From the Board: December 2018

The opposite of knowledge…isn’t always ignorance. It can be wonder. Or mystery. Possibility. And in my life, I’ve found it’s the things I don’t know that have lifted me up and pushed me forwards, much more than the things I do know.” — Pico Iyer

I found Pico’s description of wonder and mystery to be insightful as I thought about the UUCM mission:   In a spirit of wonder and with courageous love, we connect, grow, and act.

I was also struck by the connection to the work of the Sacred Solidarity Network (SSN) in which UUCM is participating.  SSN is a cohort of congregations meeting for an ongoing cycle of action and learning. By engaging in a planned curriculum, groups come away with a customizable racial justice toolkit. Rev. Terri Burnor is a member of the SSN coordinating team.

One of SSN’s plans is to encourage us to realize that there is not just one right way.  “We need to try new things and assess how they work- moving from isolation to a network….” Continue reading →

From the Board: November 2018

What is memory? What would we be without it?

All my experiences, all I have practiced and learned, all my conversations and connections, all my creations and catastrophes, collected in these neural networks that constitute me. I am memory, my personal history. Some memories are encoded in my muscles; dance steps, piano scales and guitar picking rhythmic  patterns. Some are olfactory; sorghum and black walnuts at great-grandmother’s house. Many are auditory; lyrics from mother’s hymns, grandpa’s ditties, adolescent love songs and funky folk songs. So many of my memories are collections of words from teachers;  aphorisms, poetry, philosophy, chemistry, physics, math, physiology, anatomy, the mementos from my long strange trip. I have been privileged to witness births and deaths, weddings and divorces, joyful reunions and devastating losses all stirred into this jambalaya I call my life so far. Continue reading →

From the Board: October 2018

Sanctuary – safety, security, comfort, refuge from the turbulence in our lives. Churches are one of the places that humans, through the ages, have sought sanctuary.  They can offer hope, acceptance and love to those who enter them.  When we feel safe and accepted, we can begin to feel empowered to start looking outside our place of sanctuary and towards the challenges in the greater world.

The Unitarian Universalist Church of Minnetonka is one of those places I seek sanctuary in my life. I come here to get recharged and revitalized each week. Not only do I find comfort and refuge from the turbulence in my life, it has given me the strength and knowledge to address the injustices I see in the world. To be truthful, it can be very exhausting to always confront injustice when I encounter it, so I choose my battles.

It’s important for each of us to reflect on how well we are creating a sanctuary that invites others in, because if we do that well think of what we as a community can do outside our walls.

Here at UUCM we are fortunate to have a team, or “Troika” as they like to refer to themselves for a short time.  The Reverend Meg Riley, Reverend Terri Burnor and Arif Mamdani each are bringing skills to help us together create the Beloved Community we are longing for.  They will challenge us. They will teach us. They will enlighten us. They will help us together create that sense of sanctuary where others are welcomed in and where we feel empowered to bring our voices out into the world.

Mike Elliott
Board of Trustees