Pastoral Care at UUFA

We Care About Our Members!

One of UUFA’s stated missions or purposes is to care for one another. We fulfill this goal by occasionally assisting one another in our daily living, such as caring for a pet or houseplant while you’re on vacation, delivering a meal when a new baby arrives, or driving you to the Fellowship on a Sunday morning.

We also fulfill this goal by celebrating our joys and sorrows together. We gather for memorial services and wedding ceremonies. We dedicate new life and welcome new members to our congregational community. And we take turns in the raising of our community’s children by volunteering in our religious exploration program on Sunday and for special events.

Office, Home, and Hospital Visits

Rev. Alison Eskildsen cares about you, too. She wants you to feel welcome to meet with her when you feel the need. She wants to affirm and support whatever is going on in your life. If your family does not know about your connection to the Fellowship or how to reach us in an emergency, please give them her contact information, Rev. Alison Eskildsen, (rev.eskildsen@uuathensga.org, 706.424.9449).

Rev. Alison, the Pastoral Care Team, and Rev. Don Randall (drrandall5@gmail.com), will make pastoral visits to your home or hospital room. But we don’t respond if you don’t let us know when you’re in need of our presence. Please let us know how you’re doing and if we can assist you in some special way. We don’t pretend to take the place of family, but especially when you have no family, we do our best to help.

When to Call Rev. Alison 

Several years ago, Rev. Dr. Peter Lee Scott wrote the template for when to contact a minister. Here’s one version:

Call the minister when

–You don’t know me, but would like to, or you’d like me to know you better.
–You are upset with me, or would like to express appreciation.
–You have religious or spiritual questions.
–You are seeking to deepen your spiritual practices.
–You have problems with your job, children, marriage, parents, school, or anything else where a sympathetic ear might help you sort through the issues.
–You are going to the hospital, having surgery, find out you have a serious illness or condition, or know of someone else in the congregation who has any of these experiences.
–Someone close to you has died or is critically ill or you’re dealing with a significant loss or transition of some kind.
–You are planning to be married, separated, or divorced.
–You would like your child dedicated in a special blessing ceremony.
–You are pregnant and glad you are; you are pregnant and wish you weren’t.
–You feel ready to join the congregation, or have questions about membership.
–You want to explore new ways to engage in congregational life.
–You have concerns or suggestions related to congregational life.
–You want to make a large donation to the church.
–You just want to talk.

Before Calling

If you’re experiencing a pastoral emergency and need to talk to Rev. Alison, please call her! But if it is not an emergency and it’s after 7 pm, consider calling in the morning.

Retired UU minister, the Rev. Marilyn Sewall, humorously (or not) suggested when NOT to call the minister:

–You want to give her “the real scoop” on another member
–You want to explain that you’ll have to cut your pledge in half because you are spending the summer in the south of France
–You want to tell her you didn’t like what she wore in the pulpit last Sunday
–You want to tell her that one of the reasons you are a UU is that you have always distrusted organized religion (Which must mean our’s is a disorganized religion!)

Blessings to those who follow the ways of Rev. Sewall and Rev. Scott.