Life, Death and Love
I attended the Lutheran Confirmation of my brother’s 13-year-old triplets recently. As they and their group of middle school peers recited the Apostle’s Creed (and as I perused Hallmark’s confirmation card section), I noticed how much of the focus is on beliefs rather than values or actions. While it was a beautiful and meaningful experience for them, it renewed my appreciation of our Unitarian Universalist Coming of Age process where we challenge our youth to discern their own values and beliefs rather than asking them to recite creeds.
At the same time, I am also poignantly aware of the comfort found in such belief systems. As my brother approaches the final stages of his five year battle with liver cancer, I’ve been pondering thoughts of death more than usual lately.
I remember how comforting it was to believe that I knew exactly what would happen to me after I died. While I haven’t held those beliefs since I was in high school, at the time I found great peace in that understanding of how I thought things worked.
Today I would have to admit that I have no idea what happens after we die. Though I have some definite thoughts and ideas about this, I cannot say I am certain about any of it. The best I can do is surrender to the Mystery of the unknown. Sometimes that feels scary; especially as I grapple with my brother’s mortality and my own arrival in mid life.
As much as I ponder this, without any definitive conclusions, what feels most true for me is that the one thing that truly remains after we die is the love we share while we are here.
As we transition to our summer schedule at church, may each of you find time for rest and renewal this summer. May you find spiritual practices that nourish your soul and may you discover new ways to share your love each day.
Blessed Be, Diane Melvin, Religious Education Director
The high school youth have planned and are leading this engaging service. We will honor the transitions of our incoming freshman bridging up and our seniors bridging out with ritual and ceremony.
Each of our six seniors have been invited to speak a bit about their experiences growing up at this church. Here are the questions I asked them to address: What has growing up a UU at People’s Church meant to you? What have you most valued about your time in RE and in this community? How has this community helped to shape and form you and your values and beliefs? How will you take what you have learned out into the world with you?
Congratulations to our graduating seniors: Della Steenstra, Juli Ginn, Robert Webster, Lucy Cutler, Joe Friedel and Quincy Bullmer!
SUMMER RELIGIOUS EDUCATION
Our summer Sunday RE program begins on June 19 with activities for kids entering kindergarten to those entering eighth grade. Led by Mackenzie Hatfield and Mary Kate Webster, children will have fun with stories, crafts, games, and creative movement. This year, our activities will be based on books by Dr. Seuss, tying in the themes to our seven UU Principles. Visiting grandchildren are welcome, too. Nursery care is provided for younger children.
Harry and UU
Next year our 4th-12 graders will be engaging in an exciting new curriculum based on Harry Potter and focused on social justice. Religious education teachers are needed to help guide our children and youth through this experience. Please let Diane Melvin know if you are interested in helping in RE at email@example.com.