This has not been like what I thought coming back into my shared ministry with you would be like! I thought we might have a congregational dinner, that I’d be sitting down with you and the committees and teams . . . And instead everything is being reimagined, and I have been on a steep learning curve! And you’ve been right there with me on that curve, creating and realizing a new infrastructure and new ways of organizing that are enabling us to maintain our connections with one another and work our shared UU ministry. I’m really impressed with the relative smoothness with which you-all have taken to meeting up and worshiping online. Then again, I always knew you were a savvy bunch!
How we are “doing church” has changed so much, and I’d just like to recognize a few folk in particular for their fleetness of foot, openness of heart, and generosity of spirit. Dan Forbush and the Worship Team have Zoomed along, reimagining what it means to put a worship service together when you are putting it online. The Care Team has been especially diligent in reaching out, making calls and helping folk out with food, rides, and companionship. Lucy Manning and others have been identifying new needs in our community and mobilizing to address them. Jack Carter and Mike Goodwin have been keeping a close eye on how the financial situation is changing and where new opportunities are emerging. Merle O’Connor, our acting Director of Religious Exploration, has been working hard figuring out how to connect with families and reimagine what supporting a UU family looks like when we’re all sheltering at home and having to connect online.
And Janice Wold, your Congregational Administrator, has stepped up in so many ways. Figuring out how best to use and maintain a Zoom account and the many ways in which it might fulfill what we need. Assembling, editing, and shaping a Journey Well mailing twice a week instead of once. Updating our website and making sure our messaging is framed appropriately and creatively. And all that on top of all the day-to-day operational stuff that she does — and now is figuring out how to do that stuff remotely. I don’t know that we recognize how much she does for us, but the degree to which we depend on her has just been amplified by the current crisis.
I am so grateful to be back with you all. Our Universalist theological heritage reminds us that we are all in this together. And it is in recognition and celebration our mutual dependence that we will endure and even flourish. Even now.
P.S. I would love it if you went to calendly.com/revjoeuucss and told me a time when we can have a chat over Zoom or just the phone! I’ve missed you.