My friends,

As I sit to write this column for you there are bombs and deadly artillery falling on the people of Ukraine, there are children and families in Texas and Florida whose governments are telling them that their love and very existence is wrong and abusive and abhorrent, and there are still thousands and thousands of people sick and dying in our communities and around the world—dying from disease, but also from a lack of care and love and commitment to health for all.

How to respond to the pain and anxiety and violence in the world around us? How do we as people committed to justice and love react? As I sit in my home office, I look out the window at Mount San Jacinto. The snow is just so glorious today. And the old Psalm comes to my mind: “I will lift up my eye to the hills. Where is my help coming from?”

Today, I’m holding our ever-developing beloved community as my source of connection, inspiration, and hope. Whether in person or through the phone or a computer screen, knowing that I am part of a group gathered intentionally to care for each other and to challenge and invite each other to deeper connection and deeper understanding. A deeper love for the world as it is an as it might become.

A reminder to reach out to each other, to share what’s going on, and to keep our community and our wider world in the fierce gentleness of your hearts.

In peace and love

Rev. Ian

Minister’s Message Recent Posts

How do we respond to the pain and anxiety and violence in the world around us?

My friends,
As I sit to write this column for you there are bombs and deadly artillery falling on the people of Ukraine, there are children and families in Texas and Florida whose governments are telling them that their love and very existence is wrong and abusive and abhorrent, and there are still thousands and thousands of people sick and dying in our communities and around the world—dying from disease, but also from a lack of care and love and commitment to health for all.

Bread not Stone: A Bowl of Stones and Shells

Dear Friends,
I have a little bowl of stones and shells on my bedside table. I know that they came to me, one by one, from almost every place I’ve been and moments I’ve shared with loved ones and colleagues. But I couldn’t tell you where each individual stone came from.

Bread not Stone: Living in Love

February is a time when we often focus on love in all of the ways it plays out in our hearts and lives.
I am so often inspired by the words and thinking of others, and so this month I wanted to share with you some things that inspire me when I think about love and how we craft it together.

Bread not Stone: Resolving to Love

It’s a new year by our calendar. It’s a new year by the sun and the stars and the moon. It’s a time when so many of us make plans to change who we are, how we are in the world, how we are living in our bodies. We make resolutions to change our wretched, lazy lack of discipline in some area of our life and to start anew with new discipline and commitment and focus.

Bread not Stone: Beloved

Last month I shared from the pulpit my conviction that the values that we share and express as Unitarian Universalists call us to do the work of love, justice, and inclusion. For me, this is not just the work of one sermon or worship service but our daily lives.

Bread not Stone: Gathering

When I was at university in Toronto, I was usually unable to travel back to my parents’ home for Thanksgiving weekend and so I would usually have Thanksgiving dinner with my aunt’s family there in the city. (I was in Canada, so Thanksgiving was in October!) It was always a wonderful time. The opportunity to gather together around food was wonderful, of course, but it was also deeply meaningful to gather together around ideas and values: family, gratitude, generosity.
I know that our congregation and our UU tradition and values have become that gathering place for so many of us. A place we can gather together to explore our values, to hear and share stories of our lives, to be grateful for what we have, and to be mindful of how we live together in the world.