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.
Our services this month share the theme of gathering around something powerful.
On October 3, we examine the values that we gather around as a community—our principles, our relationships—and how they call us to growth and the transformational work that we’ll be doing in our congregation this year.
On October 10, we look at how one of our central values—our right and ability to choose—helps create who we are.
On October 17 we celebrate gathering together as a community at the beginning of a new church year. There will be ice cream!
We welcome the Rev. Tania Márquez back to our pulpit on October 24 as she highlights choice as well—how our choices of what we buy and consume have an impact on so much and so many.
And at the end of the month, on the 31st, we share stories of the impact of our families, chosen and birth. How do our ancestors and our relationship and honoring of them guide and shape our life in this time.
We gather around powerful ideas and values. And they call us to be in the world and to be in relation with each other in loving, intentional, and hopeful ways. I hope this month encourages you to ask yourself how you live the values you claim in your everyday life.
I am so grateful to be gathered together with this community.
in peace and love