Each month, a member of the board will share a reflection on the Soul Matters monthly theme. The theme for May is Nurturing Beauty. This month’s post is offered by Janna Sperry Sundby.
“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” –Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
Reviewing this quote made me pause. I recently and unexpectantly lost a dear friend. He was beautiful and I did not know he was suffering.
He was a talented designer, developer, film maker, guitarist, singer, a joyous friend, a good cook, and great father. I hired him to create my first website back in 2000. He was thoughtful in helping me understand the process and I subsequently hired him to work with on websites for my clients. He could be loud, loved to use foul language, and loved his home country of Madrid Spain. Continue reading →
Fred Hulting, Board President
The UUA is currently reimagining Article II of its By-Laws. This is the article that contains the formal statement of our seven UU principles. As part of this effort, the Article II Commission is seeking to include stronger language on anti-racism and anti-oppression. UUCM has an opportunity to engage and influence this work, consistent with our stated commitment to anti-racism and the actions that have been led by our Racial Justice Team. Continue reading →
Each month, a member of the board will share a reflection on the Soul Matters monthly theme and the state of the church. The theme for April is Awakening. This month’s post is offered by Jeff Adrian.
The movie “Dad” from 1989 stars Jack Lemmon as a retired man who has lived a very monotonous life as a factory worker raising a family. There’s a much more complicated back story, but his son (played by Ted Danson) has to come home to take care of him when Mom (Olympia Dukakis) has to be in the hospital. Through some life changes and a diagnosis of cancer, Dad decides to start living life. The specific line I remember him saying to his wife, “You know what I realized? We don’t speak Japanese!” And then he proceeding to have them learn Japanese. It’s a very good movie.
This bit from the movie is my “awakening” moment to stick my head up from the busyness and routines of daily life, to take a look around and enjoy things. Otherwise life will just pass me by. Continue reading →
Each month, a member of the board will share a reflection on the Soul Matters monthly theme and the state of the church. The theme for March is Renewing Faith. This month’s post is offered by Brian Zais.
I have a not-entirely-undeserved reputation for being long winded. My work colleagues have both complained (“Just get to the point, Brian!”) and praised (“I know when I read it, I’ll get all of the information I need”) the length of my e-mails. I tend to follow the Aaron Sorkin school of expression: why use 10 words when 25 will do? Using too few words just leaves the opportunity to be misunderstood.
I think this is common for UUs. We’re a thinking church, after all, a group that doesn’t just follow some mindless rote dogma thrust upon us by someone over in southern Europe. We get to think for ourselves! And, boy, are we into nuance. We live in complicated times. While polarizing sound bites may be the norm of our political world, we thinkers know that issues aren’t black and white. We need to understand and describe the context of the situation, the ramifications, and the benefits and drawbacks of our thoughts and actions. Continue reading →
Fred Hulting, Board President
During November, December, and January, the Board held a series of open listening sessions that were attended by 45 members and friends of the congregation. The purpose of these sessions was to gather input that will be used by the Board, Council, and Staff as they plan programs and initiatives over the next couple of years.
What did we hear at these sessions? We heard that there is tremendous support for the church and its current direction. You talked about the strength you draw from our community. You praised the social justice work of the church and expressed a desire to see it make even more of an impact in the western suburbs. And you said that you were proud of our church values and mission, and that you want us to spread the word and make UUCM more visible in the surrounding community. Continue reading →