(Turn and face the strain) Ch-ch-Changes


My minster submitted her resignation on Sunday. There were tears from the pulpit. There were tears everywhere. Even the ugly cry! And no tissues any freeken-where as she never, ever let us put Kleenex out even when she knew people would cry, like for the Dead of the Dead service, ( a no brainier right?) cuz she did not want to make people feel like they have to cry.

One of my questions for the new minister is what their stance is on Kleenex in the pews…..but I digress.

I have been a member of 4 Unitarian Universalist churches and in all 4, the ministers have left for a variety of reasons. The first 3 times I was offended and sad and pissed off! But now, I get it. I understand, that this is what happens in the Unitarian Universalist Faith. Ah, change…it is great! Oh, and it sucks and it is scary as shit. I do not think I know a whole lots people, who, ya know, LOVE CHANGE. That would not be me. But it happens, it must happen. In a faith tradition that challenges us to learn and grow, there must be change.

The fourth principle speaks to this:
A free and responsible search for truth and meaning.

In every UU church I have been a part of the minister has left after about 10 years, (one left after 4 or 5) and that seems to be the norm. The thing is….for UU’s our churches and parishes are not about the minister. They are about the congregations, the people. That is why so many of our congregations are lay led. Unlike the big evangelical mega churches we are known by our works not our ministers.

And that my friends is a good thing. It is what makes us awesome. It is going to be sad, we will cry and feel angry and maybe even abandoned. One of my girl friends said today that she felt like Rev. D broke up with us.“’it is not you…its me….” we all laughed, it was funny! That’s okay to feel all the feelings that will rise up. Feelings are not right or wrong, they just are. Together, we can and will get though this. We will hold each other in love and light and hold Rev. D there also. Rev. D.will be fine. She will be great. And so will we.
Do you know why?

Because we are greater then the sum of our parts. Period.

If we do not sacrifice our comfort, then we become complacent. We are a brave group, it is in the DNA of our congregation! Hells bells, we built a new church during the depression. We built a new wing during the worst economic crises since the depression. We are brave and courageous and strong and forward looking, forward thinking and we say YES TO LIFE.

In the 4 times I have been a part of a church that goes though the process of searching for a new called minister, 3 have thrived. We are going to grow in ways have never even imagined. Growing has some pain that comes with it, but together we will get though that also. What I mean is, that Rev. D is giving us a huge gift. A generous gift. And I am looking forward to what lies ahead for us.

And really look forward to what is in store for Rev D. Great big wonderful things!

A prayer:
Dear G*d
Change is in the air and it is not just spring.
We are facing loss. But not in a bad way.
Our minister, the woman who has pastored our church
church for the last 10, nearly 11 years is leaving.
It is time, she says.
and that may be true
So dear one, I am asking that you hold her
in light and love. Surround her in your loving embrace
give her confidence and courage and hope.

Remind her of Jeremiah 29:11-13
New International Version (NIV)
11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”

Remind us also!

Our church has a lot of work ahead of us. Give us confidence, courage and hope also. But truth be told, Divine One, I know we have those things.

Help and encourage all of us when asked, to say YES.

and can you please make sure that the new minister will like Kleenex in the pews?

Amen, and may it be so.

PS>
just spoke to Rev. D.
she said she will never EVER let there be Kleenex in the pews.

HUMPHFT!

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