The members of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Monmouth County (UUCMC) voted unanimously to call the Rev. Dr. Craig Rubano as the fourth settled minister in the congregation’s 67-year history. The process began in January and became official following the Service of Installation held on May 7 at the UUCMC meetinghouse in Lincroft.
Raised Episcopalian, Rev. Rubano spent 15 years of his early childhood with his family in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he had formative experiences of interfaith cooperation. He later attended Yale College, majoring in literature, and then Columbia University for a Master of Arts degree in English and comparative literature. He then took an interesting turn and spent several years singing and performing on Broadway and concert stages.
Following the Sept. 11, 2001 attack, Rev. Rubano decided to return to his studies, earning a Master of Divinity, a Master of Theology degree in pastoral care, as well as a Ph.D. in pastoral theology from Princeton Theological Seminary. Along the way, he immersed himself in the competencies required for Unitarian Universalist ministry, completed a two-year Intern Ministry at UUCMC, and was ordained in 2018 by the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Princeton.
Rev. Rubano writes, “The Unitarian Universalist Association was formed in 1961 through a merger of The American Unitarian Association and the Universalist Church of America—two Christian denominations with spiritual roots in the Protestant Reformation merging to become something larger and more inclusive than Christianity alone. In Unitarian Universalism, I felt able to express fully as a minister the many sources of theological insight that had informed my own story. I experienced the theological and social action work of the Unitarian Universalist movement to be uniquely affirming of all beings and creation.”
Now, UUCMC is delighted to covenant with Rev. Rubano to share a spiritual journey, and to carry forth UUCMC’s hallowed legacy of social justice and inclusion.
“We hope everyone will feel welcomed Sunday mornings at 10:30 at our place of worship, with the word ‘worship’ in its original definition as ‘a shaping concern for all that is of worth,’” Rev. Rubano said. “Seen as you walk through our doors and carved into the pulpit from which I preach are the symbols of many of the world religions—all are welcome here. Rather than starting from a place of creedal adherence, we begin with covenanted promises for how we will behave with one another, and for how we will work to effect change in the world. I am very excited to begin making relationships in the surrounding communities to share our message of hope and inclusion more broadly. This is a vibrant, multigenerational place of spiritual seekers, a religious movement that seeks always to draw the circle of our concern wider, and wider still. I’m privileged to assist in launching a new chapter in UUCMC’s history.”
To learn more about the Rev. Dr. Craig Rubano, visit uucmc.org/meet-our-minister. While there, you can also learn more about the Unitarian Universalist faith, see archived sermons, and see the many ways members of this congregation work to help in social causes, and create spiritual understanding and diversity.