This ritual was developed to mark the end of a two-year co-ministry which took place at a historically Congregational, UCC-affiliated church that hired two Unitarian Universalist ministers, one ordained and one in Candidate status. It was designed to honor the Congregational Polity that both traditions share.
(deacons and ministers gather together at the front of the sanctuary)
– The Deacons: (speak in unison)
As deacons and ministers, we have worked side by side. As deacons and ministers, each of us has shined a light that the others might see.
Entrusted by the congregation of this church, we have taken seriously our duties to lead this church and continue its ministry. We have learned from one another and grown deep affection for each other.
It is with mutual admiration and high hopes that we say this ministry ends, so that another may start.
– The Congregation: (spoken in unison)
We stand with you, with gratitude in our hearts and in the midst of a great cloud of witnesses of lay people and ministers who have come before us.
We honor the sacrifices and vision of our religious ancestors, holding in our hands and hearts the earnest responsibility and authority to conclude this co-ministry.
We make true and real this dissolution here and now.