our minister, Rev. Seth Carrier-Ladd 


Hello! I’m so excited to be serving as the interim minister for this wonderful

community  during the ’20-21 and ’21-22 church years. Interim ministry is the

period between settled ministers in Unitarian Universalism we take to allow

time for grieving and letting go of the last settled minister, while we search

for the next long-term minister of the church. I’m excited to be here for these

two years to help with the transition of this beautiful community of good-hearted 

people here who care deeply for and support one another.

A little bit about my background: I grew up attending the Unitarian Society of

Northampton and Florence, in Northampton, Ma. After graduating from

Deerfield Academy, I attended Union College in Schenectady, NY, where

I received a B.A. in East Asian Studies. After six years working in telecommunications,

I went back to school, receiving my Master of Divinity degree from Andover Newton

Seminary in 2011, back when it was still located in nearby Newton Center.

During seminary is also when I met my now spouse, Elizabeth, who is also a

Unitarian Universalist minister – she is currently the minister at First Parish

Dorchester. We’re fortunate to have four wonderful children

Mira, Theo, Elias and Phoebe, who are as of fall 2020, all ages six and under.

We also have two dogs, River and Bosco, and are enjoying our new house in Revere, having recently returned to our Massachusetts roots following a 7-year sojourn in Indiana.

Over the course of my life I have been also been incredibly fortunate to have had multiple

opportunities to live, study and travel abroad, including spending my junior undergraduate year

studying in Japan, six months living and working in London, a month in China volunteering, a

trip to Australia for the 2009 World Parliament of Religions, two weeks in Senegal, and a

Unitarian Universalist service trip to Haiti where we helped lay the foundations for the first three

houses in a 100-home eco-village for refugees from the earthquake in Port-au-Prince. Getting

kids slowed us down quite a bit, but we very fortunate that we got to spend six weeks of my

recent sabbatical in on the beach in Costa Rica. If you’d like to hear more about any of these

experiences, or would just like to learn more about the church or Unitarian Universalism in

general, please make an appointment so we can talk. Having a conversation would then also be a

great opportunity for me to learn more about you!


Whether you are a first-time visitor, a long-time member of the church, or anywhere in between,

I look forward to getting to know you. Meaningful relationship based on inclusive love and

respect, where we learn together and support each other on our religious and life journeys – this

is the foundation of our church community. I look forward to getting to know you!

peace and blessings,

Rev. Seth

Rev. Seth 1
Two kids
Seth and Theo
Story for All ages
Rev. Seth 2

October 24, 2017

UUCM invites women, girls and femme-identifying sibling to gather Saturday


Over a decade ago, Tarana Burke started a movement to help support young Women of Color who had experienced sexual assault, harassment, and exploitation. She used the hashtag “metoo.” Today, the #metoo campaign has spread to women all over the country and world as woman and girls post the words “me too” on social media, claiming their place in a club nobody wants to join. On Saturday, November 4th at 5 pm, the UU congregation is opening its doors for the same reason.

October 05, 2017

Rev. Wendy von Courter of the Unitarian Universalist Church in Marblehead urged people not to give up, and to keep fighting for justice.

“We light these candles of solace and solidarity. I beg us all to claim our power and keep it relentlessly present, and do what we can when many, including ourselves, have not,” von Courter said.

September 05, 2017

Reaction on the North Shore to DACA repeal was swift and passionate

Reaction on the North Shore has been swift and passionate to President Trump’s decision to repeal DACA (the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy), including from Congressman Seth Moulton, who is co-sponsoring new bills to protect so-called Dreamers..

August 28, 2017

Marblehead minister responds to Sheriff Joe’s pardon

Somethings seem too obscene to be true. And you need to see them to believe them.

In 2010, I first learned about Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s self-proclaimed concentration camps. I heard he forced inmates to wear pink underwear, socks and clothing to humiliate them. I heard he housed them in an outdoor “tent-city” where temperatures swelled to more than 120 degrees. I heard he prided himself on spending more on feeding his guard dogs than prisoners. I also heard he routinely stopped and jailed people because they looked like they might be undocumented immigrants, and people were harmed and even died in his jail.

And so I went to see. I learned it was all true.

December 08, 2016

Report to police about person of color creates Facebook flap in Marblehead

"... Reverend Wendy Von Courter, Minister at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Marblehead and founding member of the Marblehead Racial Justice Team, wrote in an email that the team “is in the planning stages of offering a monthly conversation space” with hopes that the online commenters will participate. She also expressed her disappointment regarding the police log report and hopes that the community can move forward to become a more accepting environment.

“This isn’t about who called, why they called, what generation they’re from, whether they were quoted correctly or not,” she wrote. “This is not about shaming people or comparing experiences. Our great opportunity is to face the reality that real oppression exists in all of our communities.” ..."



November 16, 2016

Protesters 'Wall Off' Trump Outside RNC Arena

Demonstrators organized in a public square outside the Republican National Convention to protest Republican nominee Donald Trump's negative rhetoric used while on the campaign trail.
Protesters carried a makeshift wall made from fabric and donned fabric 'walls' over their clothes, spray painted with "Wall Off Trump."

Rev. Wendy von Courter of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Marblehead says the protest was to raise awareness on just what a vote for Trump really means.

July 20, 2016

"...The Rev. Wendy von Courter said she and other Mijente protesters were there for one reason: "To continue to draw attention to what a vote for Trump means. It's a vote against blacks and Hispanics."

