April 8, 2020
This week’s message comes to you on the first day of the Jewish holiday of Passover and during the Christian Holy Week. In both traditions, it is a time of looking suffering squarely in the eye, and reaping lessons from life’s hardest moments. In both stories, a whole group of people find salvation — a return to more wholeness from a place of hardship and brokenness. To be clear, I am NOT one who believes in redemptive suffering — that is, that we suffer SO that we can be brought back to wholeness. Instead, I believe that no one can escape challenge and suffering in life. And in the midst of that, we can ask “What can I learn here? Can this moment of challenge become an initiation for some new way of being?”
In the northern hemisphere, Easter and Passover both come during Spring — a time when the Earth wakes up from the dead of winter. This week, as we all remain hunkered down at home for at least the next three weeks, I invite you to look for signs of renewal. What places of brokenness or suffering are showing glimpses of restoration? Of new growth? Start with the low hanging fruits — nature — consider taking pictures of daffodils, or studying a bud on a tree, or looking for the return of insects. As you progress in this practice, focus on signs of renewal, signs of hope, in our world. Where is kindness overcoming the bleak trajectory of the coronavirus? Finally, look for renewal in your relationships – long time friends you’ve reconnected with, family rituals renewed, or old hurts forgiven. What can you initiate in this time of challenge that might bring new beautiful things into your own life?
Please click to view A Message from UUA President Rev. Susan Frederick-Gray, which offers love and good wishes to all Unitarian Universalists ministering to one another in these difficult times.
Connecting via Zoom
We understand finding one’s way into a “Zoom Room” can be challenging and we are trying to minimize the confusion.
All Fellowship Sunday Services can be found at: https://uuma.zoom.us/j/993783355
or call in at: 1-346-248-7799 Meeting ID: 993 783 355
There is also a link on the home page of the Fellowship website.
Meetings with me will also be on this same Zoom link.
All School of the Spirit events can be found at: https://zoom.us/j/552956886
Zoom links for any Fellowship meetings will be made available on our calendar, found here: Fellowship google calendar.
Sunday Services on Zoom are our primary way to gather the whole community together. They will continue to be held at 12:30 p.m., with School of the Spirit Zoom class at 11:45 a.m.
For the coming weeks, we will ground ourselves in the Five Jagged Rocks of Unitarian Universalism. Each Sunday, we will focus on one aspect of our theology and how it can provide strongholds during these uncertain times. Here are our upcoming services:
April 12: Salvation in This Life: EASTER Reinterpreted Rev. Lydia and Karin Griglak, Service Associate
April 19: All Souls are Sacred and Worthy Eric Williams and Irene Faivre, Service Associates
April 26: Truth Continues to be Revealed Rev. Lydia and Irene Faivre, Service Associate
Each week, I’ll open my Zoom Room for anyone who wants to hang out. (Zoom office hours!) Here’s my office hours schedule for the next couple of weeks:
- Thurs. April 9, from 11:00 a.m. to 12 noon
- Tues. April 14 , from 2:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
- Thurs. April 16, from 10:30 a.m. to 12 noon
- Wed. April 22, from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Our building is nearly complete, but we are still in a time of required physical distancing. The Fellowship has developed protocols for who can be in the building, as well as the spacing of people there. Please schedule the time you’d like to be in the building through our calendar. The office can put you in touch with Karen Axe, who is available to talk over specific protocols for you (in addition to basic safety steps) to consider depending upon what you are doing at the building. Please do consider whether what you are doing is ‘essential’ during this time, or if it can wait until the physical distancing requirements are lifted. To schedule your activity at the Fellowship on the calendar, you can submit a request to update the Fellowship Calendar with your event; you can also find the form at the top of the Fellowship Forms page. The calendar will reflect “1241 Ceres Drive” as the location for your visit. Thank you; this helps keep all of us safe, perhaps especially those among us who need to visit the Fellowship and prefer to do it when no one else is there.
The Conversation Project and Covid-19
This week, a dear family friend, my “Uncle Perry” passed away. My dad met Perry Zevin as a medical school resident in the early 1960’s. Without any close relatives in this country, my parents’ friends, Uncle Perry and Aunt Janet, became that family — spending every Thanksgiving with us for over 20 years, vacationing together, and spending many hours at their backyard pool. Perry was ninety years old, and in frail health. While he did not die from the coronavirus, the impact of the coronavirus meant that Aunt Janet and their three children were not able to be with him in the last weeks of his life.
The many impacts of this pandemic are hard to take in, and can feel overwhelming. But spending some time thinking about your own needs and wishes should you become ill can be empowering. I share this video from The Conversation Project with you about what to think about in terms of end of life wishes in this unprecedented time we are in.
This Sunday — Your dollars multiply like bunnies!
As we wrap up our 2020-21 pledge drive, I’m delighted to announce that one of our generous donors has offered a dollar for dollar matching gift for any new donations toward the 2020-21 pledge. In addition to sharing our Easter offering with the Boulder County AIDS Project (BCAP), we will also have a second offering this Sunday towards this matching gift. We know that in these uncertain times, not all of you will be able to either increase your pledge (preferred) or make a one-time gift. But for those who can, your ongoing generosity helps the Fellowship continue to provide spiritual sustenance and community in the midst of the challenges of our times. You can also consider donating all or part of your stimulus check to the Fellowship if it is not required for your own needs. Gifts for this match must be made by Friday, April 17.
Poetry Night: Second Thursdays in April, May and June. Join Rev. Lydia on Thursday, April 9th from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. for a contemplative evening of sharing using poetry. Rev. Lydia will provide a poem for us to dive into. There will be time for personal journaling or drawing, followed by small group sharing. (These events used to be called “Deepening the Conversation,” and are based on the work of Parker Palmer).