Minister’s Letter

Minister’s Letter

From the Minister

I’m in the midst of an annual June ritual I have missed only once since 1975–Ministry Days of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association followed by the General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association where delegates from congregations meet for business, inspiration, celebration, and a general renewal of ties. I readily admit to being a “GA Junkie” who thoroughly enjoys the plenary business sessions (more than 12 hours this year), the ceremonial elements such as the Opening Celebration and the Service…

From the Minister

Every morning at 4 a.m. “First Light Meditation” hits my e-mail inbox from Rev. Dr. Galen Guengerich, senior minister of the Unitarian Church of All Souls in New York City. He suggests that those subscribing read the piece through at least two times and think about it as they start the day. I often find the piece helpful in spiritually centering my start to the day. Sometimes it is a few lines long and on occasion as long as the…

From the Minister

Along with a number of others from our congregation, I attended the ICARE Celebration via Zoom on Monday evening. It was inspiring to hear an update on current projects in our area. The civil citations project for youth has saved many young people from debilitating criminal records while requiring accountability. Sheriff Williams and States Attorney Nelson are committed to further development of an adult civil citations program as well as working at developing an intervention team to deal with mental…

Minister’s Letter

At the 2017 UUA General Assembly in New Orleans delegates called for the establishment of an Article II Study Commission to suggest any changes deemed necessary in our association’s Purposes and Principles which enunciate to ourselves and to the world the traditions we have come from and the core values we hold dear and promote. I have been very much inspired by and committed to them since their approval by the General Assembly in 1985. There has been only one…

From the Minister

As part of my 14-year ministry as senior minister at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Shelter Rock (Long Island), I served on our Veatch Board of Governors which made annual grants totalling approximately $12 million to social justice organizations throughout the country. One segment of grant making important to us was faith-based community organizations which bring people together across racial, religious, and socioeconomic lines to pursue social justice in their communities. From reviewing grant proposals, taking part in site visits…

From the Minister

Last Sunday I ended my sermon encouraging participation in our upcoming capital campaign with a quote from the late Rev. Dr. John B. Wolf, for 35 years senior minister of All Souls Unitarian Church in Tulsa. At the virtual coffee hour after the service I agreed to share it again in the newsletter. So here it is. I share a more complete rendition I have found of the quote and believe it still reads well though it was written decades…

From the Minister

The issue of “truth” has become a deeply significant issue in our country during the Trump presidency and its aftermath.  I take counsel from Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962) in his poem “Advice to Pilgrims.”  I share them with you not as being the definitive word on the subject but as containing some helpful suggestions.  Most importantly I suggest that you regularly attempt to catch your intuition “clean and stark naked.” Advice to Pilgrims That our senses lie and our minds trick…

From the Minister

We are coming up to the anniversary of the most emotionally challenging year in my life. Perhaps it has been so in your life as well. The challenge of the worst pandemic in a century together with a tragically inept federal response, persistent presidential prevarication across the board until January 20, concern for personal safety and that  of family and friends, police violence against minorities, lack of sufficient response to Russian assaults upon us, continued fraying of relationships with our European allies, unrest…

From the Minister

I was pleased with the good-sized group which joined me for “Unitarian Universalism—Then and Now” on Sunday afternoon, February 7. The intent of the presentation was to show how our seven core principles have drawn on mystical traditions, humanist teachings, Judaism, Christianity, prophetic traditions, world religions, and nature-based religions to create current Unitarian Universalism. The genius of our faith has been its enrichment by several traditions in support of the common values to which we are committed.  I would like…

From the Minister

Last fall I delivered a sermon on “What About God” in response to suggestions made in the meet the minister sessions.   A request was made for a written copy of the sermon which I did not have readily available but I did send on a copy of a paper entitled “God and Evil” which covers the same ground.  The suggestion was made that I distribute it through our newsletter and Facebook page which I am happy to do.You can download by clicking…