updated 8/1/2021

We are happy to announce we have hired our Transitional Minister who will be with us for two years while we search for our settled minister.

Rev. Craig Schwalenberg

Rev. Craig Schwalenberg was hired to serve as UUCV’s Interim Minister starting August 1, 2021. His time as our Interim Minister will end July 31st, 2023. During these two years, Rev. Craig will be working with the members of UUCV to deal with the many transitions the congregation is in the midst of experiencing. Together, we will honor what was, grieve our losses and changes, reconnect to one another and our wider Unitarian Universalist Association, experiment with new ways of doing things, discover what we wish to be, and prepare for our next called minister. Rev. Craig lives in Oneonta, NY with his partner of 26 years, Cheryl DeDecker. During his time with UUCV, Rev. Craig will be commuting weekly between Oneonta and his new apartment in Mechanicsburg. Rev. Craig is joined in this new adventure with UUCV by his dog, Spirit. Spirit is 9-10 year-old rescue dog (probably a Black Lab / Border Collie) who is a trained, certified therapy dog. Spirit will be joining Rev. Craig at UUCV most of the time.

Rev. Craig is a graduate from the University of Wisconsin – Madison with a degree in Psychology. It was there that he met and married Cheryl and where he discovered Unitarian Universalism. He studied for the ministry at the Meadville Lombard School in Chicago, one of our two Unitarian Universalist seminaries. He has served as Student Minister with Lake Country UU Church in Hartland, WI; as Assistant Minister with the First Unitarian Society of Milwaukee, WI; and as Minister with the UU Society of Oneonta, NY. He spent last year as the Interim Minister with the UU Congregation in Stamford, CT (though that was a remote ministry due to the pandemic.)

Rev. Craig describes his theology as one of connections and stories. We are all connected! We are all creators, collections, collectors, and tellers of stories. He is looking forward to connecting with the community of UUCV and learning and becoming a part of their great story. Rev. Craig is also a Games Minister. He is a professional game master and is a recognized consultant on the use of games in ministry. He loves to play card games, board games, and role-playing games. He is also a geocacher and enjoys playing disc golf. Rev. Craig is a fan of super heroes in all forms. He considers the Jester and Divine Fool to be one of his guiding spirits. He is also a collector of hats and a complete root beer snob.

Most weeks Rev. Craig will be in the area and available Sat night through Wed night.

He is always available by phone or text.

Reach out to Rev. Craig at Minister@uucv.net

updated 5/1/2021

Transitional Minister Search Update

The position application was submitted in early April and our transitional minister position is posted on the UUA job board. Ministers have until May 1st to submit their interest in the position.

The interview process is organized into two rounds. If the task force does not select a minister in the first round, we will continue the search in round two.

In the first round of interviews, the candidate applications will be released to the task force in early May, and the team will review the candidate applications and conduct the necessary background checks. The most qualified candidates will be scheduled for interviews.

The final decision for each candidate is due to the UUA Transitions office by mid-May to complete the first round. If we find a match, an offer will be made by the task force. If no offer is made in the first round, the task force will continue to round two. The round two timeline extends into mid-June.

With any luck, the next update will include the introduction of our Transitional Minister to the congregation.

As a reminder, this position will be for a term of two years beginning in August. The members of the transitional search task force and are your best points of contact for questions about the search.

     ● Gail Black
     ● Amy Farrell
     ● Cindy Good
     ● Kristen Wycha

Updates will be provided as we progress through the search process. For questions about the transitional minister search, please email to Kristen Wycha at kwycha@gmail.com.

Posted 4/15/2021

The board has been doing the necessary work to find and hire a transitional minister. The transitional minister will help support the congregation while we work to hire a settled minister.  The transitional minister will be hired for a term of 2-years beginning in August.  While this may seem like a long time, the 2-year term allows for the time needed to complete the search for the settled minister.

To manage the work of the transitional search process, a task force was created from members of the board.  The members of the transitional search task force are your best points of contact for questions about the search.  

  • Gail Black
  • Amy Farrell
  • Cindy Good
  • Kristen Wycha 

Following the UUA’s very well-defined process to help guide us in the search we have:

  • Built the application – assembled information for potential candidates about our past, present, and our future hopes and plans so that they might get a sense of who we are and whether or not they would like to know more about us and perhaps serve as our Interim Minister.
  • Posted the UUCV position on the UUA Ministerial Search Site jobs board in early April in preparation for interviews in early May
  • Updated our website to provide a more accurate sense of who we are for potential candidates who may be interested in learning about us.

On May 3rd the UUA will release a list of Interim Minister candidates to the task force.

From May 4th – May 17th the task force will review applicant packets and interview selected candidates.

On May 17th the task force will submit a list of their preferences to the UUA Transition Office which will assist in matching candidates with congregations.

ON May 19th (at noon!) Interim Search Task Force can extend an offer to selected Interim Minister. The offer may only be made at noon eastern time on May 19th.

If the offer is made and accepted then the search is over! If not, another round of names will be suggested and the process will repeat

For questions about the transitional minister search, please email to Kristen Wycha at kwycha@gmail.com.