Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Monday, December 29, 2008
I hope by now the bustle of the holiday season has worn down and the quiet(er) calm of January has set in. For me, this is often a time of personal reflection. It is a time to take stock of the past year and look to where I want to head in the next. While I don’t generally make resolutions, I do try to take an honest look at my life and the direction that it is heading. What is going well? Where do I want to make changes? How do I want to shape the coming year?
An important aspect that is often overlooked in our New Year’s review is our spiritual life. How are we growing in our spiritual development? Rare is the person who has “finished” their spiritual growth. Are you taking the time to meet your spiritual needs? Is F. meeting your spiritual needs? Spirituality has many manifestations. Some of us find it in nature (F. Hikers), others in small group ministry (Covenant Groups). Maybe being an active steward of the Earth (F.’s Green groups) fulfills you or study of historical texts (F. Bible Study). Perhaps human dignity (Room At the Inn) and social justice (Family Alliance) are what brings you closer to living your faith. These are just a sampling of the variety of ways that F. can help you on your spiritual journey. I encourage you to look at yourself, your family, your life and follow that path that brings meaning to you.
Volunteer Membership Coordinator
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Monday, December 22, 2008
Friday, December 19, 2008
Cat Tunnel: Amy Butler's "In Stitches" book
Nightgown: Simplicity 8488
Reading Pillows: Sew Liberated - http://sewliberated.com/
Coloring Wallets: JCasa*Handmade - http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=36900
Soap Buddies: Plumppudding - http://myplumpudding.blogspot.com/2008/04/soap-buddies.html
I have officially maxed out my sewing patience and am planning to take a little break - at least until January!
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Sunday, December 14, 2008
What I love best about pageants is watching all the children shine. I have at one time or another taught most of the kids in the pageant. Some I thought would never participate and there they were singing a solo! speaking lines! participating! Just like with my own children, I enjoy watching them bring themselves to the part. This is one of the aspects of coming together in community that I love. Even though those are not my children, I care about them and I know other parents care about my children. I want the best for them and I want them to be able to confidently spread their wings. I want our church to be part of this process. I want our church to matter to our children.
Friday, December 12, 2008
Monday, December 8, 2008
Friday, December 5, 2008
Monday, December 1, 2008
I would love to hear what stands out in your mind about Christmas.
Friday, November 21, 2008
This led me to my ever present internal debate about marketing. My gut reaction is I can't stand it. Is so pervasive and in your face that I feel like I can never escape it. It is just too much and too influential, especially to our children. It is very difficult to control it. But, what about the marketing that brings to my attention products that I feel are beneficial? I love looking at the adds in Mother Earth News and Threads (I love to sew) to see what new products are out there. Without Magic Cabin, I would not be aware of all the alternative, natural toys out there. But, I can not stand Toy's R Us ads. I am feeling a little hypocritical. Where is the line? Is there a way to market without being so invasive? I would love to see it.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
According to UUSC, "Around the world, 1.1 billion people do not have access to safe drinking water. Each year, dehydration from disease claims the lives of nearly 2 million children." Additionally, many countries charge people for water. People who are barely surviving have to literally pay at the pump to get water. I encourage you all to go to UUSC's site (http://www.uusc.org/) to read more about this important issue.
This wonderful video is making the rounds on the blogosphere and is a great way to start to get involved. I love it for its alternative view on the holidays and ways to make a difference to so many people.
Monday, November 17, 2008
Friday, November 14, 2008
Thursday, November 13, 2008
What does it mean to you? Do you feel the need to sign the membership book to feel like you belong? Have you signed a membership and still not felt like you were really a member of the community? While the number of members a congregation has is measured by the names in its Membership Book, I feel it can be a weak indicator of the real membership of the congregation. Sure, you can have 300 in the book, but only 100 active members. Or the reverse, perhaps you you have 150 active members but only 75 have signed. What is the true indicator of membership? Should those people who don't sign, but in every other way act in covenant with the congregation, be considered members? Conversely, what use is it to have lots of members in the book if they don't show any real commitment to the congregation? How do you measure numbers like that? Is it really even important?
I would be curious to hear what you consider it is to be a member. Why or why not is it important to you. Can you only be in covenant with a congregation if you have signed to book? How many books have you signed? Was it hard or easy to join? Did you take any classes? Did it feel like a special occasion? Did you expect more then what happened? I would really appreciate any insight you may have. I am looking to rework our process and make it as meaningful as possible.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Monday, November 3, 2008
Saturday, November 1, 2008
Now, can you believe it is already November!
