Reflections 10/23/11


Evidence that the moral arc of the universe is long but that it does bend toward justice: I was on a panel with four other clergy at the Sexual Orientation and Religion Conference, sponsored by the Student Pride Alliance at U-Mass Lowell. In addition to me, there was a rabbi, a Lutheran pastor, a UCC seminarian and a Buddhist priest. And I was the only straight person on the panel. I could truly point to our Unitarian Universalist faith as the one that led the way with welcoming and ordaining openly gay and lesbian clergy, beginning in the 1970’s and 80’s. Twenty something years later, the arc has bent a little more to now include the religious traditions of these other clergy.

Thinking about this, I realize that transformation is not necessarily something that happens immediately with a thunderclap. Perhaps transformation, especially transformation in the bend toward justice, is happening all the time, but we only glimpse it in moments of realization that despite it all, things are fundamentally different in ways that we could not have imagined previously.

Some other completely unrelated notes. First, a reminder to those of you attending the Sunday morning Bible class, we are NOT meeting on October 30th. We will resume on November 6th, when we will look at the story of Hagar and Sarah. New folks are welcome. We meet at 9 am upstairs in Room 3.

November 6th will be our All Souls Remembrance Service. Every year, we read the names of those we love who have died in the last year. If you would like me to include a name on the Circle of Remembrance list, please leave it in the box outside my door, or send me an email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

On November 13th, the Worship Committee and I will be leading a healing service at the 5:30 pm Evening Service. The goal, as I spoke about in my sermon on healing, is not to “fix” or “cure” anyone but to offer a community of listening, prayer, and blessing to those of us who are hurting in mind, body, or soul. This is a way that through worship and ritual, we can live out the line of our covenant of caring and being present to one another. Please join us if you are so moved.

Finally, some of you may have noticed that we have not held “Lunch with the Rev.”, a monthly luncheon that was hosted by the Caring Connection. The Caring Connection can no longer host this, due to its current membership all having week day commitments. If you are interested in working with me to continue this luncheon, please let me know: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 978-256-5555. You would need to be available on the third Tuesdays of the month, from 12:30 to around 1:30 to set up and clean up tables, make a pot of coffee, and to provide a dessert.

-Rev. Ellen

Contact Info

First Parish Church
2 Westford St
Chelmsford MA 01824