When I’ve checked in with people lately, a new common response has been “I don’t know how I feel.” It’s a reflection of the serious uncertainty, confusion, and real paradox of life in the US in 2020. It can be exhausting! Even as plans have been changed or postponed, I hope you are finding in this summer time some moments of real renewal, and where you can honor the challenges of simply being in the world right now. Moments of joy, and gratitude!
And actually I have some joyful news to share with you. We are so excited to announce that Tanner Linden will be joining our staff team as a part time Digital Marketing Manager beginning July 12th. Tanner is a lifelong UU, raised in the church in Ventura California – and a dedicated leader for Unitarian Universalism in both paid and volunteer capacities. You can learn more about him at his website tannerlinden.com.
We got to know Tanner initially because we needed to find someone to run our (now all-virtual) Sunday services. All services since moving online have been run out of Rev. Sean’s home with the huge technical support of his husband, Charles – which is definitely not sustainable.
We also hoped for some insight and advice about how to improve our digital presence for the coming year while we are all online. We didn’t want to just take what we have always done in person and replicate it online. We want to really use this time to grow our reach and our impact.
Tanner came highly recommended by the Church of the Larger Fellowship, the largest UU congregation in the world (that has always been all-virtual), where he has been working as their Communications Coordinator for the past few years.
We asked Tanner to provide us an audit of our current systems and materials and to make recommendations for how to improve those systems. In receiving that report, it was clear that he could provide us a degree of expertise and skills – all grounded in a deep understanding of and passion for Unitarian Universalism – that we need as we think about both our short and long term future.
Tanner is especially passionate about finding ways to bring the Sunday service into the rest of the week and to growing Unitarian Universalism’s impact far beyond what we’re able to experience in just a few hours once a week. Obviously this is a really great fit for our congregation and the bold vision you have imagined!
Tanner’s work to begin will be in understanding our work and ministries, and also to provide that Sunday management so that Sean and Charles can have a few Sundays off! We will be re-tooling our communications systems based on his recommendations, and so we’ll let you know as this develops. For now, things will continue as is! We will set up some times for him to meet with folks over zoom (he’s going to stay in Ventura for now), so look for those invites.
One other fun piece of communications news to share – Anna sent The Communicator in for final proofing today – we think we’ll have it printed and ready to mail by the end of next week! For all who have been wondering, thanks for your patience – I’m excited to share it with all of you soon!
One thing I can say for sure is that this Sunday at 9 am we will have a service ready to offer you! We’re finishing up the “Loving Where You Live” series with another fabulous series of neighborhood tours and reflections on self-sufficiency, vulnerability and democracy.