*That's right, I made those!
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
In a word, it is the people. This past Sunday we had our Newcomer's Potluck Diner. I was in charge of organizing it (as the new Membership Coordinator). Since I had never attended one, I was a little unsure of what was expected. What I discovered was a core group of volunteers that had been doing this for years and quickly stepped up to help. They were fantastic and open to new ideas of doing things. There is no better bonding practice then washing dishes together! I also had a wonderful time meeting new people and making new, fresh connections to the church. Their energy and excitement was infectious. When I look back to all the frustration of the previous year, being together in community with this small group helped me remember why I made a covenant with my church. Sometimes reaching out and making true connections is what makes all the difference.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
I want to mention, though, I do realize that I am lucky to have options. These issues are purely relational and not related to health or livelihood. I am just not sure why it is so hard to let go of relationships/situations that we are not technically bound to. Why do I/we continue with the negative? Why is it never easy?
Monday, October 20, 2008
We have recently added a new pet to the family, Daisy. She is a wonderful mixed-breed, four year-old, rescued dog. She comes to us after a year and a half at a no-kill shelter. She is gentle and well-behaved. The kids love her, as do I! I am hoping this is the beginning of a long relationship, it is off to such a great start.
One of the added benefits of Daisy, is the return of being able to walk at night. I love walking at night, but don't feel particularly safe without a companion. Daisy fits the bill perfectly! With the weather turning cooler, the evenings have been perfect. I love walking around when it is quiet and still out. Everything seems so peaceful. I like to imagine people in their houses winding down for the night, a calm in the air. I love being able to see the stars and hear the leaves blowing in the wind. It is my favorite time of the night and I am glad to be able to enjoy it again.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Mother nature also pulled a few strings for me. I love heirloom tomatoes and seeded them way too late. But, wouldn't you know, it was the wettest spring on record and I couldn't plant them until later anyway! I am now fortunate enough to still have fresh tomatoes. Nature also heard my laments about not having planted any jalapeno peppers. Low and behold when I started scavenging around my very weedy and overgrown garden I found a volunteer plant. Yeah! My lazy composting paid off!
When I look back, while the gardening year did not go as expected, it wasn't a bust. I did get vegetables and herbs. But, my eternally optimistic nature is already planning how fantastic next year's garden will be....
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
I have been a vegetarian for over half my life and have not regretted or questioned it at all. Despite growing up in a very meat/hunting loving area, I knew by eleven that I would become one. I vividly remember going fishing and watching the horrible death of the fish I caught. It seemed so cruel and I could not get over the fact that something died just so I could eat it. It lost its life for me. At eleven, it was very overwhelming. It took a few more years to completely transition, but all these years later, I still strongly hold that belief.
I know many people don't have any qualms with animals dying for us, but I would ask you to also look at the environmental cost of eating meat.
"A 2006 United Nations report summarized the devastation caused by the meat industry by calling it "one of the top two or three most significant contributors to the most serious environmental problems, at every scale from local to global."*
Additionally, "According to Environmental Defense, if every American skipped one meal of chicken per week and substituted vegetarian foods instead, the carbon dioxide savings would be the same as taking more than a half-million cars off U.S. roads. "*
These are pretty dramatic statements, but ones that we should all consider when we decide how we are going to feed ourselves, family, and the planet. I encourage you all to incorporate a vegetarian meal at least once a week into your diet! You might be surprised on how much better you feel.
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
Saturday, September 20, 2008
I worked all afternoon on these eleven jars. I feel like for all the effort in picking, washing, chopping, and boiling, I should have at least five times this! I love canning, but sometimes I wish it didn't require so much work. I have to keep reminding myself that I will appreciate it in January!
Thursday, September 18, 2008
I am, though, still not convinced that it is bad to have a creed. Ogre had made the point that creeds were traditionally used to define people as believers or unbelievers - us and them. I see that. But, I sort of feel that we already do that on an informal level. While we claim to accept people where ever they are on their path - do we really make it easy for someone who is very ideologically different from us feel at home? I sometimes feel that we have an unspoken and not so subtle creed. Why not formalize it so it reflects the best of UU thought? Whether we like it or not, we do give off cues as to whether UU is the right place for a potential congregant. Of course we try to be inclusive as possible, but in reality, it is not the right place for everyone. Why not try to capture its spirit within a creed? Maybe it could be a wonderful unifying document.
