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Minister's Parental Leave

Plan for Rev. Abbey’s Parental Leave 

Rev. Abbey Tennis is rapidly approaching the due date of Tennis-Lovell baby #1!  With the transition to being a family of three, Rev. Abbey will be on parental leave for twelve weeks beginning April 5th.  She will be back for a few days in June to connect with staff before taking vacation in July, and then return to the Congregation full-time on August 2, 2021.  During her leave, Rev. Hannah Capaldi will assume duties as Acting Lead Minister.  


What will this look like for the congregation?

As Acting Lead Minister, Rev. Hannah will assume Abbey’s usual preaching schedule and will be in the pulpit three times a month, supported by a few fabulous guest preachers.  She will also  supervise the rest of the staff, take the lead in supporting social justice ministries and the Board of trustees, and manage any emergencies, should they arise. With the collaboration of staff and lay leadership, we believe this will be a time of minimal disruption to our work of carrying out our mission of awakening love and justice in our lives and the world, and provide an opportunity for increased participation and leadership from you, our members and friends! 


What will committees and teams look like?

One place that will see some change is the presence of a minister at evening meetings.  Since Abbey and Hannah often have different meetings during the week, there will be reduced ability for ministerial presence at so many different committees and teams.  Below is what we’ve communicated to leaders about what to expect for Abbey’s leave:

  • Board, Committee on Shared Ministry, Membership, Finance Working Group, Small Group Ministry: Will retain same level of ministerial presence during Abbey’s leave

  • Caring Team: Will retain half-time presence of minister at weekly meetings, but full time pastoral care responsibilities. 

  • Worship Associates & Social Justice Groups: Will have ministerial presence for trainings/kick-offs and large events, but will be run more independently by lay leadership in Spring

  • Vespers Services: Will be led by seminarian and long term member, Lisa Schilansky for April, May, and June

  • Facilities & Board Working Groups, e.g. Accessibility Task Force, Friends of 2125: Will have ministerial presence on an as-needed basis

  • Stewardship: Our annual stewardship campaign will take place in the Fall of 2021, rather than the spring, as it did last year. This will help us build on our recent successes and allow the campaign to happen when Abbey can remain the lead ministerial support.

This congregation has been incredibly gracious in honoring this process and Rev. Hannah has the complete backing of Rev. Abbey, the rest of the staff, and our Board of Trustees in entering the role of Acting Lead Minister, and she looks forward to serving you with her whole heart during this time.  Do not hesitate to reach out to her and to your other dedicated staff and lay leaders for support during this time. You can expect to receive another version of this come August when Rev. Hannah takes her parental leave!

In faith and with gratitude,

Rev. Abbey and Rev. Hannah

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