Our Minister and Staff
Rev. Marcus Liefert,
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: (415) 578-9632
Rev. Liefert serves our congregation as a Developmental Minister, working on five goals the congregation established as priorities to grow in health and vibrancy.
Rev. Liefert is a dynamic speaker and storyteller who leads worship services that engage the head, heart, and spirit. One focus of his ministry is multiculturalism, rooted in the Unitarian Universalist vision of a justice-centered beloved community that finds strength and wholeness in embracing diversity. As a Millennial—a member of the least church-going generation in American history—he also seeks creative ways to support the congregation to meet the needs of youth and young adults.
Brought up in the Bay Area, Rev. Liefert is a graduate of Starr King Seminary in Berkeley. He has served congregations in Vancouver, British Columbia and Rochester, New York. Rev. Liefert lives in Berkeley with his four-year-old son, Henry.
Rev. Theresa Novak, Affiliated Minister
Rev. Theresa and her spouse, Anne Spatola, first joined UUCM in the mid-90’s when their three children were small. Both were active lay leaders until Theresa took early retirement from the Social Security Administration and entered Starr King School for the Ministry. She graduated with a Masters of Divinity in 2007 and UUCM ordained her that same year. After serving an internship in Annapolis, Maryland, Rev. Theresa served the UU Church of Ogden, Utah for seven years. They have honored her by naming her Minister Emerita. After returning to California, Rev. Theresa served as a part time minister for the Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarians and later as an interim minister for the UU’s of Petaluma. She is now retired and happy to be back at UUCM. Anne and Theresa are both active in the Unitarian Universalist Retired Ministers and Partners Association. As our affiliated minister, Rev. Theresa offers occasional worship services and sometimes teaches classes.
Joe Gabaeff, Intern Minister
Mr. Gabaeff is a third year Master of Divinity student at Starr King School for the Ministry and is on track toward UU ordination after graduation.
Growing up ‘unchurched,’ Mr. Gabaeff found his way to Unitarian Universalism in February 2014 when he first attended services at UU Santa Rosa, which eventually became a spiritual home and sanctuary. Upon becoming a member of that church in 2016, Mr. Gabaeff began to explore his call to create safe spaces and passages within a UU context. Combining spiritual heritages of Hinduism, Humanism, Science, and nature-based practices, Mr. Gabaeff holds presence that is both accepting and transformative. He seeks to serve with an open mind, loving heart and helping hands. The most important thing to know about Mr. Gabaeff’s ministry is that you, all of you, are welcome here.
Born and raised in California, Mr. Gabaeff currently lives in Novato with his partner, Bonnie.
Rev. Lynne Scarpa, Director of Family Ministries
Raised in the Bay Area, Rev. Lynne earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Water Resources from Humboldt State University, and a Master of Divinity from Pacific School of Religion. She has taught science for elementary schools both in outdoor and classroom settings. As a city stormwater program manager, she conducted numerous stormwater trainings to City staff and volunteers. She also taught Pollution Prevention in Egypt and the Philippines with curriculum created by herself and her colleagues.
The Metropolitan Community Church (MCC) ordained Rev. Lynne in 1995. As minister she coordinated religious education and volunteer programs in addition to performing other roles. After seven years, she left ministry to raise her two sons. In the church where she and her wife Nancy raised their children, she coordinated and taught religious education as a volunteer.
Now that her sons are adults, Rev. Lynne returns to ministry as our Director of Family Ministries. She coordinates and supports staff and volunteers to provide a robust Sunday program for our children, as well as creating events for families to connect with one another. Rev. Lynne encourages play-based learning and the incorporation of songs and music into the curriculum to reinforce our spiritual values. She collaborates with Rev. Liefert in the integration of children in worship and in creating interactive holiday services. She also works to integrate social justice opportunities into the youth program.
Luka Coole is a third generation UU, born and raised in Sonoma County. They have previously studied early childhood education, though they are currently pursuing degrees in theatre arts and fashion design. Working with children and families has been a big part of their life and one of their many passions, mainly taking the form of supporting children with special needs and their families. Luka has attended UUCM since August 2018, and joined as a member in 2019. Throughout their time at UUCM they have served as a greeter, a worship associate, and volunteer RE teacher. Now, they are delighted to serve as Childhood Coordinator and to be working with the elementary class and assisting with the preschool and kindergartens online.
Charlotte is a third-generation Unitarian Universalist, raised in New Jersey. She as been interested in religion and spirituality since she was a child. At 15 she decided that she wanted to become a minister. As a teenager, Charlotte spent her summers teaching English in countries like Ghana and Thailand, and learning Italian in Rome. Youth Group was a huge passion for her—Charlotte loved this community deeply, and participated as an active member and leader. After two years of college, Charlotte decided to pursue her passion for deep spiritual discovery, and started on an adventure of a lifetime, farming in Vermont, living in an ashram and spiritual community in California, and managing a retreat center in Costa Rica. Because of COVID19, Charlotte returned to the United States where her passion to become a minister was reignited after witnessing the collapse of society and the dire situations in hospitals. Charlotte now lives in Berkeley and attends Starr King School for the Ministry with the hopes of becoming a chaplain and minister. Charlotte loves working with youth of all ages, and is excited to be a Youth Coordinator co-teaching with Carter Smith. She hopes to provide the support, love, community, and joy for our teens that she received as a teenager.
Amanda Nelson, Music Director
Amanda Morando has been the choir director here at UUCM since late 2012. She has sung in choirs since she was young and received a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from UC Santa Barbara in 2010. She studied conducting with Jan Pedersen Schiff at Singers Marin as the youth choral program director. Currently, other than her position as choir director, she teaches Music & Drama at Dixie Elementary School, Drama at Vallecito Elementary, and teaches and directs children’s musicals at Rhythms Performing Arts in Novato.
Milton Wong, Pianist
Milton works with numbers by day at CSAA Insurance Group but fills his evenings and weekends with various musical activities. Chamber music being his favorite musical genre, he plays piano, violin, and viola in several freelance chamber music ensembles in the Bay Area. Milton graduated with a minor in music, has a lot of accompanying and orchestral experience and has been the pianist at UUCM since 1993.
BE Lundy, Administrator
Email: email@example.com Direct: (415) 578 9577