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Monday, September 8, 2008
I would be very interested in hearing success stories you might have or experienced in making newcomers feel welcome and engaged.
Monday, September 1, 2008
Our middle child is very sensitive to loss. He takes them very personally and very hard. I have chosen not to tell him for a couple of days. Tomorrow is the first day of school and that alone will be tough enough for him. He has difficulty with change and I can't bear to add to his challenges. While he knows death is a part of life, he has always been acutely aware of its finality. So we will wait and have a ceremony for Chocolate Chip that honor's what he meant to our family and especially my son.
I would love to hear any traditions you might have for the loss of a pet.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
I have found one of the hardest parts of nurturing my children's spirituality is prayer. I did not grow up in a family where prayer was common. I am often very uncomfortable when asked to pray. I literally just don't know what to say. One of the topics most brought up in my congregation's parenting group is prayer and table graces. Evidently, I am not the only one in this predicament.
I wish this book would have been out even sooner! Blanchard has done a wonderful job of collecting a wide and diverse group of prayers. There is literally something for everyone and situation. She has collected Christian, Jewish, Unitarian Universalist, Islamic, Pagan, and Native American prayers. I found that there was also something for every comfort level - which is very important to me. One of my favorites is a beautiful Irish birthday blessing. It will now be included in all our birthday celebrations. I also appreciate that the are even prayers asking for personal forgiveness and for care of the larger world. While this book is geared to children, I found that the prayers are really for every age group. The illustrations beautifully compliment the blessings and enhance the simplicity, but poignancy of the prayers.
A Child's Book of Blessings and Prayers fits in right where my children are at now. In fact, my eight year old has already marked her favorite blessings. She especially liked one the friendship prayers. I really recommend this for every family. It has been very helpful and inspiring.
You can find the book at http://www.uuabookstore.org/
(I would love, though, for Blanchard to continue and adapt and lengthen this book for teenagers and young adults!)
Thursday, August 21, 2008
When I really think about it, to me faith is the belief that, in the end, the human spirit will prevail. That deep inside there is a spark of compassion in us. It may not always be evident, but I have to hope, have faith, that when most needed, people will rise to the occasion. I have to believe this, otherwise the the act of the truly despicable, will be overwhelming. I have to have faith that the majority of humanity cares. This is the only reality I know and what I, and others, make of it, makes all the difference. I choose to have faith in people.
What does faith mean to you?
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Gurnsey Lake, Wyoming - My mom spent many a summer swimming here.
Oregon Trail Ruts, WY (sorry for the sideways view!) - The kids loved climbing around these.
Register Cliff, WY - These are supposed to be markings left by people traveling on the Oregon Trail, but you will see markings up to the present!
So worth the visit. Also, much nicer then when I was there TWENTY years ago!
Bison herd at Custer Park. Totally impressive to us, not so to my relatives who own a bison ranch! The Ranger stated that they have at least one goring a year (so don't feed them!)
Badlands, SD. None of the pictures I have do this place justice. The landscape and history of this place is amazing.
Jack & Jill went down a hill..... Story Book Land at Wylie Park in Aberdeen South Dakota. A fantastic park with a lake, playground and zoo. This was the site of our family reunion. There are several pictures of me as a kid at this park.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Thursday, August 7, 2008
I would love, though, for the UUA to come out with summer camp curriculum. While we have a general format that my congregation follows, we are pretty much starting from scratch every year with the content. It would be very helpful to have some materials already available that we could modify as needed. Maybe this is available and I don't know about it, but I have not come across anything. I think it would be fascinating to nationally tie together youth camps so when youth come together at various conferences or events, they would have an even deeper base of common knowledge. I have seen several Christian camp curriculum packages and am impressed with the overall cohesiveness of them. Why do we not have this? How helpful would this be? Do any of you know of any efforts being made in this area? If not, I will certainly broach them with the suggestion.
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Here I am. Your typical, liberal Midwestern 35 year old. Pretty average in about everything. Yet, I have noticed through my life, that I attract certain things. In random order:
4. Finally, toads. I see them everywhere. Especially when I come home late at night - they like to jump out and give me a heart attack. I must give off some special pheromone that calls to them....
