Terasa Cooley, James Ishmael Ford, Unitarian Universalism, Love Reaches Out, General Assembly, & Providence’s WaterFire

terasa cooley

Terasa Cooley & James Ford being interviewed about Unitarian Universalism, General Assembly, and Providence's famous WaterFire. … [Read more...]

LOVE REACHES OUT A Meditation on the Small & Great Cycles of our Lives

pilgrim seeing through

LOVE REACHES OUT A Meditation on the Small and Great Cycles of our LivesJames Ishmael Ford22 June 2014First Unitarian Church Providence, Rhode IslandI am deeply aware that starting the next time I stand in this pulpit, everything will be the last time I do it as the parish minister of this congregation. And, actually, the last time I do it as a parish minister. Water communion, Christmas, Amnesty International Letter Writing Day, Martin Luther King, Jr., Day, Maundy Thursday … [Read more...]

A Small Meditation on World Humanist Day


As of six ten this morning we have crossed into Summer!And, for the humanist community a day of celebration for rationalism and naturalism. Looks like a very good match to me.In the Unitarian Universalist world there is a tension between the theists and the humanists. In past decades when the humanists were in the ascendancy as a group they weren't always kind to the theists. Sadly, as the tables appear to have turned and theists appear to be in the majority, certainly among the younger … [Read more...]

Theophilius is Born


In my capacity as a Unitarian Universalist minister I have been resistant to the trend among my younger colleagues to wear cassock albs and other white robes when presiding over worship services. In part it is a tip of the hat to Theophilus Lindsey, who was born on this day in 1723.A Cambridge graduate Lindsey was ordained a priest in the Church of England.He was part of a movement within the Church that questioned the Trinity as unscriptural, and with that the generally received … [Read more...]

Viewing Zen Unitarian Universalist James Ford

James for President of the UUA

Here I am on the UUA's Church of the Larger Fellowship's weekly live blog the VUU. Despite the encouragement of the regulars, I don't completely disgrace myself, or, at least, not much more than usual... … [Read more...]

Paul at Seventy-Two

paul mccartney

How time flies.A big part of the background of my younger days...Happy birthday, Paul! … [Read more...]

Death, Love & a Mausoleum

taj mahal

I understand it was on this day in 1631 that Mumtaz Mahal died during childbirth, a tragedy not uncommon in that time and place. What is uncommon was the reaction of her widower, Shah Jahan I. For the next seventeen years he poured his wealth into the creation of a monument to his love.It is easy to slip into a meditation on the excesses of princes. But, today I find myself more called to a reflection on love, even obsessive love.And the miracle of human intimacy...Its … [Read more...]

Birth of the Ghost Story


Okay, no one knows that fact. Probably the ghost story was invented shortly after pornography. And both right after language came along...However, on this day in 1816, according to Wikipedia, "Lord Byron reads Fantasmagoriana to his four house guests at the Villa Diodati, Percy Shelley, Mary Shelley, Claire Clairmont, and John Polidori, and inspires his challenge that each guest write a ghost story, which culminated in Mary Shelley writing the novel Frankenstein, John Polidori writing the … [Read more...]

Recalling Evelyn, of Blessed Memory

evelyn underhill icon by suzanne schleck

In churches of the Anglican communion today is the feast day of Evelyn Underhill. A poet, pacifist and mystic, she is perhaps best remembered for her writings on religon, particularly her 1911 magnum opus, Mysticism. Personally I find her among the best of the Christian expression of the great universal insight.The icon of Evelyn Underhill is by Suzanne Schleck. … [Read more...]

A Feast for Father Brown

g k chesterton

I've just noticed that the Church of England observes today as feast, of sorts, for Gilbert Keith Chesterton, perhaps best known as G. K. Chesterton, critic, biographer, novelist & Christian apologist. According to Wikipedia his "friendly enemy" George Bernard Shaw spoke of Chesterton as "a man of colossal genius." He certainly could write. Me, I liked his spiritual biographies more than his Orthodoxy, although many I know think it is best. But most of all I enjoyed his Father Brown novels and … [Read more...]