Contact Us

Use the form on the right to contact us.

You can edit the text in this area, and change where the contact form on the right submits to, by entering edit mode using the modes on the bottom right. 

110 S. 2nd Street
Geneva, IL, 60134


Interim Ministry

Interim Ministry


Our Interim Ministers:

Rev. Jennifer Innis
630-232-2350, ext. 103

Rev. Patrick Price
6330-232-2350, ext. 102

Interim Ministry Transition Team

The Transition Team works with the congregation and the interim ministers as a “think tank” and as a body for information and conversation about the interim experience. The Transition Team also assists with events such as the interim minister startup retreat and a day to review church history. The following people were selected to serve in this very important role; Deb Brod, Bill Scown, Kathleen McFadden, Melissa Auer, and Aaron Fogelman.

Six Priorities when Addressing Pending Transition

Introducing Your Interim Co-Ministers
May 27, 2018
The Interim Task Force is very excited to share that, as of last Friday, we have a completed agreement with our new interim minister! Actually, as you can see, it is with 2 ministers who happen to be married to each other. They are the Revs. Patrick Price and Jennifer Innis. They will begin their co-ministry with us here at UUSG on August 1st. 

They are coming to us from the Community UU Church in Plano, Texas, where Reverend Patrick has served as the Minister since 2006. Reverend Jennifer currently serves there as the Interim Director of Religious Education. They will celebrate their 15th wedding anniversary in June. They have two children—Nate (9) and Abby (6). We look forward to welcoming them to UUSG!

Are you thinking Jennifer looks familiar? Well, as a matter of fact, she spent a year with us in 2005-2006 as the Interim Associate Minister of Religious Education before moving to Texas.

Rev. Jennifer earned her Master’s in Divinity in 1998 from Harvard Divinity School. She was raised as a UU in Massachusetts and was very active in UU youth events as a teenager. She has particular expertise in religious education and has served since 2014 as the Assistant Director of Spirit Play - a UU religious education method and ministry. Prior to her ministry at the Community UU church, she served in consecutive roles as Consulting Minister for 3 years and Developmental Minister for 4 at the First Jefferson UU Church in Fort Worth. 

In describing her hopes for ministry, Rev. Jennifer writes, “More so than anything else, Patrick and I hope for a shared ministry, and not just between the two of us! We believe that all people, whether ordained or not, bring unique gifts and perspectives to congregational ministry. Just as our liberal religious tradition values the voice of the people when making decisions, it is the committed involvement and leadership of the congregation—the sharing of gifts and perspectives—that makes truly transformational ministry possible.”    

Rev. Patrick earned his Master’s in Divinity from Meadville/Lombard Theological School in 1995. He was raised in Ft. Worth as a fourth generation member of The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)—a denomination that emphasizes non-creedalism, lay empowerment, and congregational polity. Rev. Patrick’s theological journey has encompassed Contemporary Paganism, Humanism, and historical Jesus studies. He writes: “I understand Unitarian Universalism to be a pluralist faith learning to practice grounded openness.” 

Rev. Patrick is a Certified Shamanic Practitioner and a Certified Hypnotist (although we didn’t require that as part of the job!) In addition to his broad theological perspective, he has particular strengths in strategic planning, governance, and administration. 

You might be wondering what co-ministry is exactly and how it will work. It is an arrangement – not unknown to the UUA – where two ministers share the responsibilities and rewards of a single position. Some advantages of co-ministry include: 

  • Complementary strengths and opinions

  • Increased variety of sermon styles and topics

  • Combined experience, training, and skills of two people.

Per the advice of the UUA’s Transitions Office, one of the first steps upon the arrival of Rev. Jennifer and Rev. Patrick will be to schedule ample time with the Board for a deep conversation about how their ministry work will be shared. For example, who will be on point for worship, religious education, stewardship, etc? How will church members know whom to contact in different situations? Answers to these and other questions will be determined during the onboarding process in August and communicated to the congregation as soon as possible. 

Thank you all for your patience with the search process. What we want to emphasize is how excited we are about the promise of this special approach to shared ministry, given Rev. Jennifer and Rev. Patrick’s unique gifts and experience.

We know you will welcome them with open hearts!

