The spiritual theme we’ll be reflecting on together this month is Mystery. (Another thing I look forward to is whatever theme is designated for December — I have loved them all!). Mystery in a spiritual and religious context for me is a little different than a science context — I think of mystery as an appreciation for what we do not, and sometimes cannot, know or understand. There can be something deeply beautiful and vital to our humanity in that.
Category: Minister Posts
The spiritual theme for November is Generosity. It seems like generosity is often discussed in the frame of “time, talent, and/or treasure,” which is a helpful way to think about it. But generosity is also about time in the sense of what and who came before us and what and who will follow. That is, the generosity of our ancestors and the generosity we will leave as ancestors.
This month, our congregation will be reflecting on the theme of Heritage. We’ll be celebrating our Water Ceremony and Ingathering, a long-standing tradition in our faith. We are so fortunate to have Lynn Whitelaw coming to share about the history of the Inness paintings. We will also be kicking off our stewardship drive while thinking about the many people who have made this congregation possible.
Our spiritual theme for September is Welcome. Every year when the church’s program year begins again, the energy shifts. This year is no different, although the energy is different. On the other side of sinkholes and the worst parts of the pandemic, this congregation is digging into who it is and what it loves. It’s a kind of blossoming and a delight to witness.
August 1 begins our fourth year together in ministry. It’s wild to think about all that has happened in these last three years, both within the congregation and in the wider world. I’ve spent lots of time resting and cross-stitching. I have also been reading. Here are my thoughts this month.
As always, General Assembly was a lot of hard work, with the joy of being together and the challenges of being together. Because I was working it, I didn’t get to enjoy all of the workshops and events, but the ones I was able to be present for were wonderful. I am looking forward to sharing some parts of it with you when I return! There’s one workshop I’d love for you to see, and there’s the time with author Brian Broome (whose memoir, Punch Me Up to the Gods, our Rainbow Welcome Circle has chosen as a common read), and this year’s Berry Street lecture is a must-watch for those of us in Florida.
The spiritual theme for May is creativity, and I’ve been joking about the irony of that after having planned services for nine months already, the creativity well is getting a little dry over here! A colleague suggested leaning into what I do when creativity starts to feel low, and I have been trying to do this.
The spiritual theme for June is delight, and I notice with this theme something I have noticed many times before since moving to Florida. It is harder to choose hymns here than it was in NE Ohio — some hymns refer to the turning of the seasons. Winter and Christmas hymns seem so odd in a place where there is no snow. Florida is so full of color year-round that its delight is in some ways less striking than it would be elsewhere.
Where does resistance show up in your life? In your relationships? In your relationships and understanding of church? How do you honor resistance or know when it needs to be overcome? What purpose and meaning does resistance have for you in your daily living? We’ll be digging into these and other questions this month in worship. Join us!
While many would say vulnerability is a state, I would say that it’s a practice and even a value. Vulnerability is about tenderness and letting one’s truest self be witnessed, even held, by another. This month’s theme touches on the concept of vulnerability.