Minister’s Corner March 2017

As I write this, snow is steadily falling, but just yesterday I was walking around in short sleeves. From those few days of heat and sunshine, I gained renewed energy and hope. This month’s themes are “Faith” and “Hope”… or is it “Faith and Hope”? These two things are connected, as is much of life, but not exclusively so.
Faith is a hot topic, and it only takes a peek at history to know it always has been. (The Crusades, anyone? How about the Inquisition?) Right now, there is a strange and insidious movement for using “Freedom of Religion” as a mode of oppression. Faith is being defined by a small group of anti-LGBTQ+, anti-choice, usually white, usually upper middle class, people who hide under the title of Christian. This potential legislative protection for doctors who refuse care of trans patients, adoption agencies that refuse to allow LGBTQ+ parents to care for the vulnerable children who need them, employers who can take away medical care for people who use health coverage to receive birth control is dangerous and counter to our faith as UUs. Our faith calls for us to recognize the inherent worth and dignity of each person, allow them to use their voice for a vote in their lives, and to strive for justice, compassion, and equity in human relations. If these laws go into place, what happens to our faith? Where would our religious freedom be? Deporting immigrants, refusing refugees, these are directly counter to the commands of multiple traditions.
So we must use our faith. Use it as a source of strength. Use our voice as people of faith, and reclaim the space that has been taken from us. Do not let others define who you are.
That is the Hope. The hope of progressive, inclusive, loving faith. Not just ours, but Pagans, Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, and all who answer the call of Love. Those who use their faith to open their minds and hearts are the Hope.
May we find the Hope we need in times of trial. May we bring Faith so others may have it.
Blessed be. Amen.