Trish Beckjord, Brian Doyle, and Gail Tattersfield
The Interim Minister Task Force

Interim Minister Search Update
May 13, 2018

     Greetings, members and friends! It’s been a very busy two weeks for our task force. Here’s the latest information on our progress. On May 1, we entered Round 1 of the candidate interviewing and selection process. We received the names of seven candidates. We interviewed five and submitted the names of our ranked preferences on Wednesday, May 9. All day Thursday, we were glued to our email, waiting to hear back from UUA. We learned on Friday morning that we were not yet matched, which means we now move into Round 2. We’ll receive a new list of candidates on Monday, May 14, and will have an update for the congregation in about two weeks.
     While we were surprised not to be matched in Round 1, it’s important to emphasize that it’s not unusual and there are many possible reasons for a congregation to move into the second round. Ministerial candidates may choose other churches because of their size, location, or simply because the types of challenges offered by a given opportunity are a closer fit with a candidate’s near-term goals. According to our contacts in the UUA Transitions Office, the main challenge we faced in Round 1 is that our preferred candidates were also preferred by numerous other congregations.
     We’ve learned a lot through this process. Perhaps the most important take away is that we, UUSG, have a very compelling story to share—and important work to do. After the past two weeks, Gail, Trish, and I are more confident than ever about our future. Considering our 176-year history and a 40-year pastorate under the wise and steadfast hand of Rev. Lindsay, a two-week set back is more than manageable! 
     To understand why we feel so confident, we invite you to review our Information Packet for Interim Minister Candidates. It contains photos and descriptions of our people, programs, history, and more. If you have additional questions, please feel free to contact us at

Brian Doyle, Chair
UUSG Interim Minister Task Force

Interim Update: Interviews & Informational Packet - 5/7/18

Hello UUSG Members & Friends,

Although we haven't posted anything recently, the Interim Task Force has been working hard to prepare for online interviews with potential candidates. Per the UUA schedule, these Skype interviews have been happening this past week. 

As part of getting ready, we completed on-line information required by the UUA (hereand here) and our own, more detailed information packet to send to interested candidates. We thought you might be interested in seeing this material while we are interviewing and completing needed follow-up. Our thanks to the most recent search team for an Assistant Minister. You will see we used a lot of information you had prepared!

At the conclusion of the interviews, reference checks etc., the Interim Task Force will prepare a list of our candidate preferences in order: 1st, 2nd, etc., review it with the Board and submit it to the UUA. The interim candidates will prepare a similar list of their interviewed churches in order of preference and send to the UUA where the two lists will be matched. These lists are due this Wednesday, May 9th. We will know the results of the matching by early next week.

Please feel free to contact Brian, Gail, and Trish at If we don’t have the answers, we will work to find them for you.

Interim Minister Training and Certification - 3/7/18

The Interim Task Force was recently asked about possibly hiring a student from Meadville Lombard who was interested in following the development path to become an Interim Minister as an intern who could work with our UUSG Interim Minister. I need to clarify my answer a bit. If you’re interested in reading further, the information presented here can be found in the UUA’s Transitional Ministry Handbook

The reasons a congregation may want to hire an interim minister are many. In fact, the Transitional Ministry Handbook lists seven.  

One, for example, states: “…the congregation is at a challenging stage in its development. Whether due to deep differences, chronic conflict, serious financial problems, or an inability to agree on mission and vision, the congregation may need three to five years to get its house in order before it seeks to call a minister…”  

Another reads, “…a previous minister is departing . . . after serving the church for five years or more—long enough, if a senior or sole ministry, for a significant number of the congregation to identify the church with the departed minister…”

Each of these situations, and the others listed, requires a particular skill set in order for the Interim to be at their most effective in helping our congregation work through our interim period. Not only must they fulfill the traditional role of a minister, they must also successfully guide our congregation through the transition process. 

Based on the complexities of the various situations that can arise in the life of a congregation, the Unitarian Universalist Association’s Transitions Office has developed a specialized program for ministers who make interim work their calling. The Accredited Interim Minister (AIM) designation is given to ministers who complete this UUA training program in recognition of their further competence as a resident consultant who is able to assist congregations in transition. 

