My colleague Galen Guengerich, the esteemed Senior Minister of All Souls Unitarian Church in New York, shared this quote recently in one of his daily meditations:
“One must live in the middle of contradiction because if all contradictions were eliminated at once life would collapse. There are simply no answers to some of the great pressing questions. You continue to live them out, making your life a worthy expression of a leaning into the light.” ~ (Barry Lopez, b. 1945)
In times such as these I am more aware than ever of the contradictions we live within. Our is wealthy country, indeed a wealthy community, in the midst of pressing social needs; a shortfall in the state budget that will cause many social programs to be eliminated, our neighbors in Bridgeport who struggle to educate their children, whilst our children are some of the most educated in the country, and a political rhetoric which seems to be electrified on the margins of fear on one side and hope on the other. I agree with Barry Lopez that there are no simple answers to the pressing questions that living in such paradox presents
And yet, there are answers in how we live with those contradictions in our daily lives. For all the bad news in the world, there is some good news and we, in our own small way, are a part of that news. Consider the many new immigrant families we have helped to settle, consider the children at Beardsley school who have more resources now than they would have without us, consider the emerging rights of transgender people upheld by the General Attorney of the United States, a cause we as Unitarian Universalists have long championed.
We can’t resolve the contradictions we live with but we can respond to the challenges of life with integrity, hard work and hope And as the philosopher Paul Hawken observes, we can be part of the “Blessed Unrest” that stirs humanity to deeds of daring rectitude and generosity. http://www.blessedunrest.com/
This is our work as a congregation for now and always As we enjoy our summer sojourns please imagine what part you and your loved ones could play as we “lean into the light”. This summer bring a little vial of water back from your journeys, real or psychic, to share in our water communion service at Compo Beach on Labor Day Sunday
I am so proud to serve you all, and prouder still of the world we will alight, one brave light at a time.
With Grace and Grit, Rev. John