UUCC Board of Trustees President publishes a message to the congregation every month. Here is her message for January, 2017.
Each month, when your Board of Trustees, (Frank Hazzard, Jen Hayashi, Patrick von Schlag, John Harris, Jodi Brown, and Katja Fort Rhoden) and your Executive Team (Paige and Maureen) meet, we begin our meetings with a reading, chalice lighting, and a “spiritual practice.” For this year’s spiritual practice book, I chose the book of essays, Not for Ourselves Alone. We are working our way through this book, one essay at a time. Last month, Patrick lead us in a stimulating discussion on what it means to be a “covenantal” faith.
For this month’s memo and before I leave tomorrow for Southeast Asia, I thought I’d like to reflect briefly on the intersection, as I see it, between covenant and stewardship.
The UUA website states that:
“Covenant is the silk that joins Unitarian Universalist (UU) congregations, communities and individuals together in a web of interconnection. The practice of promising to walk together is the precious core of our creedless faith.”
‘Covenant’ is both a noun and a verb. It can be a written agreement among individual community members promising to behave in certain ways, and it can mean to engage in mutual promises with Spirit, with other people and communities.”
During Sunday services at UUCC, we sometimes recite to each other Our Covenant:
“Strengthened by our common humanity and inspired by our seven principles, we promise (or covenant)
to be a safe and welcoming community,
to nurture each other’s hearts and spirits,
to delight in the beauty of our diversity,
to struggle together on our spiritual journeys, and
to challenge each other to live our values.
Thus, we pledge our time and vigor to the continuing celebration of spirit, of the world, and of humankind.”
Wow! To this, I would only add “our treasure” as the third thing we pledge. It takes REAL money to run this important organization.
And now, I come to the stewardship part of this reflection.
Kennon Callahan on the UUA website says,
“Stewardship is about taking care of something we value and enabling it to grow. When we become stewards, we take responsibility and contribute our time, talent and treasure.”
He goes on to say,
“giving is a joyous process, and it has the potential to help us grow spiritually.”
So, when you consider your personal covenant with UUCC and the opportunity to grow spiritually and foster the growth of this institution that you love, please be generous and remember the words of Edward Everett Hale:
I am only one
But still I am one.
I cannot do everything.
But still I can do something.
And because I cannot do everything,
I will not refuse to do the
something that I can do. icon-fire