In considering the competencies for UU ministry, we are blessed to have the work of the Market Voice Consulting for the Panel on Theological Education. At this link, you can download "Report on Excellence in Ministry." Market Voice Consulting found consistent agreement on the following competencies:
– Strong interpersonal skills.
– Self-aware, understands boundaries, mature.
– Compassionate and caring.
– Inclusive and supportive.
– Thorough knowledge of UU history and traditions.
– Solid grounding in theology – history, sacred writings, beliefs, cultural impact – not just UU.
– Savvy about organizational and institutional dynamics.
– Passionate about the work, a strong sense of calling.
– Challenges people and congregations to be their best.
Furthermore, they added:
Some people say excellence is determined by how well-matched the minister and the position/job are.
While these competencies require further review to turn them into behavioral standards, it seems like we're off to a good start in competency identification.
While there is little doubt that there are shared competencies for serving as the senior minister at a large congregation, the sole minister of a small congregation, a minister of religious education, a prison chaplain, a medical chaplain, a military chaplain, a community organizer, and the director of a legislative ministry office, it is quite likely that different positions require different competencies.
It is understandable why the Ministerial Fellowshipping Committee (MFC) would not want to examine all ministerial candidates on all competencies or even on the competencies that are specific to certain assignments. However, it appears that individuals who are not preparing for parish ministry are much more likely to be tested on uniquely parish ministry competencies while individuals who are preparing for parish ministry are unlikely to being examined on competencies not required for parish ministry.