Sunday, August 3, 2008
Friday, August 1, 2008
Sunday, July 27, 2008
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
This also made me think of my own congregation and any efforts we might be making to help domestic abuse victims. I have noticed for a longtime that we do not have any hotline phone numbers/cards in the restrooms. This is one of the easiest ways to reach out while the victim can remain anonymous (if s/he wants to). Considering I am an MSW by training, it is a little ridiculous that I have not made an effort to put these out. I will now make it a much bigger priority. I do feel that our ministers are mostly open and responsive to any needs our congregants might have, but I am not sure how openly caring the congregation is. While I don't feel anyone would shun or judge a victim (far from that), I am not sure how to make ourselves more available so that person might come to us if they need help. Admitting something like abuse can be one of the hardest things a person may do, that is why I will try to work on ways our church can be considered a safe place. I would love to hear any ideas your congregations may have implemented and if you feel that they have been effective.
Monday, July 14, 2008
This is why I am so frustrated that they sold themselves to InBev. I have previously posted on how our culture constantly tries to reach for "more". Larger sales, more profit, bigger salaries, world domination.... Why can't you just be happy with what you have? AB wasn't losing money. Sure they aren't growing at an amazing rate, but why is that so necessary? Why isn't personal integrity more important? Why is there so much more value placed on constant growth? Constant growth is what is leading to our destruction of the environment, global warming, loss of jobs, loss of stability, loss of community networks. I could go on and on, but I am so disappointed in the Busch family and the AB shareholders for only looking out for themselves. I feel more and more that governments led by corporations are just around the corner.
Tonight (because it is only 9.00am here) I will have a nice Schlafly** brew, and toast all of those people who are going up against the big guys and keeping the craft of brewing alive.
*Actually homebrew tastes the best
** A local, independent brewery
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Sunday, July 6, 2008
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Two years ago, at GA in St. Louis, I heard David Korten speak. While he was speaking on his new book, as we left the lecture he handed out copies of his magazine yes!. Ever since then, I have really enjoyed it. The whole premise is to look at current topics and see what real, everyday people are doing on local and international scales. I love reading about all the positive things people from all sorts of backgrounds are doing to make the world, their lives, better. I find it inspiring. It gives me hope that there is a lot of humanity out there doing what they can to make today a better day. To me, yes! captures the spirit of Unitarian Universalism. *
Follow this link to their site: www.yesmagazine.org
*No, I was not asked to promote this magazine. I was just reading their latest issue and thought I would make sure you all know about it.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
After witnessing these two Mother Nature driven events (and reading about so many other natural tragedies), I have been really pondering our role within nature. Obviously, we have little control over natural occurrences, but that doesn't seem to keep us from trying. We build levees, live on fault lines, on the coast, on the plains; always trying to make our homes more secure - lulling ourselves into invincibility. But, who are we really kidding? Nature is bigger then us all. She doesn't care who we are, what we own, or what hardships we are currently facing. She is indiscriminate in her destruction. There is no reason to ask why. We are all vulnerable is some way. We are all at risk in losing everything. That is why we need to be there for our neighbor that has. We are all one step away from a flood, drought, tornado, earthquake, hurricane, avalanche, etc. We need to extend a hand when we are able.
ps - I truly believe that nature is a neutral entity that provides both perceived good and bad. It is humans that try to bend the forces of nature to their will and question it when it does not respond.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Monday, June 23, 2008
Sunday, June 22, 2008
I was asked to present the sermon I had given at District Assembly. I have to admit that it was kind of fun getting the opportunity to choose all the songs and readings that I wanted. I really enjoyed planning the service and was much less nervous giving the sermon than I was at DA. I had the usual "constructive" criticism of speaking more slowly, but overall it was well received.
As I have mentioned on previous posts, I still have mixed thoughts about summer services. I appreciated the opportunity to speak and have heard some great lay-lead services, but it is so hit and miss. I wonder if any of you have guidelines or instructional tools you use for helping people lead services. I also am still uncomfortable with the tradition of UU minister's taking the whole summer "off". I really feel for the stability, coherence, and growth of the congregation, the minister should have a visible presence.
I would love to hear any of your thoughts on summer or lay-lead services.
Friday, June 20, 2008
Friday, June 13, 2008
Second, it has come to my attention that there are quite of few people out there who believe baby carrots are actually baby carrots. Two good friends of mine recently looked at me in disbelief when I revealed the baby carrot secret. I hope I am not shattering any strong beloved beliefs, but baby carrots are actually "grown-up" carrots whittled down. Follow this link to their interesting beginnings as a way to be less wasteful to a marketing behemoth.
Have a great Friday the 13!
