Consulting Minister – Ashley Horan, M.Div.

My friends in Unitarian Universalism,

Greetings to you all! I look forward to beginning my ministry with you as the first Consulting Minister of Open Circle Unitarian Universalist Fellowship.  I am honored and excited to be serving this Beloved Community for the 2012-2013 church year, and I look forward to our journey together.

Because all true collaboration is based in relationship, I will share a bit about myself: I am a lifelong Unitarian Universalist, and I grew up in St. Paul, MN. Since my childhood I have lived, studied and worked in a swath of cities spanning the country along I-90/94: I received my B.A. in Francophone African Cultures from Harvard University in Cambridge, MA; spent a year teaching French in Seattle, WA, and then two years as a middle school Spanish teacher in Minneapolis, MN; received my Masters of Divinity from Meadville Lombard Theological School in Chicago, IL, last May; and recently completed two months serving as the Summer Minister to the First Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Ann Arbor, MI.  I have also served as the Religious Education Consultant to the First Unitarian Church of Hobart, IN; the Young Adult and Campus Ministry leader at the First Unitarian Society of Chicago; and the Intern and Campus Minister at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Davis, CA.  This year, in addition to my work with OCUUF, I will also be serving as quarter-time Consulting Minister to the Universalist Unitarian Church of Joliet, IL. 

I currently live in Chicago with my beloved partner, Rev. Karen Hutt, and our daughter, Elizabeth.  Karen is a chaplain and Clinical Pastoral Education Supervisor at South Suburban Hospital, and is the affiliated Community Minister at the Beverly Unitarian Church.  Elizabeth just began the 7th grade at the beginning of September.  I’m sure you’ll get to see them around from time to time!

In my conversations with the Board of Trustees, we have determined together that my quarter-time ministry with you will have three main points of focus: Worship, Religious Education, and Welcome and Outreach Ministries.  I will be attending key meetings and events, leading trainings, discussions, and planning sessions, and inviting you to share your perspectives as we move forward with our work. 

I am excited to hear your stories about OCUUF, about what Unitarian Universalism means to you, and about the people and experiences that give shape to your lives.  Please do reach out and introduce yourselves (and be patient if it takes me a while to learn your names!), and don’t hesitate to contact me with questions, concerns and ideas.  I am excited about our work and ministry together!

Blessings and gratitude,

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