A Former Member Asks the Minister for a Favor

She says her family shuns her. She says it has something to do with God. She says the cancer has gone way too far. She says when her brother died the family pastor said he went straight to hell and “Let that be a lesson.” She says, “Will you do my funeral?” A light rain [Read More...]

Prayers for the Possible

In 1854, Rev. Theodore Parker prayed: “Help us to grow stronger and nobler by this world’s varying good and ill, and while we enlarge the quantity of our being by continual life, may we improve its kind and quality not less, and become fairer, and tenderer, and heavenlier too, as we leave behind us the [Read More...]

For You Were a Stranger in Egypt

There are many biblical passages calling people to offer hospitality to the stranger. Here is one from the 19th chapter of the book of Leviticus: When strangers sojourn with you in your land, you shall do them no wrong, the strangers who sojourn with you shall be to you as natives among you, and you [Read More...]

SHINE

love is the voice under all silences; the hope which has no opposite in fear; the strength so strong mere force is feebleness; the truth more first than sun more last than star. ~ e.e. cummings Beloveds, today the sun is shining. Yesterday the sun was shining too, even though it was pouring rain here [Read More...]

The People’s Work

In The Prophetic Imperative: Social Gospel in Theory and Practice, Rev. Richard Gilbert lays out a Unitarian Universalist interpretation of worship. He wrote: The church is a worshipping community, a religious community that deliberately and regularly gathers together to celebrate life in all its dimensions. Worship understood as the celebration of life is the most [Read More...]

There Is No Failure But Not To Try

We do not have to wait until we are perfect to practice our faith. While the perfection of Jesus is lifted up in many congregations on this holy weekend, it is humanity that has always drawn Unitarian Universalists towards his prophetic message of love and justice.  Our faith tells us that it is not perfection [Read More...]

Why I am a Unitarian Universalist

At college I found a small group of humanists who called themselves Unitarian Universalists. They were joyful people whose values of commitment and compassion I admired. I was not alone. [Read more...]

Smoke Signals

The drama of the selection of the new pope has captivated the world, and why wouldn’t it? They’ve just selected the first non-European pope in 1300 years. There is the question of how the new pope will deal with the sexual molestation scandals that have rocked the Church. There is, of course, the reality that [Read More...]

This Is What’s Happening

This is what’s happening, now. It is the last day of our week-and-a-half West Coast trip. We are in Portland, Oregon, the city where I was born and grew up, where I know a thousand places I would love to go–this and that bookstore, that cafe, and oh, the breakfast places I would love to [Read More...]

High Resolve

“Keep fresh before me the moments of my High Resolve, that in fair weather or in foul, in good times or in tempests, in the days when the darkness and the foe are nameless or familiar, I may not forget that to which my life is committed.” ~ Rev. Dr. Howard Thurman Carnival has passed. [Read More...]