Thursday, June 5, 2008
Thursday, May 29, 2008
Thursday, May 22, 2008
Saturday, May 10, 2008
Renew Missouri has worked this fall to put an initiative on the ballot for November to mandate the use of renewable energy for the big electrical companies in Missouri.
The current system is only advisory and has no real teeth.
This initiative puts in fines if the companies don't comply.
It imposes limits on any increase in cost to consumers to 1% per year.
It also makes sure some of the power comes from solar and includes a rebate incentive to those who install solar power.
There is also incentives to produce the power in state vs out of state with increased credit for in state power.
This is a progressive piece of legislation that needs to be enacted to save our environment and not leave Missouri in the Dark Ages in the renewable energy marketplace.
Check out this website for more information and join in spreading the word. I guarratee that the money from the Utility companies will be overwhelming and need to be countered with our voices.
Wednesday, May 7, 2008
Sunday, May 4, 2008
Saturday, May 3, 2008
Church of the 21st Century: Shaping Our Religious Future
When I read the theme “Church of the 21st Century: Shaping our Religious Future”, my first reaction was, “well how in the world can a bunch of UUs ever come to an agreement on that?!”. There must be at least as many views as there are UUs. Probably even more since some of us have a hard time settling on just one option. I also had the reaction of “I don’t know – what do I want our church to look like?”. That second reaction is the one that caused my head to hurt a little. How many faiths have the option of actually choosing the path they, as thinking humans, want it to take? It suddenly took on a monumental feel. Then I thought, I don’t think I want this responsibility – this is way too much pressure. But, as noted by many people, “if not me, who?”
Who do I want to shape my churches religious future? I want to. I want to be able to shape it with my thoughts, feelings, and faith. I don’t want it to be shaped in response to others lead. I don’t want to be a reactionary church. It is up to us to decide the course of Unitarian Universalism that is why this question is so very important.
We need to do this. We are a faith that is floundering along. I say floundering because while we are here – there is very little coherency and growth. We have stayed at a pretty constant level of membership for years, despite the ever increasing population growth. It has been cited that in a typical church, eighty percent of new members drop out within the first year. This is appalling. When I became a Unitarian over seven years ago, I felt that I had found a home for my family and me. I wanted to tell all my friends and family the wonderful opportunities Unitarian Universalism had to offer. I felt, and I will use this word, evangelical about it. I wanted to go spread the good news. Good news with a little g and little n. I wanted people to realize that there is an alternative to born-again Christianity or stagnant religions mired in their own rigid traditions. I saw Unitarianism as a way for me to grow spiritually in an encouraging, safe place. My children were going to learn the vast diversity of religions and beliefs the world holds, while developing their own faith statements. Why wouldn’t I go shout it from a mountain?
Then the reality of our reserved nature set in. Sure we are willing to put ourselves out there for a variety of political, social, and environmental issues, but talking about our religion seems to shut us up. Why? I know many of us are very nervous to talk about our beliefs. Some of us come from backgrounds in which religion was so forced upon us, that we have no desire to inflict our views on anyone else. Many of us have not spent the time to really understand what Unitarian Universalism means and how that fits into our belief system. Some of us fear having to defend our beliefs when we aren’t really sure exactly what we do believe. I could go on and on, but, as a whole, we are reluctant to get out there and, to use a phrase from our GLBT folk, be loud, proud, and out.
This, though, is exactly what we need. We need to be loud, proud, and out. When I look to the future of Unitarian Universalism, I want to see a church that is noticed. One that when people look at it say, “this is a home for me.” One that takes a stand on issues and is referred to in the media as a force to be reckoned with. I want a church that isn’t afraid to talk about itself and reaches out to all those in the community. We have rightly been called a thinking religion, but now it is really time to walk the walk. We need to reach out from the comfort of our living rooms and be heard.
How many of you are tired of hearing the religious right dominate US culture? How many of you are tired of religious liberals being maligned in the press? We have no one to blame but ourselves. We need to take control of what is being said and lead by example. I truly believe that we have so much to offer, but are continually misrepresented. When I look to the 21st century, I want to be part of a religion that is proud of its diversity, strength, and freedom. I don’t want to be part of one that sits back and waits for people to come to it. I don’t want to be a fringe group. We are, at heart, a group of people that has so much to offer and we are wasting our talents by working behind the scenes and not being noticed for all the amazing work we do.
This begs the questions: How are we going to get there? How are we going to shape this religious future?
