A Message from Board of Trustees President,
“Goodbye always makes my throat hurt.” ~Charlie Brown
Hello Unity of Gainesville Members and Friends,
Over the past five years Unity of Gainesville has realized signitificant growth and prosperity with the leadership of Rev. Robin. Rev. Robin’s recently announced that her relationship with UGG would be complete at the end of this ministerial contract, September 30. The Board of Trustees and Robin are committed to holding the high watch for Unity of Gainesville during this transitional period. August 30 will be Robin’s last Sunday of service. During the next nine weeks Robin and the Board of Trustees will continue to work together with the intention to make this a smooth transition for Unity of Gainesville.
The current timeline: Tuesday, June 16, monthly board meeting, Robin shared with the board that she is not available for contract renewal; Saturday, June 20, a two-hour conversation with Robin and board member sharing our feelings about this decision. Tuesday, June 23, board conference via Zoom with Carrie Kenyon of Unity World Ministries Employment and Transitional Services discussing the next step for UGG. Tuesday, June 30, the board again gathers via Zoom to continue the conversation of how our ministry will look without our powerful and heartfelt leader, Rev. Robin. As we move forward in this process, updates will be provided to congregation via newsletter and/or Sunday services.
Robin, we love you! We appreciate you and your devotion exhibited by a plethora of hours of work with the UGG ministry. We behold the Christ in you and the next phase of your journey. Many blessings to you and Rick.
With any ideas, comments and/or questions please contact me at email@example.com with UGG Comments on subject line for email sender identification. My land line number is 770 536 7156. The board members beseech your prayers and support during this time.
"So, You Heard Your Minister Is Leaving”, a brief UWM video (link included in this newsletter) may be useful in explaining next steps.
Board of Trustees President
Two crosscurrents are at work: the old you leaving and grieving while the new you celebrates and grows strong. ~Julia Cameron, The Artist’s Way
A Letter from the Senior Minister
Dear Unity of Gainesville Members and Friends,
It was almost five years ago that I agreed to guide Unity of Gainesville for one year in its preparation to hire a full-time minister. Wow! One year turned into five! In that period of time, we have grown together in many ways.
In 2015, the tithe income was $58,106. In 2019, our tithe income was $102,876. Even with the effects of COVID19, we are on target for $90K in tithes in 2020. Although ministry is not about money, income received is a valid measurement of how successfully an organization is communicating its message and fulfilling its mission.
Over the course of these five years, Unity of Gainesville has grown in other ways as well. It is well staffed with Wanda Rutledge in the admin office, Helen Vaughn as Youth Director, and Patsi Yarborough as Creative Media Consultant. Sunday services have great musical accompaniment. The physical asset is well maintained. The debt load for the church has been substantially reduced due to the forgiveness of the second mortgage, which Unity of Gainesville paid on for 20 years.
It is no doubt that Unity of Gainesville is in a much better overall position today than it was in June of 2015.
Half way through this year, we have faced tremendous challenge together. Who knew we would say goodbye to our friend, Rev. Larry Church? The next week, we had to shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic. Creating virtual church and restarting in-person services have been an uphill climb, but we are doing it!
Over the course of these five years, I have had the privilege of serving with great folks in leadership. When I began my service, Bob Westervelt, Jere` McManon, Marla Tyler, Marion Stoneman, Stuart Safier, and Marlon Balkstra were board members. Over the years, other talented people have served in this important leadership role, including Lynn White, Joan Snow, Sheri Johnson, and Barbara Schaeffer.
It has been my privilege to serve with the current board made up of Kay Hambrick-Weeks, Lavonne Hoglund, Rick Gadbois, Josephine Sherwood, and Darlene Becker.
There will always be more to do. We will never get it all done. The mission and the ministry continues. It is time for Unity of Gainesville to have a change. My work here is complete. I have accomplished everything, and more, I intended to do when I first accepted this position. After much prayer and consideration, I have chosen to not request a contract renewal at this time. My last Sunday service will be August 30th.
Your Board of Trustees and Unity Worldwide Ministries are aware of my decision, and Member Services stands ready to assist in any way possible. Know that you are not in this alone as you identify and move toward what is best for Unity of Gainesville.
I will see you either in person or through our virtual services for the next ten weeks. If you are not yet comfortable coming to Sunday service, but would like to speak with me, I can meet with you individually. I will be available for congregant appointments on Sunday afternoons, Tuesday afternoons and Wednesday mornings through August. To schedule your private time, please contact me at 740-602-0772 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Know that Unity of Gainesville is near and dear to my heart. My prayers for the highest and best for this church and its leadership will continue for as long as I live.
With love and in service,
Rev. Robin Volker
Unity of Gainesville