Von Courter called James Luther Adams, an Americans professor at Harvard Divinity School during World War II, a source of inspiration and guidance. She said Adams "often quoted Germans who regretted not stopping Hitler before he rose to power." ..."

April 23, 2016

100 Women Walked 100 Miles to Echo Pope’s Message on Immigrant Dignity

Reverend Wendy Von Courter, a Unitarian Universalist minister from Massachusetts, said her faith demanded her to attend the border pilgrimage. “There are higher laws than the laws created here in the United States. There is the law of theology which calls us all as equal brothers and sisters and siblings,” she said. “The [immigration] laws that we have created, from my perspective, can and should be broken.”

January 09, 2016

"...The Rev. Wendy von Courter, parish minister of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Marblehead, said at the press conference that Obama should display the same compassion for Central American children as he did this week when he wept for child victims of gun violence in America.


“Mr. President,” she said. “How can it be that some children are worth crying for and others not?” ..."

September 16, 2015

"...The Rev. Wendy von Courter, a pastor with a Unitarian Universalist church in Marblehead, Mass., said the faith community is called upon to look at the immigration issue as a human rights issue.

"We are called to love our neighbor and see injustice to all," she said. "As soon as people see the stories and meet the people involved - people who are harmed in hideous ways - I think it changes things." ..."

September 16, 2015


Inmates locked their fingers through the chainlink fences and watched a large group of activists link hands and touch feet for a moment of silence on the grounds of the York County Prison Tuesday morning.

Soon the silence, directed by Wendy Von Zirpolo, who ministers to a Unitarian Universalist congregation in Massachusetts, was broken as 100 women and their myriad of supporters broke out in chants that alternated between Spanish and English and waved both handmade- and professionally-made signs. ..."


June 26, 2015

Marblehead couples, elected officials react to Supreme Court’s equality decision

Rev. Wendy Von Courter of Marblehead’s Unitarian Universalist Church, where she married her now wife, Gini Courter, two months ago, celebrated the day’s news at a conference in Portland, Ore.

“This morning my wife and I went out to breakfast chanting ‘married everywhere’ to colleagues along the way,” she said, adding she and Gini Courter henceforth “will walk hand in hand through every state.”

The court’s majority opinion has transformed “systems of entitlement and privilege to those rooted in inherent worth, dignity and respect for all human beings,” the reverend said.


August 05, 2014

"...Minister arrested again

“I feel called to a higher law,” said the Rev. Wendy von Zirpolo, activist minister of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Marblehead, on getting arrested at the White House recently. She was part of a group protesting the “unfair deportations” of children who entered the country illegally.

Von Zirpolo has been arrested twice before, in Phoenix in 2010 while protesting Arizona’s immigration law, and in Washington, D.C., last September during an immigration protest. She suspects this won’t be her last arrest.

“I wish I didn’t need to do this. Truly, being handcuffed isn’t fun,” she said. “ ... But what Latino and other people of color are facing every day in this country is far more heinous, and we have to make it stop.” ..."

August 12, 2010

"...The Rev. Wendy von Zirpolo, minister of the UU Church of Marblehead, Mass., and president of UU Allies for Racial Equity, was arrested at the county jail with Morales and Frederick-Gray. The experience was “physically frightening,” she said. “The experience validated much of what I understand about white privilege and racism.” She said that while she experienced some roughness during the arrest and the jail experience was harsh, fellow inmates of color were treated far worse.

Held overnight in a cell with as many as 30 other women, von Zirpolo said the group bonded, even those people who had been arrested for other issues. “It was an unintended consequence of their strategy to disrupt our sleep by moving us around. Each time, we would share names and origins. We sang together, held those who needed to cry, demanded medical attention for our sisters in need, and most importantly, listened to each others stories. We made community.” ..."

June 09, 2008

"... The Rev. Wendy von Zirpolo, minister of the UU Church of Marblehead, Mass., is ARE’s president. “The resolution was basically an extension of what we’d already done,” she said in a telephone interview. “We see ourselves not only as a voice of allyship, but as a movement seeking opportunities to continually engage our congregations in the work of owning our own identities, our own roles, and in taking a truthful look at our history. . . . We have these heroic stories of our abolitionists, but that’s only half of the story. As an allies movement we’re called to own our entire truth.” ...".

December 18, 2006

Why Here? Why Now? Why Us? The Urgency for White Ally Activisim

General Assembly 2006 Event 2058

Sponsor: Moderator, Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA)

Presenters: The Allies for Racial Equity Steering Committee, including Gini Courter, Katherine Holt, Nancy Lawrence, Annette Marquis, Tim Murphy, Rev. Josh Pawalek, Rev. Wendy von Zirpolo

"I'm delighted to moderate this workshop," said Gini Courter to begin the workshop "Why Here? Why Now? Why Us?: The Urgency for White Ally Activism." Courter, who is also the moderator of the Unitarian Universalist Association, spoke to between 150 and 175 people, mostly white.

Courter explained why she in particular was helping to present this workshop. Speaking as a white person, she feels that much of anti-racism work needs to be done by white people. "It is easy for [white] allies to pick up the work," said Courter. "It will be done because there are white people who want to end racism." Courter thanked the white people present at the workshop for being present and "for getting ready to do the work."

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 Unitarian Universalist
Church of marblehead 



28 Mugford Street

Marblehead, MA 01945

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