I believe that we need to start within the home. To be able to proudly and loudly speak about Unitarian Universalism, we need to have a decent understanding of the religion. Ours is not an easy religion. We do not draw from one source. We are not hierarchical, with someone telling us what to believe. Ours is a faith that is unique to you as it is to me. Because of this, we have to do a little more leg work. It is up to each of us to develop our own personal beliefs. While we draw on many sources and principles, in the end, each of us has the responsibility to decide what is meaningful to us. To some, this may be extraordinarily challenging, but to be a religion worth shouting about – we need to be comfortable in speaking about our personal beliefs and how Unitarian Universalism fits in and supports them. We need to take the time and do this spiritual homework. We also need to be brave enough to share it with our family and friends.
Second, we need to more fully embrace our children, youth, and young adult programming. I hear over and over again that one of the main reasons people begin to attend Unitarian churches is now that they have children, they want them to grow up in an open church community. I have heard many people note how wonderful our religious education programs are. I agree with this. What I feel we are lacking, though, is a way to continually engage all our youth as they graduate from the elementary years through college and beyond. How many families have let our children decide to quit attending services when they reach a certain age? How many college kids don’t even bother thinking of attending services through their university years? Or how many children, after graduating high school see no real value in continuing to attend services when they are on their own? We lose so many valuable members in high school. If they do return, it isn’t until they have started their own families. That is a lot of talent, enthusiasm, and diversity lost. As congregations, we need to closely examine how we value our youth and how we engage them in all aspects of church life. I would love to see the UUA follow suite and reestablish its commitment to the Continental UU Young Adult Network (C*UUYAN). As parents and friends, we need to help our children feel valued by the church and actively encourage them to continue attending and participating, even after they leave home. Youth are invaluable in strengthening and enriching our faith. They need to be included in the life and planning of the church. They are the ones that will grow UU into the next century.
Finally, we need to get out there and get noticed. We need to become comfortable promoting ourselves. We have a lot to offer the world and we need to not be shy in shouting it. There are so many avenues and ways for us to get our name out there; we need to take advantage of them. I am not just talking about the UUA’s new marketing campaign. I am speaking within our communities we need to take active roles in the name of Unitarian Universalism. We need to be part of the conservations in what will make our communities successful. I would love to see us be the ones that are called when the news needs a broader perspective. Obviously, not everyone is a religious conservative. We have just as much right to be heard and understood. Our opinions should matter just as equally. We can not sit on the side lines and let other people decide how we will be portrayed and whether or not we will be called. Many of us are trying individually or within other groups, but what we need is a committed effort by the faith, our church. Only then will people begin to really understand Unitarian Universalism and what it has to offer the even wider community. That is what I would like to see as our religious future. I would like to see our religious future as being dynamic, exciting, diverse and relevant. I want the world to see Unitarianism not as a fringe liberal religion, but as one where we all are accepted into a place that values everyone, encourages everyone to spiritually grow, and works for the betterment of the world, regardless of who is in it. One that is active and engaged for them and the community.
I challenge each of you to, as Gandhi so well said “you must be the change you want to see in the world.” Now is the time for you to step up and participate in the future of Unitarian Universalism. Only through your grass roots work will the faith continue to grow and survive. We need to be the leaders we imagine. I really believe that through each of our efforts to be loud, proud, and out will we share the good news of Unitarian Universalism and be a force to be reckoned with.
Monday, April 28, 2008
Sunday, April 27, 2008
Friday, April 25, 2008
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
These would be mine for this year:
1. Get back to being more committed to veganism. I have been a vegetarian for over 17 years, but keep slipping when I try to be vegan. So much of the Earth's resources would be saved if people ate more ethically.
2. Eat more local and less packaged food. This will be a little more challenging because, while I love to bake, I am not big on cooking.
3. Line dry my clothes more often. Now that summer is coming, there really is no excuse.
4. Be prudent with the air conditioning. This is hard - I grew up in the North and can not get used to these hot Missouri summers.
5. Try to minimize plastic use to when there is absolutely no alternative.
Alright, this is enough for this year. I already try to recycle as much as possible and minimize travel. As it is, this will be quite a challenge for me. I would love to hear any "resolutions" you might all make for this Earth Day!
Saturday, April 12, 2008
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
In case anyone from the judging committee is reading this - THANK YOU for giving me this opportunity!
*I am still slightly worried that they actually chose someone else and they just sent me the confirmation as a mistake. Obviously I will immediately delete this post if that is the case!