While a successful search may be defined as one that results in hiring an Accredited Interim Minister, we may in fact select one that is admitted to the program and currently involved in prescribed training. These ministers are referred to as Accredited Interim Ministers-in-Training (AIMITs).

The handbook tells us that the need for UU Interim Ministers is always greater than there are accredited ministers or ministers in training. Others that may submit packets in response to our search include new seminary graduates, transfers into UU ministry from other denominations, returnees to the parish from other work, recent retirees seeking only temporary posts, and ministers who think a year's temporary position is preferable to staying in place. Any of these latter candidates also go through a brief training period.

Regardless of the candidate packets that we receive expressing interest in our church, the Interim Ministry Task Force will be looking for an interim minister who can demonstrate the skills needed to help our congregation: 

  • Claim and honor our past, and engage and honor our griefs and conflicts

  • Recognize our unique identity, strengths, needs, and challenges

  • If needed, clarify appropriate leadership roles of our minister(s), church staff, and lay leaders

  • Navigate shifts in leadership that may occur in the next two years

  • Make appropriate use of regional, UUA, and other outside resources

  • Proudly come into possession of a renewed vision and strong stewardship of our church, prepared for new growth and new professional leadership, and looking forward to our future with excitement and anticipation

This information will be posted to our UUSG Interim Minister Webpage. Please check here to review this and past information. If you’re interested in learning more about interim ministry, check out the UUA website page

Please feel free to contact Brian, Gail, and Trish at If we don’t have the answers, we will work to find them for you.

Teams That Will Be Involved With Our Interim Process Over the Next Two Years - 2/25/18

There are four teams you should know about as we move towards Lindsay's retirement and beyond. Each group plays a part in moving UUSG through the interim minister period and into finding our settled minister.

INTERIM MINISTER TASK FORCE – Currently Active. The Interim Minister Task Force is a short-term three member team confirmed by the Board who are working to find our interim minister. Responsibility is to prepare the information packet to submit to the UUA, coordinate with the Personnel and Finance committees to prepare the contract and financial offer, interview candidates, and make a recommendation to the Board. This work is complete once the interim minister has been confirmed. Members: Brian Doyle (lead), Trish Beckjord and Gail Tattersfield.

TRANSITION TEAM - Not Identified or Currently Active. A five to seven member Transition Team will be appointed to work with the Interim Minister during the 2 year transition period. This group will not be identified until the Interim Minister is selected as we expect they may want to have input into this selection process. Preferably, members of this team are widely known and respected and well acquainted with the congregation’s history. Their role is to provide the Interim Minister with insight, organizational and facilitative talent, and willing hands as the interim ministry proceeds. These folks serve as a sort of “think tank” and helping hand for the interim minister, providing insight, organizational and facilitative talent, and willing hands as the ministry proceeds. They may help facilitate congregational workshops during visioning exercises, communicate information to the congregation, and receive questions and feedback.

MINISTERIAL SEARCH COMMITTEE - Not Identified or Currently Active. During our interim period and in accordance with the church bylaws, our Board will work with the congregation to identify members to serve on the Ministerial Search Committee. This group will be responsible for coordinating information with the Transition team and choosing the called minister to be approved by our congregation.

WORSHIP PLANNING TEAM – Currently Active. This team has been identified by Lindsay and is in place. It includes church members who are currently involved in planning our worship services and several other members of the congregation. The team’s first priority is to plan the summer worship services from the time to Lindsay’s departure to the time of the start of the Interim Minister. They will coordinate service themes, readings and music, providing cohesion in our Sunday services. This team will continue that work with the interim minister in planning the coming years worship calendar and preparing budget requirements. This type of worship team support is often in place in UU congregations and will likely continue even once a called minister is in place. Members - Geoff Pynn (team lead), Aaron Fogleman, Deb Brod, Rhonda Robinson, Cynthia Spiegel and ex officio members Tracy Dullea and Jeff Stibal.

This information will be posted to our UUSG Interim Minister Webpage. Please check here to review this and past information. If you’re interested in learning more about interim ministry, check out the UUA website page. Please feel free to contact Brian, Gail, and Trish at If we don’t have the answers, we will work to find them for you.

If you are not on the UUSG email list to receive the monthly Pioneer, please sign up here to see future postings about UUSG's Interim Ministry.

