Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship (WA) has called the Rev. Paul Beckel to settled ministry; Rev. Beckel began serving the congregation in August, 2014. He and his spouse, having just become empty nesters, are looking forward to the endless hiking/biking opportunities in the Pacific Northwest.
Rev. Beckel previously served 13 years as minister of the First Universalist Unitarian Church of Wausau (WI), and prior to that served five years at Southwest UU Church in suburban Cleveland, OH. He received his MDiv in 1996 from Meadville Lombard Theological School and was ordained in the same year. He earned a BA in Philosophy in 1986 at Katholieke Universiteit Leuven in Belgium.
Rev. Dr. Linda Hart began serving the Tahoma UU Congregation (Tacoma, WA) in mid-August. She has been contracted by TUUC as a Developmental Minister for the next few years as the congregation investigates its history and future. This form of transitional ministry is eligible for call to settlement after a minimum of 2-3 years if both minister and congregation discern this would be the right course.
Rev. Dr. Hart is a lifelong UU and was ordained in 1984. She has served congregations ranging in size from 30 to 400 as consulting, interim and settled minister in Vermont, Connecticut, and London, England, as well as in Washington State (Spokane, Rainier Valley, Lacey in addition to a two-year Interim Ministry just completed in Marysville). Linda began her ministry work with a community based outreach ministry in Chicago, working with homeless teens. She currently lives with her family in Olympia, WA, where she is a member of the Olympia UU Congregation.
The UU Fellowship of Central Oregon (Bend) has chosen the Rev. Antonia Won as Developmental Minister to serve through the completion of their first building and the transition to a much larger church presence. Unfortunately, due to unforeseen delays with her visa, Rev. Won has been unable to take up residency in Bend as a Canadian citizen. She continues to serve the congregation temporarily from her home in Vancouver, B.C., while the process unfolds.
A third-generation UU, Rev. Won was ordained in 2011, following completion of her M.Div. from Vancouver School of Theology in 2003. She served for four years on the Congregational Development staff of the Canadian Unitarian Council, and was previously consulting minister for two congregations in Montana. She has been an avid attendee of Eliot Institute for many years, including serving on the board of this UU family camp in the northwest.
The Rev. Emily Melcher, Interim Minister, began serving the Olympia UU Congregation (WA) in August. Her transitional ministry will support the congregation through the process of search for a settled minister, anticipated to be in place by Fall, 2016. As Interim Minister, Rev. Melcher’s focus will be on the developmental work of the congregation as it prepares to welcome its next minister after a 13-year ministry with the Rev. Arthur Vaeni, who retired and was named Minister Emeritus last spring.
Rev. Melcher is a singer and songwriter with a specialist in the music of Swedish troubadour Evert Taube. She is familiar with the Pacific Northwest through her many visits to perform for Scandinavian-American organizations in the area, and to visit with family. She earned her M.Div. from Andover Newton Theological School, M.A from the University of Wisconsin and BA from UCLA. She was ordained in 2010, and has served two previous Interim Ministries, in Connecticut and in Vermont.
Rogue Valley UU Fellowship (Ashland, OR) has contracted the Rev. Nan White to serve as Developmental Minister. She began her service in August, following a 15-year ministry in Beaufort, SC, where she was founding minister and now Minister Emerita.
Rev. White received her M.Div. from McCormick Theological Seminary in 1991, as well as having earned a Masters of Religious Education from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in 1980. She was admitted to Fellowship as a UU Minister in 2005. In addition to her service at the UU Fellowship of Beaufort, she served for five years as Consulting Minister of the UU Congregation of the Lowcountry in Bluffton, SC.
A leader in civil rights and the LGBTQ movement, Rev. White has also been a member of the UUA’s General Assembly Planning Committee and has served a Ministerial Settlement Representative. Rev. White and her wife Sam have been together for 20 years and were legally married in Boston in 2009. They are ready for an adventure in the beautiful Rogue Valley!