As Unitarian Universalists, we see our justice work as living out our values into the world. We covenant that "service is our prayer." What might it look like to create a justice spiritual practice?
In sermons and newsletters we often see references to our Unitarian Universalist "faith tradition” and some UU’s end their letters and emails with the words “In faith.” But faith in what? This sermon will be a summation of Bill’s reflections on that question and along the way he will introduce Roy G. Biv, whom he first encountered as a teacher in East Shore's RE program.
Bias is an inescapable part of the human experience, but what we do with, and how we react to our biases is very much in our control. While our natural instinct may be to put things into categories and boxes , there is a space that can enrich our interactions with everyone around us, the space beyond boxes. This Sunday, please join us as our BCT facilitator, Amanda Schuber, talks about the ways that identity and bias impact our relationships with each other and the wider world.
Let me begin this year by reminding everyone that it will be my last among you and that Carol and I will be leaving come June. Which is a good thing. New wine is not to be poured into old wineskins, else the new wine will burst them and ruin the whole project. New wine must be put into new receptacles. Citations from Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, Stephen Levine, Forrest Church, and more.
“A Thousand Names for Joy” is a book commended to me by church member Lassie Jordan. Lassie also made the top bid at last year’s auction, gave me a copy, and asked me to preach on author Byron Katie’s guidebook for healthy, wholesome living. Come for a synopsis and invitation to everyday spiritual practice.
Many congregations are adopting an 8th Principle of Unitarian Universalism, which calls us to anti-racism, the beloved community, and accountability. What if there was a 9th Principle? What still needs to be said? What is missing from who we say we are, and how can we make that real?
The Rev. Dr. Matthew Johnson is the Senior Minister of the Unitarian Universalist Church, Rockford, IL, where he has served since 2008. He spent his teenage years at East Shore (you know his mom, Wenda Collins), before attending Whitman College, Meadville Lombard Theological School and Iliff School of Theology. He is the author of Newborn Bards: A Theology of Preaching for Unitarian Universalists.