Sue Magidson has completed her course work and will graduate from Starr King, our West Coast UU seminary, named in honor of UU minister, Thomas Starr King – during the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln credited King with preventing California from becoming a separate republic.
Sue is a life-long Unitarian Universalist – a graduate of our R. E. program. In her formal statement for accreditation for UU ministry she wrote, “As much as I was raised by my parents, I was raised by the Unitarian Church in Westport. That congregation saved my family and has profoundly influenced who I am today.”
Sue’s father died when she was six years old. She writes, “I don’t know how my family would have survived my father’s death were it not for the Unitarian Church in Westport.”
Her mother, Micki Magidson, was an active member of our congregation until her death seven years ago. By the time I arrived Sue was a college student. She said, “When I was in college my church called a new minister…although I was not home to hear him preach, Rev. Frank Hall wrote biweekly, full-page letters to the congregation in which he used his life as grist for his ministry. Frank taught by example about the challenges of living his values…he lived an examined life and shared his humanness with the congregation. He took ministry down off its pedestal and breathed life into it.”
Sue writes about her winding path to seminary some twenty years after college, saying, “I love this faith and I know its challenges. I am grateful to have been raised with UU values, to have been encouraged to open my heart and mind wider and wider.”
Her next step along the path is to do a year-long internship at our church in San Diego. “After four wonderful years of seminary, I am feeling ready and excited for this next step on my journey toward ministry.”
It is, of course, gratifying to be included among those who influenced that path, and to be part of a congregation that was so important in her life. It’s also a reminder of the importance of the care work we do with one another, which we’re trying to enhance with the creation of our twenty four neighborhood Circles of Care.
Sue’s words of appreciation about her church set a high standard, don’t they? We’re in the process of organizing each of the circles – most now have a facilitator, someone who will help make it easy to get to know one another and to coordinate meals and visits for shut-ins, rides for those in need of transportation to church, doctor’s appointments or shopping, and calls and cards to those who would appreciate the support.
I’d be glad to talk with you about the ways you can help with our organizing efforts – the circles that already have a facilitator would appreciate a partner, and those that don’t have a facilitator need someone to step forward. Most of the contact will be by phone or email.
We’re inspired and challenged by Sue Magidson’s affirmation as we share the work of ministry.