"Rob is a thoughtful leader. He is smart, insightful and leverages his ‘ministry of magic’ to help make days brighter and assist others to see the magic within themselves."
Cindy Hale, Coworker and Unitarian Universalist
"You are a wonderful, creative spiritual leader!"
Chaplain Samuel Lowe, PhD, Director of Chaplaincy Services, Boston Medical Center
Where does ministerial authority come from? I believe it begins with a little light inside, perhaps early on during childhood. (My own flickered into view around age eight.) This light remains lit, as if a pilot light, never going out, then grows over the years as life experience accumulates and skills develop. Finally, through religious study, field education, and the ministerial credentialing process -- and a whole lot of discernment -- what was once a pilot light bursts into full flame. In Unitarian Universalism, that fire inside becomes a flaming chalice, and people see and feel this light and warmth emanating from a now-professional minister.
My own light prompted me to always try to pitch in. My leadership experience, detailed in my ministerial record, includes leading workshops, committee projects and volunteer organizations, and most recently founding and developing a nonprofit as a vehicle for social justice, which I describe elsewhere on this site.
In July 2021 I served as Minister of the Week for the Building Bridges and Faith Development weeklong conferences, leading evening chapel services and a bridging ceremony as well as providing pastoral care. I also performed and taught magic.
The seeds of my magic ministry were planted years ago in El Salvador when I toured with Magicians Without Borders. We performed in remote mountain villages and taught city teens magic to help them build a sense that escaping the violence of their country was not impossible.
I know it's not enough to tweet or post, but I believe using my voice as a religious professional with a following (not huge, but widespread) helps our Side with Love efforts. I also use social media to offer pastoral prayer in times of crisis (such as 2016-2020).