Minister’s Message – August 2019
It is good to be back at Chalice! I’m excited to begin our fourth year together. Meanwhile, thank you for granting me a productive, rejuvenating, and inspiring break.
During my 3 weeks of Study Leave, I read a number of excellent books. You’ll be hearing about them in upcoming services. Some were focused on anti-racism work, some were for Board and organizational systems work, and some were for sermon inspiration. I also planned worship for the next few months, developed a new curriculum, prepared upcoming workshops and brainstormed sermon topics. It was a fruitful time of productivity and quiet. Part of what allowed me to accomplish so much was my silent retreat. I returned to a haven run by Benedictine monks without any internet, phone access or distractions. I also attended a 5-day Leadership workshop, which was extremely pertinent to my work with you. During my two weeks of vacation, I got to spend much needed time with my family and had fun doting on Michael and Gabriel. I traveled a little, learned how to cook with an Instantpot (some of you turned me on to that), cleaned out closets, danced a lot, spent time with my ailing dog, and went for long walks on the beach. It was a perfect combination of rest and rejuvenation.
Now that I’m back, we’re diving right in.
Our beloved Sydelle Lopez’s memorial is here next Saturday, August 10 at 11 am. Please join us if you knew and loved her. That evening at Chalice there will be a fantastic folk concert by our very talented Merlin Snider and friends, open to all. Come for an evening of unforgettable music that benefits our congregation. Meanwhile, Michael and I will be hosting a dinner in our home the following week, that 11 of you purchased at our auction this year. In late August, there will be a weekend focused on racial justice at Chalice with our special Multi-Cultural Transformation Day on August 24, followed by our Beloved Conversations service on August 25. We also have upcoming Religious Education and Worship Committee Retreats. In addition, our Community Life Team and I are preparing to launch a new membership class series, based on the Chalice Circle format, which will begin on September 15. We will have 3 sessions in this ‘Starting Point’ group, one each month, in which we will explore different aspects of what it means to be a UU and part of our Chalice community. We are inviting long standing members and newer visitors to join us for this pilot program. Let us know if you’re interested.
And of course, please be sure to join us for our annual ‘Ingathering’ service on Sunday, September 8, when we will return to 2 services at 9:15 and 11am. The week after, on Sunday, September 15, there will be a special service officially launching our new nickname: “Chalice”. Our Share team has been working hard behind the scenes getting ready for that day. If you have poetry, stories, music or art you wish to offer to celebrate that day, let me know.
Meanwhile, I can’t wait to see you this Sunday. I’ve missed you all! Looking forward to hearing stories of your summer. Also, I am inspired and uplifted when I imagine another precious year together. It has always been, and continues to be, an honor and a privilege to serve this loving, committed fellowship.
With gratitude and anticipation,