Brian, Gail, Trish
Interim Minister Task Force

Introducing the Interim Ministry Search Process - 2/18/18

Trish Beckjord, Brian Doyle, and Gail Tattersfield
UUSG Interim Minister Task Force

In September, the UUSG Board announced its intent to engage in a two-year period of interim ministry following Lindsey’s retirement this coming June. The purpose of interim ministry is to help the congregation prepare for change. Especially following a long settled ministry, it is essential that we have a period of time to decide together how we will continue doing the work of the church in the future.

In November, the Board appointed a very lean (but not mean!) Interim Minister Task Force charged to manage those tasks necessary to recruit a highly qualified interim minister. The task force members are Brian Doyle (Chair), Gail Tattersfield, and Trish Beckjord. Based on a process established by the UUA, our work includes:

  • Preparing and submitting an application and related materials to the UUA Transitions Office to be provided to prospective candidates;

  • Assisting in the preparation of a draft contract;

  • Conducting phone screenings and face-to-face interviews with candidates;

  • Recommending a preferred candidate to the Board;

  • Assisting the interim minister with relocation and, last but not least;

  • Communicating progress on this work to members of the congregation.

The timeline for this work is quite short. A schedule which lays out the details is attached. We are currently working on assembling our application package and coordinating with the Finance and Personnel Committees on the draft contract and our financial offer.

Applications from requesting churches are due to the UUA Transitions Office in mid-April. The interviewing process will take place in May and be complete by early June at the latest. The anticipated start date of our interim minister would be August or September. We expect to hire them for one year with an option to continue for the second year.  

Upon the arrival of our interim minister, the real work of interim ministry will begin and will entail many opportunities for all members of the congregation to be involved in the process of claiming and honoring our history, discovering a new identity, and committing ourselves to new directions in ministry. In the meantime, if you’re interested in learning more about interim ministry, check out the UUA website page; there is much good information on this site.  

As we move forward we will use the variety of communication tools we have available to communicate with the congregation: The Pioneer, Mini-Pioneer, weekly email blast, and special emails like this one, and intend send you regular updates. Our postings will also include answers to any questions we receive from the congregation so everyone has all the information that is communicated.  Also feel free to contact Brian, Gail, and Trish at If we don’t have the answers, we will work to find them for you.  

Christine has created an Interim Minister Search page on our web site. All information sent to the congregation will be posted there so it will continue to be available to you for reference.  Thank you for your support as our congregation begins our journey together!

The Interim Ministry Task Force


Interim Selection Process Schedule

The UUA-published spring 2018 dates for an August 2018 start of an Interim Minister are:

January – mid-April Interim Minister Task Force tasks

  • Prepare UUSG Informational packet per UUA guidelines to include: several recent orders of service, several current newsletters, the annual report, budgets for the current and preceding years, the bylaws, a church directory, any current short- or long-range plan, the departing minister's resignation announcement, the proposed interim contract, the names of UUA regional or other UUA staff members familiar with the congregation as references, and information on the locale

  • Prepare compensation recommendation for Finance Committee/Board Review (also per UUA guidelines)

  • Prepare proposed contract recommendation for HR Committee/Board Review

  • Prepare draft Interim application for Board Review

                Submit interim application to UUA: 4/17/2018

April 17 - 30      Interim applications due to UUA from searching congregations and candidate ministers, ministers review submitted church packets and choose congregations of interest

Selection Round 1

  • April 30 or May 1 – congregations receive names and Ministerial Records of interested ministers. Ministerial packets will include: sermon texts, sample newsletter articles, perhaps a reflection on the role of the interim minister, the names of leaders of current and former congregations as references, and a photo that may be used for publicity purposes if agreement is reached

  • May 11, noon Eastern time – congregations in round 1 may make an offer

  • Offers should not be made or accepted before 12 noon ET on Friday two weeks after the Ministerial Records are released to congregations

Selection Round 2

  • May 14 or 15 – congregations without a match from round 1 receive names of interested ministers

  • May 25, noon Eastern time – congregations in round 2 may make an offer

Selection Round 3

  • May 30 – congregations still without a match receive names of interested ministers

  • Offers may be made at any time