Rev. Jenny Rankin, Interim Minister
Born in Boston, Jenny grew up a Unitarian Universalist and believes in the transformative power of a spiritual community to help heal the spirits of its members as well as bring a positive and transforming light to the world. Growing up, she went to public schools in Milton, Mass and then to Princeton University and Harvard Divinity School. She lived for a year in Paris where she worked in a French law firm. She found herself visiting the old cathedrals, encountering for the first time the candlelit, sacred space so common in these ancient sites.
She is fascinated by the history of our liberal religious tradition, both its Unitarian and its Universalist strands and enjoys delving into this history with others. Jenny has led spiritual autobiography classes as well as seminars on Ralph Waldo Emerson, Margaret Fuller, and Henry David Thoreau, as well as the Transcendentalism movement in general. She believes in the power of place to help us learn and to transform us, and is interested in the topic of “pilgrimage” and how we can use our own Unitarian Universalist meetinghouses and physical touchstones to help transmit the spiritual spark and fire we have inherited and pass forward to the next generation.
Jenny enjoys meeting new people and listening to them talk about their lives. She has an “open door” and invites you to call or email her to make an appointment to come and visit.
Rev. Wendy Fitting, Minister Emeritus
The Reverend Wendy Fitting retired from the Gloucester Unitarian Universalist Church on June 30, 2013, after having served as minister for 24 years.
R. Harrison Kelton – Music Director
I’m delighted to be your Music Director. My resume includes five years as music director at First Parish in Lexington and thirty years at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Wellesley. My musical education includes a master’s from New England Conservatory in organ and choral conducting, and a doctorate from BU in musicology. In addition to church music, my special musical interests include music composed by women, the keyboard music of the Baroque, choral music from all ages, and new hymnody.
In addition to being your Music Director, I am an Associate Professor of Music History at Suffolk University.
I live with my family in Newton. My wife Elizabeth is an interior designer, but she is currently staying at home with our two children, Piper (age 6), and Sebastian (born in August 2011).
Lucy Boynton Melvin, Interim Director of Religious Education
Karen Rembert, Church Administrator
Karen assumed the post of church administrator on May 6, 2008. She brings 20 years of knowledge and experience to our church, having served the First Unitarian Society in Schenectady, New York first as co-custodian (with her husband), and then as Church Administrator. For more than 12 years, Karen and her husband, Chuck, spent all their free time visiting Gloucester, and commuted from New York State for 18 months before moving permanently in 2008. Karen treasures her involvement in the life of this special community: Gloucester.
Kerry Mullen, Sexton
Kerry Mullen joined the church in October 1998, along with her wife, Deb Hardy. Both are talented musicians, with Deb being one of Cape Ann’s best guitarists and singer-songwriters. Kerry is an artist by trade and is currently focused on sculptures made with clay, cement and glass.
Kerry says she experiences grace in the simple, physical, day-to-day work of caring for “this old house.”