The health and vitality of our congregations depends in part on a good fit between a congregation and their minister. The Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) helps to connect ministers searching for a position with congregations which want to find a minister.
The UUA offers information and resources to help congregants, ministers, regional transition coaches, compensation consultants, and regional staff throughout the search process for all types of ministers: assistant, contract, developmental, interim, or settled.
Congregations seeking ¾ or full time ministries receive support from both the UUA Transitions Office and UUA regional staff; congregations seeking ministries of less than ¾ time receive support primarily from regional staff.
For questions about the materials or the search process, please contact the UUA Transitions Office at transitions [at] uua [dot] org.
Congregational Leaders and Ministers
Regarding all active and upcoming searches:
- Only use the old settlement system for accessing historical information. The new MinistrySearch system is in use!
- Congregational leaders, send an email to transitions [at] uua [dot] org to initiate your search. Include your congregation’s full name, city, and state, and the name and email for your contact person. If you are initiating an interim ministry search, let us know if it will be full-time or a lower percentage of time and about the planned duration (two years is recommended).
These documents are essential reading for both lay leaders and for ministers.
- The Settlement Handbook (PDF, 82 pages) The comprehensive guide to the process to call a minister for both congregations and ministers.
- Transitional Ministry Handbook (PDF, 45 pages) (Word) The comprehensive guide for all transitional ministries. Includes sample contracts for both interim and consulting ministries.
- Congregations' Search Calendar A timeline of significant search milestones for August 2019 settlements
- The Hire-to-Call Process (PDF, 8 pages) Provides an outline for the process of hiring a second (or third, etc.) minister with the intent to call in the future. By Rev. Dr. Ian Evison.
- 2012 Joint Recommendations Concerning Ministerial Agreements (Word, 24 pages) (PDF, 21 pages) Background information for all ministerial agreements and sample letters of call for settled ministries.
- 2019 Draft Ministerial Agreement (PDF) (Congregational Boards, Ministerial Search Committees, and Ministers are invited to submit comments on the text of the new draft ministerial agreement.)
- 2019 Draft Ministerial Agreement Cover Letter (PDF)
- Benefit Transition/Coverage Continuation Form Courtesy of the Office of Church Staff Finances.
- Year by Year in Settlement (PDF). Graphs and explanations for recent settlement trends.
Resources here are of particular use to lay leaders shepherding their congregation through the ministerial transition.
- Notice of Ministerial Transition
Informs the Transitions Office and your Regional Transitions Program Manager that your congregation is going into ministerial search.
- Ministerial Search Committee Calendar (PDF) (XLS) (Revised July 2017)
- The Resource Guide for Ministerial Search Committees
An essential supplement to The Settlement Handbook for congregations.
- Compensation Calculator (Excel) (PDF)
Assists in calculating the UUA-recommended cost of ministry for any ministerial position.
- Responsible Staffing (PDF, 14 pages)
- Guide to and rationale behind the process of screening ministers. Also see President's Letter (PDF) and Responsible Staffing Forms (PDF). Companies that conduct criminal background checks:
- Guidelines for Part-time Ministry Searches (PDF)
A brief description of what the Transitions Office can offer to congregations seeking ministers for part-time (less than 3/4 time) positions.
- Watch The Interim Opportunity. Essential viewing for congregations at the beginning of their ministerial transition period.
These resources are useful for ministers in the midst of or considering a transition.
- Opportunities for Ministry
An up-to-the-minute list of all congregations publicly in transitions.
- How to Case a Church (PDF, 59 pages)
(Finding & Getting the Church of Your Choice)
The classic (3rd edition) by Peter Spilman Raible.
- Ministerial Settlement System Please access this retired system only to retrieve historical information. New searches and records should go in the MinistrySearch system.
- How to Go Online (Settlement System) Please access this retired system only to retrieve historical information. New searches and records should go in the MinistrySearch system.
- Information for Regional Transitions Coaches (RTCs)