Rev. Karen Armina’s message for this month…

  • Musings on Sabbatical and Widening Our Horizons

    Dear Ones,

    From January 1 until May 1, I’ll be away on sabbatical leave.  I’m so pleased and excited that our time together has been long enough that it’s time for me to take a second sabbatical!  Our shared ministry is the longest one you’ve gotten to experience, and I’m proud of how we’ve grown together this past decade.  I returned from my last sabbatical in the midst of a global pandemic, and we’ve spent the four years since then learning how to rebuild community in this new normal.  We’ve navigated many challenges in our work to build momentum back up since then, and I think it’s accurate to say that, while there are still areas that could use some more energy, we’re living into our mission with intention and vigor!

    I know we’ll continue to learn and grow during our time apart.  I’ll be in Madison during some of my sabbatical, learning again to relax into the rhythms of my body and spirit.  I’ll spend time with my teenager, who’s leaving for college (!) in August, and in nature, where I find solace.  And I’ll travel a bit too, to learn about the place my teen will spend the next four years, to spend time with loved ones, and to discover how some other UU congregations are recreating their ministries and momentum.  You’ll continue to welcome new people of all ages, all genders, all abilities, all backgrounds, and change with every person who arrives in your midst.  You’ll keep serving our community, radiating your love and compassion and activism out, and you’ll find new ways to do this as well.  You’ll keep worshiping, singing, praying, celebrating your accomplishments and joys, and accompanying each other through your sorrows and fears.  And through it all, you’ll widen your horizons, pay attention to new thoughts and ideas, and deepen your ministry.

    I’m grateful for all of you, for your big hearts and your care for each other and our world, for this community that is so grounded in love and justice, and for your understanding of how vital it is to offer your minister time to disconnect and reflect.  I’m excited to have a great lineup of guest and lay preachers to offer you while I’m gone, and grateful for the staff and leadership of our congregation, who will carry various new responsibilities while I’m gone.  I’m looking forward to hearing what you discover about yourselves in my absence, and your dreams about we’ll do next, when I return.  And even though I won’t be here, I’ll be thinking of you all with love and care.  Blessings!

    In faith and love, Karen

    [December 27, 2023]

    Read more here about how the congregation will operate while Rev. Karen is away.