Developmental Ministry

Welcome Rev. Anastassia Zinke!

The Board of Trustees and the Ministerial Search Committee are delighted to announce that Rev. Anastassia Zinke (she/her/hers) will be joining us on July 1, 2024 to serve as our Developmental Minister.

Rev. Anastassia stood out to us as a minister who practices relationship, trust building, and community connection. This resonated with the Search Team, who recognized that we need to heal and connect on our path to sustainability – both financial and communal.

We are excited for you to get to know her as well! Here is a video message from her to us.

Rev. Anastassia Zinke’s video message to All Souls.

Rev. Anastassia ZinkeRev. Anastassia currently serves as Minister of Equal Standing at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Annapolis, MD. She previously served as the called minister at All Souls Unitarian in Indianapolis, IN. She is a former member of All Souls DC, and served as our summer minister in 2010.

We believe that Rev. Anastassia has the right skills to lead All Souls through this period of developmental ministry. She understands and is committed to helping us achieve our Developmental Ministry Goals:

● To establish a financially sustainable path for the church that enables us to maintain our building and carry out our mission and goals;

● To foster spiritual repair and restoration that enables our progress toward our existing church goal to become a multicultural, multiracial, multigenerational spiritual community that is grounded in authentic relationships, trust, and belonging; and

● To ensure our governance and operational framework enables us to achieve these two goals through shared ministry at a committee, staff, board, and congregational level.

The experience she brings is compelling and gives us confidence as a community that she recognizes the work ahead. She will fit smoothly into our model of a co-equal Executive Team composed of the senior minister and the executive director because she is currently part of a co-equal ministry team at the UU church of Annapolis. She has led successful fundraising and congregational growth at prior UU churches and has a track record of helping congregations work through conflict and its aftermath. In fact, her references specifically talked about her skill in fostering spiritual repair following difficult experiences. She is strongly committed to our 8th Principle work and our goal to strengthen our ability to welcome leaders with marginalized identities. Our 8th Principle work is so essential to the healing and thriving of our All Souls community. You can learn more about her on her ministry website.

All Souls, we have a lot of work to do to achieve the goals of the developmental ministry. This will be a long journey and we can’t do everything at once, but we’re excited to get started! We as a congregation are responsible for not only meeting the goals above, but also developing together as a spiritual community. Rev. Anastassia will be with us every step of the way as we walk the road to restoration and repair. She will support and guide us as we move into the bright future we envision for the community we all love and cherish.

We want to be clear that our community’s developmental ministry work, like any deep growth work, will take time. To help see us through this period and into a successful search for a long-term settled minister, we have signed an initial four-year contract, with options for annual renewal after that, for a total term of up to seven years. We have committed to a check-in with the UUA’s transitions office before every renewal to make sure that we are making accountable progress on our developmental goals and to determine whether a renewal is in the best interest of the congregation.

We are so grateful for the wonderful ministry and great organizational work that Rev. Bill Sinkford has provided to All Souls over the past two years. We will be sharing more information about plans to celebrate his ministry and to welcome Rev. Anastassia and get to know her over the next few weeks and months.

The next few years are going to be an exciting and transformative time in the life of All Souls, and we are looking forward to working with Rev. Anastassia and all of the congregants and staff of All Souls to achieve the Developmental Ministry Goals.

In Faith,

All Souls Board of Trustees
Maya Hermann, President
Clair Null, Vice President
Alan Abramson
Pam Coukos
Sophia Fisher
Gretta Goodwin
Brian Petruska
Justis Tuia

All Souls Ministerial Search Committee
Morgan Duncan, Co-Chair
T Vatnick, Co-Chair
Nadine Bowden
Paula Cole Jones
Mark Ewert
Gregory Ford
Carolynn Fowler-Smith
Jennifer Keller
Erika Landberg
Traci Hughes-Trotter

What is Developmental Ministry?

Developmental ministry is meant for congregations that have serious, and often chronic, structural, financial, spiritual issues and/or an aging historic building that needs work. These congregations work to identify deeper issues that have led to symptoms like burnout, conflict, and turnover. After identifying the needed work, congregations hire, by contract, a developmental minister to serve for a finite period of time (between four to seven years) and to help the congregation focus on that work.

Developmental ministers hired to do this type of work are seasoned ministers, experienced enough to help a congregation take on big challenges that might be beyond the limits of a more junior settled minister. The search process for a developmental minister was different from the process for an interim or settled minister. The developmental minister search process was abbreviated and, since they are hired by the board and not called by the congregation, did not include a congregational vote. The Search Committee and the Board, who were both elected by the congregation to represent the congregation, identified the best candidate, and the Board contracts with the minister.