The poet Hafiz wrote, “Like the morning breeze, if you bring to the morning good deeds, the rose of our desire will open and bloom.” Summer can be a time to feel the morning breeze. Often this can lead to a more active, enriching engagement with life. Slow summer days can spaciously allow for blessings to flow. As we transition back to the “school year” how can we make space for grace?
It may be more blessed to give than to receive … but both are essential.
Maggie Beaumont has been a Unitarian Universalist, and a Wiccan, since 1998, and joined this congregation in 2014. She is a former dean of students at Cherry Hill Seminary and a past board member of the Covenant of Unitarian Universalist Pagans (CUUPS). After a varied career in mechanical engineering, journalism, real estate, and adult education, she earned a master’s degree in Spiritual Psychology and serves today as a hospice and hospital chaplain.
Hildegard von Bingen was a Benedictine nun and abbess who lived in the area of Bingen, Germany in the late 11th and early to mid-12th century. She experienced visions from early childhood throughout her life and from these visions she wrote several books on religious philosophy; composed many plainsong hymns including the first opera in Western civilization; painted many illustrations of her visions; wrote two books on holistic medicine and pharmacy; and was advisor and frequent moral scourge to bishops, popes and emperors. In short, she was the renaissance woman 200 years before there was a renaissance man. Her religious philosophy centered on love, justice and the interdependent web of creation and was entirely consistent with modern day Unitarian Universalist beliefs.
Charles Gabriel was raised in the Catholic Church, wandered aimlessly through a 35-year period of atheism and finally developed a spiritual center to his life through the gift of his step-son’s drug addiction and the 12-step program influence of Nar-Anon and Al-Anon.
Charles joined USG in October, 2004 and has held several volunteer positions including Budget & Finance Committee member, Buildings & Grounds committee co-chair, Strategic Planning Council chair and Board of Trustees member.
Currently Charles sings in the USG choir and is now retired from church leadership. Today is his eighth sermon at USG.
Peter Newton Walsh read a number of his poems written over the past year.
Dr. Walsh has been a member of the Unitarian Society of Germantown since 1973, when he, his wife, Marny and their children, Steve, Kathy and Beth, moved to Philadelphia from England. He has worked at Temple University School of Medicine as a physician and scientist. For more than forty years he has been writing poetry, some of which he has shared with members of the Church in seventeen previous services.
Church can be both a noun and a verb. When the former it is usually considered a specific place. I believe that is too limiting; and given that belief, perhaps the meaning of faith can be found, even when, for this UU anyway, there are many times both historically and today that faith in its religious sense seems all but impossible, except maybe when helping a little girl catch her first fish.
The World Cup of Soccer is being played in Russia. This most important global sporting event contains many elements of the best and the worst of our current global, human society. True stories of rags to riches, players speaking dozens of languages with a common purpose and people all around the globe watching with joy and pain. At the same time bullying, corruption and violence leave a rancid feeling. How can we learn from the world of Messi and Ronaldo, Salah and Modric?
On Father’s Day, people often experience a wide range of emotions, including gratitude, regret, joy and pain. One aspect of the complex relationships people have with fatherhood involves the different ways in which people express love. In his book Five Love Languages, Gary Chapman identifies five specific languages of love: “quality time, words of affirmation, gifts, acts of service and physical touch.” How do we develop and appreciate abilities to speak different languages of love?
We celebrate this past year’s achievements, children and teachers. Join us for this lively intergenerational service where we affirm our commitment to the youngest members of our community. The Worship Service will be immediately followed by a potluck BBQ and CSD Carnival.
Spring is often a time of transition. The season is filled with weddings, graduations, life changes and the promise of new adventures. This Sunday, we celebrate the baby dedication of Soleil Sanders and Intern Minister Connie Simon’s last Sunday in the USG pulpit.