Congregation History from 1950
Originally, small gatherings to hear interesting speakers were held in members’ homes, but as the congregation grew, schools, other church buildings, or social clubs provided a meeting space.
One such was the Federation Center for the Blind on Kilbourne Road.
In 1962, the congregation purchased its first permanent home on Beltline Blvd. where its membership and programs began to expand.
In 1972, the first part-time minister, Rev. Roger Sizemore, was hired. Rapid growth followed and, in 1975, the congregation moved into an old Episcopal church in Olympia Mill Village.
From 1978 to 1980, the Fellowship was lay-led. In 1980, Rev. Christine Robinson was hired, first as part-time minister, and then soon increased to full-time.
During the almost ten years she was minister, the congregation experienced a dynamic period of growth—becoming the fastest growing fellowship in the Thomas Jefferson District. The Tree of Life Synagogue in Columbia’s Shandon neighborhood had became the next location of the Fellowship and has remained the site through the present.
In 1988, Rev. Robinson resigned to move to a larger congregation in New Mexico. Again, the congregation was lay-led while a ministerial search was conducted.
Rev. Mark Allstrom served as minister from late 1989 until mid 1993. He was followed by UUA interim minister Rev. Thom Payne who served briefly but resigned due to health issues.
Rev. Patrick Price was hired in 1995 and remained until 2004. Most recently, the Unitarian Universalist Congregation whose name was changed in 2006 has been served by Rev. Neal R. Jones. Rev. Jones, hired part-time in 2004, began full-time in 2007, and continued until 2015, when he resigned to take a larger congregation in Pennsylvania.
In 2019, Rev Stephen Robinson was hired to be our part time minister.