Worship Leader: Bill Ratcliffe
The fragile spirit of generosity is founded on gratitude and results in joy. Gratitude, generosity and joy are all interconnected and based on a perspective of abundance. Being generous is both intransitive and transitive. There is the intransitive spirit of being generous, which just is. There is no object or conditions for the generosity. Then, there is transitive generosity which has a goal or goals, to which it is directed. Reflect on both the intransitive and transitive aspects of generosity.
The Gratitude: Generosity: Joy dialogue questions/comments are:
1. How do you maintain a perspective of abundance during these difficult times?
2. How do you determine which congregations, organizations and charities receive your volunteer and financial generosity?
3. What can our Unitarian Universalist faith community do to foster a perspective of abundance?
Director of Congregational Life
As I reflect on my placement at the Southwest Centre for Forensic Mental Health I am pleased that I come from a Unitarian Universalist pluralistic faith tradition. In Chaplaincy we cannot put forward our own agenda or ideas about religion or spirituality, we must respect and listen to the patient’s views about this and help them pull out strengths and perspectives on hope and life. I have worked with people that had very little spiritual or religious background to people entrenched in a particular denomination. We are to be present to hear their needs, concerns etc. There are days when religion isn’t even discussed. This is also a time for us to review how our life has affected our approach and to learn about biases that hamper care. This has been a poignant time of personal discovery for me. I will give you more information about one discovery I made at this month’s service about the Shadow Side of Generosity.
As our numbers at services continue to rise, and we welcome new people to our meeting house, and we build on the excitement of this momentum, please consider the “Act in the World” part of our mission statement. I am so proud of those who have stepped forward to help the Afghani refugee family, as I am of our Board for allowing the Pflag and Trans groups to use our building at little to no cost. We are small but mighty. Trinity United Church monthly meals are a way to give back and we continue to look for synergies through the Argyle Basic Needs group. We want to continue this outreach to the London Community and ensure we are available as a community hub. Our RE program has a regular complement of 6 children and we hope to focus on this group in the coming months. We have brought the Membership, Outreach and Communication groups together and will be moving forward to let people know about Unitarian Universalism as a great option for people that are liberal in their views. Community partnerships will be the answer to “we are so small and can’t take this issue on”.
Generosity is this month’s theme, and while I disdain talking about finances this is a good time to reflect on the choice we offer to people and our hope to increase our presence in London. I wait for the time when I do not have to explain what being a UU means.
Feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns at 519-859-1640.
Lori Turner Otte,
Director of Congregational Life
Unitarian Universalist Hysterical Society Valentine Wishes
For some, the Unitarian Universalist Hysterical Society requires an introduction. The UU Hysterical Society (est. 2015) was founded by Liz James. The term hysterical was deliberately chosen as it was once used to discredit women. Religion is based on culture. James states that “Culture is created and propagated in many ways. This is ours.” Sue Geri Bierman’s quote is so appropriate, “If you didn’t spray coffee out of your nose today, we didn’t do our job”. Humour with substance is the UU Hysterical Society’s brand. A great example of worth and mirth is the UU Hysterical Society’s Valentine Wishes reprinted below. Enjoy the wisdom and the humour!