Communication: from the Latin communicare: make common to many, share, impart.
Beloveds, how are YOUR communications in the Boulder Valley UU Fellowship? With others? Within your own life? Do you have a sense that you know what is going on within the Fellowship? Do you have a sense that you are connected – to the extent you want to be connected? With enough information to make the right decisions about your congregational life?
I will confess to you that I struggle mightily with e-mail communications. E-mail is such a tool of good work, such a facilitator of communication – and yet, I simply cannot keep up. At the end of my BVUUF e-mail signature, I allude to it: “If I haven’t responded to your e-mail, please do feel free to text or call: 720.290.5715” And, this is because I DO miss important e-mails, and I don’t want to. Please know that you can call or text me.
I think of communication so much in words (oh, how we UUs love our words!), but also we know that so much communication is non-verbal. How comfortable are you with your own non-verbal communication style? Do you feel effective communicating with others? Do you feel heard?
“They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel.” –Carl W. Beuchner
Our Communications Committee is being re-established, and will meet this month. What a flow of information is passed around in our congregation! Your ministers, your leadership, are constantly thinking of the best way to get information to you, in the right way, the right time, the right format … without overburdening you with too much (as is the way of our world these days).
I’ve just counted 19 communication vehicles here at the Fellowship – and that’s just for INTERNAL communications! That doesn’t count the community outreach, traditional and social media that could be used. How many ways – think right now – how many ways to you receive information here at the Fellowship? Do you ever wonder how you missed hearing about something important? (join the club, friend … it happens to me, too)
I find my Buddhist practice of non-attachment very helpful in my love/hate relationship with technology and information. I will miss things. I can’t know it all, and can’t keep up with it all. There is some peace in simply accepting those facts.
And, at the same, as your Assistant Minister, I want communication to be easy and simple. And, best if it is real-time, and face to face.
One of my favorite Sunday morning readings in our gray hymnal, #435, is by the Rev. KathleenMcTigue:
We come together this morning to remind one another
To rest for a moment on the forming edge of our lives,
To resist the headlong tumble into the next moment,
Until we claim for ourselves
Awareness and gratitude,
Taking the time to look into one another’s faces
And see there communion:
The reflection of our own eyes.
This house of laughter and silence, memory and hope,
Is hallowed by our presence together.
“Communion: the reflection of our own eyes” in another’s face. There it is. The best communication. Making common to many the human experience of connection.
May you find welcome this month.
May you offer welcome this month.
May you find your communications courageous and filled with love.
May you find connection with those you love, those you know, and those you don’t know yet.