It used to be that the new year was marked by Spring. Once winter is over and happy times are here again… There have been many ways to mark the passing of time.
Right now, I often find myself saying things like, “in the before times” as a pre pandemic reference. And it is a real and interesting thing, to collectively live when a seemingly natural bookend occurs. We’ve all fundamentally shifted the ways we do things, the ambition we may have had slighted toward something else, visions recast.
Our church will be returning to in-person services on May 30th: the natural book end. But the pandemic isn’t over. We will continue to be inclusive. Our services will be outdoors when possible; we continue to stream our services to be available to folx who can’t be with us in person. When the weather prevents us from being outside, then in our church building we can gather masked.
This has been a difficult year for all of us, and each of us in varying degrees. The pandemic, systemic racism, discrimination, homophobia and transphobia, classism, ability: all of these point toward the intersections of privilege and hardship of life today. I look forward to our return in person!
There is a prayer that has been giving me life:
All That We Share Is Sacred
[written in honor of two Unitarians, Martha and Waitstill
Sharp, who during WWII dared to risk their own comfort in
order to help save the lives of those in desperate need.]
By Andrée Mol
As we gather together,
May we remember
When you share with me what is most important to you,
That is where listening begins.
When I show you that I hear you,
When I say your life matters,
That is where compassion begins.
When I open the door to greet you,
That is where hospitality begins.
When I venture out to bring you to shelter,
That is where love begins.
When I risk my comfort to ease your suffering,
When I act against hatred, violence, and injustice,
That is where courage begins.
When we experience the full presence of each other,
Because of our shared humanity,
Because of our differences,
That is where holy gratitude begins.
May this space be a table
that is not complete
until all are welcome.
May this table be a space of beauty
we create a series of miracles, and
where all that we share is sacred.
May it be so.
Peace be with you,