Welcoming Taryn Strauss as Acting Senior Minister
Dear UUCA Members and Friends,
Your UUCA Board of Trustees is happy to announce that we have hired Taryn Strauss, current Associate Minister, as our Acting Senior Minister beginning July 1, 2019. We note and celebrate this history-making moment for UUCA, as we welcome our first female-identifying senior minister. Although Taryn has been with us for awhile now, we want to share information about her that helped convince your Board she was the right Acting Senior Minister for us at this time.
In August 2017 Taryn chose to continue her ministerial career and complete a second internship at UUCA. Immediately upon her arrival, her leadership, knowledge, and discernment were gifts to our congregation. Her track record of success as a Director of Religious Education has reinvigorated our beloved Youth and Children’s Religious Education program- an essential component to growing our community. Many of us have been personally enriched by joining Small Group Ministry, a project Taryn launched with the SGM team, bringing our congregation closer at an important time in our journey. And we have all witnessed Taryn’s sermons move us to tears and bring us a sustaining joy as we work through challenges in our personal lives, our congregation and our world.
Taryn is not a stranger to working with large congregations that are experiencing deep change. She served as the Director of Religious Education at All Souls NYC in the period following the death of their 30-year minister Rev. Forrest Church. Taryn provided healing leadership during a time of multiple ministry transitions and widespread culture change for a flagship UU congregation, all while revitalizing their RE program, eventually growing to over 200 children and youth. Taryn interned at the innovative, social justice leader Middle Collegiate Church in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, helping to launch their Sunday evening Art and Soul worship geared towards artists, performers, and young adults across the city. She offered healing ministry to her home congregation at Tennessee Valley UU Church in the weeks following a mass shooting in their sanctuary in 2008. Taryn’s gifts of collaborative creativity, clarity of UU identity, and track record of growing programs will serve us well at UUCA.
Now is the time for all of us to continue to rise to the challenges that we have before us and lift up the people who know and love our UUCA community. Taryn’s talent, experience, and relationship with members of this beloved community gives us great confidence that we will accomplish beautiful things together. With Taryn in the pulpit, we will continue to be inspired by sermons that clarify a healing vision for our community and our world. We will continue to strengthen our Religious Education program by hiring a Director of Religious Education, and we hope to support our growing community with a new Membership Coordinator.
Please join us in welcoming Taryn into this new role on June 30, 2019 when she will preach her first sermon as Acting Senior Minister.
Together in service,
Carol Ann Arvan, President
UUCA Board of Trustees