very active member of the Unitarian Church of Harrisburg since the late 90s. I have been on the church’s Board of Trustees, including a year as treasurer. Additionally, I was a co-developer of the church’s first all-church social action project helping female ex-offenders and their families, and am still an active member of the steering committee. I am also on the board of the church’s state-wide advocacy group, UUPLAN, and co-chair of the Anti-Mass Incarceration subcommittee. I also am a new member of the Racial Justice lay ministry. A long-time member and chairperson of the Oliver LaGrone Scholarship Committee at UCH, I played a role in the scholarship’s growth from $1k to $2k. In my spare time, I love to travel.
Mary Lynn Fecile
I found the spiritual community I had long sought at the Unitarian Church of Harrisburg, signing the membership book, along with my husband Paul, in February 2011. For the past several years I have been active in the RE program as a nursery volunteer and classroom leader, serving on the RE steering committee, training and serving as an OWL leader, and helping draft the UCH safe congregations policy. I am also a member of the Oliver Collective and serve as the mentor to the 2016 Oliver LaGrone scholar. Coming to Unitarian Universalism from the restrictive hierarchy of the Catholic Church, Paul and I truly value the commitment to democratic processes articulated in the fourth UU principle and embodied at UCH. I would consider it a privilege to serve as a member of the ministerial search committee.
We came to UCH in 2000 because we were looking for a church home to raise our kids, and being a gay couple in the 1990s, well, our choices were few. I really didn’t have a good idea of what UUs were, and I would say it took me a year of attendance until I did. I did have a religious upbringing and early adult life. I didn’t think I would join a church again because I just didn’t think I would ever believe in any doctrine again, would never be sure of the supernatural and if I was sure of it, would probably be sure that it didn’t exist. So it took me a year to realize that in addition to its stance on gay issues, I already aligned with its view on what I thought religion should be focused on. As your candidate for the search committee, I will want to look at the surveys that were done for the prior search committee and see what valuable info this congregation has already given on the qualities they want in a minister. I will want to try to understand what you want that hasn’t been high on my list or crossed my mind.
I grew up in New Cumberland, graduating from Cedar Cliff High School in 1963. Following my childhood passion for airplanes and flying, I graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with an engineering degree in aerospace. Subsequently, I enjoyed a 34-year career with United Airlines as a pilot. Mimi and I raised our two daughters in New Jersey where she was very active in a local Presbyterian Church and I occasionally attended a UU Church in Princeton. We moved back to New Cumberland in 1988 and both attended the Camp Hill Presbyterian Church. We joined Harrisburg UU about ten years ago. Several years ago I joined the choir. This significantly invigorated my spiritual journey and appreciation of this congregation. It is an honor to be asked to serve on the ministerial search committee.
I am an elementary music teacher in the Palmyra Area School District. After growing up in a United Methodist church, I was in search of a faith community more in line with my beliefs. UCH became that home, and I joined about 10 years ago with my husband, Clay. We have two boys who participate in the RE program. I have been involved in several UCH activities, including Common Ground Cafe, Adult RGL Committee, UCH orchestra/marching band, Silent Witnesses, Lay Liturgist, nursery volunteer, and I am currently serving as Secretary of the Religious Exploration Committee. I am excited for the opportunity to participate in the Search Committee and am fully committed to helping UCH call our next minister who will best serve the needs of our diverse congregation.
Membership in UCH has been a blessing in my life for many years. Singing with UNISINGERS and now the UCH Choir, playing the violin with Jim Handshaw on cello, and chanting along with Libby while ringing the bells or banging the drums all brighten my life. I’ve enjoyed yoga, mindfulness meditation and auctions at Clover Lane as well as Common Ground Community Breakfasts and Getting Ahead at Market Street. Both campuses contribute to the richness that is the Unitarian Church of Harrisburg. My tribe is here, my hope is here and my refuge is here. I’d like to repay UCH with serving on the search committee as a small way of saying THANK YOU to this community by helping to find our next settled minister.