Dear ones,

I’ve been immersed in the warmth of our returning community these late summer Sundays that we’ve been sharing together.  It’s been so good to see you all as we find our way back into the rhythms of walking together along our life journeys and amidst our yearnings for connection and wholeness in such uncertain times.

I’m sure it’s due to this sharing in our abundance together that I’ve been especially pained as the news emerged these last weeks of the devastation in untold numbers of communities from storms of unmatched destruction and violence. Then this week, without a moment to catch our breath, there came the news of the most destructive mass shooting in recent national history in a gathered community of people who came together in Las Vegas in their love of music. Statistics of lives, livelihoods, and homes lost are hard to fathom, especially in extremes, but the stories of people, their loved ones, and their communities of belonging touch our hearts and our own vulnerability directly.

We need this spiritual community to hold us and the heartbreak of this time in love and in active hope. At every age, we have much to learn about what it means to live fully human lives.  Where there is weariness, may we inspire persistence. Where there is fear, we’ll reach out in compassion, and learn to keep reaching out. Where there is confusion, we’ll seek understanding. Where there is harm, we’ll stand with those in need. This is how our Unitarian Universalist faith calls us forward to live courageously in love.

One of the many gifts of an intergenerational religious community covenanted in love is the long view it cultivates.  Our forbearers proclaimed that the moral arc of the universe is long, but it bends towards justice. We look back in gratitude to those who have gone before us, charting the way forward through their time. And now, in our time, through our lives and our children’s lives we walk towards the future, the beloved community we long to see, and let that horizon call us forward.

May we journey well together,

Rev. Frances