Rev. Susie Hayward Joins Mayflower Staff

Mayflower is pleased to announce that Rev. Susie Hayward will serve Mayflower as our Transitional Associate Minister for Justice Organizing and Adult Faith Formation beginning February 13.

Rev. Hayward comes to Mayflower with nearly two decades of experience in human rights, peacebuilding, and teaching in Minneapolis, Washington, DC, and Boston. Born and raised in Edina, Susie cut her teeth in justice as a teenager skipping school to attend anti-war protests downtown as lead of her school’s Amnesty International chapter. Following college, she worked with Advocates for Human Rights in downtown Minneapolis supporting its political asylum and refugee program. After attending graduate school to study religion, violence, and peace, studying Buddhism in Nepal, and working on-the-group for peace in Sri Lanka, she joined the Religion and Peacebuilding program at the U.S. Institute of Peace. Ordained by the UCC to the ministry of religious peacebuilding, her work at USIP had her partnering worldwide with religious leaders of different faiths and backgrounds to transform violence and advance justice.

More recently, Susie helped build the Religion and Public Life program at Harvard Divinity School, supporting seminaries seeking vocations in humanitarianism and organizing.Throughout her career, Susie has remained grounded in local church ministry with UCC congregations in DC and Boston, regularly leading worship and preaching, adult formation, and spearheading local justice work for racial justice and queer rights.And now, she will bring these experiences and insights gained from her global and local ministries to support Mayflower’s own work for justice.

Susie shares this: “I am thrilled to engage in justice ministry with Mayflower.It is deeply exciting to me, especially knowing what a difficult year for justice, peace, and compassion 2024 is likely to be. The local church, and Mayflower in particular, feels like exactly the right place to be directing my energy and focus at this time.For the past 20-something years, I’ve been an occasional visitor to your church. I’ve always been moved by what I’ve experienced in your sanctuary, and by the deep commitment I see expressed in your weekly bulletin’s long list of opportunities to put values into action for the cause of love.

Susie will work for Mayflower 30 hours a week, staffing our justice teams, leading worship, partnering with lay leaders to develop adult spiritual and educational formation programming, and serving on our Leadership Team. Susie plans to remain engaged in her ongoing work advising for Harvard Divinity School, the U.S. Institute of Peace, and supporting a number of religious peacebuilding initiatives. Susie lives in the Whittier neighborhood with her husband Nick, who runs a music studio, step-kid Wren, and their cats, and in her down time she enjoys backcountry canoe trips in the Boundary Waters, live music and plays, and baking bread.

Susie will serve in this position for one year, with the possibility of extender her term upon agreement. This position may evolve into a called position.

Susie’s first day in worship with us will be on February 18. During coffee hour after worship, you will have a chance to meet and greet her.