Start Ups

Regional staff offer three types of staff "Start Up" workshops. Details about each can be found in the text below, but the list includes:

  • for ministers settled in a new congregation
  • for newly hired DREs, and
  • for congregational staff groups who are welcoming a new staff person. For information about currently scheduled congregational staff team start ups, click here.

Ministerial Startups
Ministerial startups are typically offered in the first two months of a new minister's settlement. These workshops are typically three to four hours long and generally involve an array of lay leaders and congregants, including past and present members of the Board, Committee on Ministry, search committee, and many others. 

The goals of ministerial startup workshops are to:

  • Help surface patterns in the congregation’s relationship with ministers, and the resultant expectations of new ministry
  • Explore dimensions and challenges of shared ministry
  • Articulate structures and boundaries necessary for effective ministry
  • Identify the best ways for the new minister’s strengths to shine forth

The workshop uses a combination of group exercises and discussion to explore the history of ministry in the congregation and asks participants to identify patterns in the relationships between ministers and the congregation. The workshop facilitator will invite participants to brainstorm important priorities for the first year in the new ministry and to explore areas in which shared ministry between the congregation and its new minister needs clarification and focus. It concludes with the minister offering concrete information about the logistics of his or her work (office hours, Sundays off, staff supervision, etc.), and what aspects of congregational ministry most excite and challenge them.

DRE Startups
Text under construction.

Staff Startups
Each fall (usually in September or October) MBD offers a half-day event for new congregational staff teams to work on developing healthy and productive work relationships. This workshop offers suggestions on how to build a team culture, how to understand the mission of your work as a staff team, and how to negotiate relationships with lay leaders, among other topics. For information about currently scheduled congregational staff team start ups, click here.


To schedule a start up for your congregational staff or leaders, contact:
Sue Phillips, Regional Lead
sphillips [at] uua [dot] org