A Message from Pippin Whitaker

Special Greetings for The Accotink UU Church Community:

I am overjoyed to be your candidate for settled ministry! It has been an absolute pleasure to work with your excellent search committee to delve into the richness of your community. Through conversations and studying your history, policies, hopes, and more, I feel I have come to know much about you in the past few weeks. I offer deepest gratitude to each search committee member for the time and careful attention to their important charge. Thank you Natasha Barnes, Jenn Carlson, Diane Clayton, Jan Forsyth, Jim Girard (committee Chair), Ed Kringer, and Nancy Melito—What a wonderful team!

There are so many beautiful aspects of the AUUC community that I am thrilled to engage with and to know more deeply. One of the qualities I find especially inspiring is how you deeply live out our UU values. Discovering your commitment and excellent level of participation in social justice work, from meal packing to VOICE and more, is truly inspiring. But not only this, when you explore social justice issues you also examine yourselves and how you can live into your new learning more fully. Such transformative practice is what the world needs as we seek to embrace a challenging yet hope filled future. Being a caring community is also part of living our values. Your strong pastoral care support, friendly community, and care for those who have passed exemplified in your memorial garden all speak volumes for how you value each other and affirm one another’s worth and dignity. 

Your deep integrity of purpose and commitment to ongoing growth in how you practice our faith is woven throughout your congregation, and it resonates deeply with my call to ministry. Put simply, I believe we build the beloved community by embodying it, and by weaving and tending relationships of creativity and accountability. I am so excited to begin to explore our ministry together during candidating week! 

I come to you with a deep background in transformational community change to promote healthy relationships and for violence prevention. I have been a social work professor researching and teaching college classes on topics from social change to advanced statistics. I have helped community organizations listen better to marginalized groups they seek to support. I have engaged in community organizing and research to combat human trafficking. I am also an amateur (meaning I do it because I love it!) pianist. 

With these experiences and perspectives, I entered formal training to become a UU minister in 2014. My husband Steve and three children (who are 11, 8, and 6 years old) are on this journey with me and continue to be enthusiastic supporters. They are also eagerly looking forward to meeting you! 

Until we meet in person! 

Blessings,

Pippin

 

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