We have a Candidate Minister for Candidating Week - Rev. Laura Smidzik

Rev. Laura Smidzik

Your Search Committee is pleased to announce that Rev. Laura Smidzik has accepted our invitation to be the candidate for our full-time, settled minister.  Rev. Laura had not planned on being in search this year.  She cites feeling, “an unexpected call” to serve MSUS as a result of her recent involvement in D’Ann Prior’s and Christine Spiritwolf’s memorial services.

The members of the Search Committee believe Rev. Laura is a great fit for us!  Her worship services are thoughtful, engaging, and inspiring.  She is intentional about building community.  Pastoral care is one of Rev. Laura’s gifts.  She is also committed to serving families with children.  Rev. Laura has strong administrative, volunteer management and supervision skills.  She understands how to work with lay leaders.  She is also a successful grant writer and “loves fundraising.” Rev. Laura is deeply engaged in, and is well respected for, her social justice and anti-racism/anti-oppression work. 

Rev. Laura is a graduate of Beloit College, has an M.A. in Educational Policy from the University of Minnesota, and received her M.Div. from United Theological Seminary. Rev. Laura served her parish internship at First Universalist Church, Minneapolis, and her chaplaincy at Abbott Northwestern Hospital.  Rev. Laura has been the Minister of Membership at White Bear Lake UU since July, 2014.  Rev. Laura lives in St. Paul with her wife, Linda Smidzik, and their 17 year old son, Corbin.  They also have a 19 year old son, Quintin, who is a sophomore at Iowa State University. 

We hope you can attend an event or two during the week of April 17 – 24, and are able to hear  Rev. Laura preach April 17 and 24!  April 17 the topic will be “the Question of Calling,” where Rev. Laura will explore the concept of “call” in our lives and in our UU movement.  The topic April 24 will be “Hopes and Prayers,” where Rev. Laura will reflect on what she has heard during candidating week regarding her hopes and prayers for our future.

Candidate Week Schedule

April 16-24, 2016

All meetings are at MSUS, unless otherwise noted.

Saturday, April 16th
Dinner with the Board, Search Committee Co-Chairs, and spouses:  5:00 pm

Sunday April 17th
CANDIDATE SPEAKS AT THE 9:00 and 10:30 SERVICE
Meet and greet band before 9:00 am service
Meet and greet childcare workers before 10:30 service              
Congregational Ice Cream Social after service
Meeting with top donors 4:00Dinner with Finance Committee Chair (offsite)

Monday, April 18th
Brunch with current Board Chair and potential future Board Chair:  10:00 am
Meet with Personnel Committee:, 2:00 pm
Meet with Lands and Facilities Committee:  7:30 pm – 9:30 pm

Tuesday, April 19th
Meet with Music Director:  10:00 am
Meet and Greet String Band:  7:15Social Action Committee Meeting:  7:30 pm – 9:30 pm

Wednesday April 20th
Meet with Administrator/Bookkeeper:  11:00 am
Staff Luncheon:  12:30 pm
Drop in on choir rehearsal

Thursday April 21st
Founders Luncheon (offsite)
Membership Committee meeting and Hospitality:  7:30 pm – 9:30 pm

Friday April 22nd
Meet with Religious Education Director:  10:30 am
Drop in meet and greet:  4:00 pm – 6:00 pm              

Saturday, April 23rd
Meet with Religious Education Committee:  10:00 am
Meet with Mom’s Group representatives:  Right after Religious Education Committee Meeting
Meet with Worship Committee:  1:00
Meet with Music Committee:  3:00

Sunday, April 24th
CANDIDATE SPEAKS AT THE 9:00 and 10:30 SERVICE
Meet with Coming of Age youth at 10:00
CONGREGATIONAL MEETING: 12:00