Report of the UUA Commission on Institutional Change

Widening the Circle of Concern

“The work of becoming more equitable, inclusive, and diverse within our congregations is justice work. If we cannot do this well, we cannot be effective as justice partners.

A frequent criticism of anti-oppression and hospitality work is that people are tired of us focusing internally, “navel-gazing,” rather than working on issues in the world. Yet greater awareness of the practices within our own institutions is complementary work to our justice. We cannot do accountable justice work if we are not able to remain in good relationship with those most affected by the conditions of injustice.”


AN UPDATE ON GENERAL ASSEMBLY 2020

“A 100% virtual GA comes at a time when many UU congregations have embraced virtual meetings and virtual Sunday services. Although this pandemic has been challenging for many, a silver lining is that UUs are adapting to and seeing the value of incorporating technology into their religious lives. With so many UUs already online, this year’s GA could well be our highest-attended Unitarian Universalist gathering in history! It will be accessible to a more diverse and global audience. It will  also help reduce our carbon footprint, which aligns with our commitment to care for the earth and environment.”

More here – https://www.uua.org/pressroom/press-releases/woyaya-general-assembly-update

Blessed Tuesday

Today is Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras, Shrove Tuesday, Fasnacht Tag, and many others.

Whatever you may call it, it is the day before Lent. In the Christian tradition, Lent is a forty-day period before Easter.  (Sundays are skipped in counting the forty days, because Sundays commemorate the Resurrection.)

We will be celebrating UU Lent with daily posts again this year. Here is the calendar. We hope you will join us on this spiritual journey.

Excerpt from Rising Stong

“Storytelling helps us all impose order on chaos—including emotional chaos. When we’re in pain, we create a narrative to help us make sense of it. This story doesn’t have to be based on any real information. One dismissive glance from a coworker can instantly turn into I knew she didn’t like me. I responded to Steve so defensively because when I’m in doubt, the “I’m not enough” explanation is often the first thing I grab. It’s like my comfy jeans—may not be flattering, but familiar.

Our stories are also about self-protection. I told myself Steve was blaming me so I could be mad instead of admitting that I was vulnerable or afraid of feeling inadequate. I could disengage from the tougher stuff. That’s what human beings tend to do: When we’re under threat, we run. If we feel exposed or hurt, we find someone to blame, or blame ourselves before anyone else can, or pretend we don’t care.

But this unconscious storytelling leaves us stuck. We keep tripping over the same issues, and after we fall, we find it hard to get back up again. But in my research on shame and vulnerability, I’ve also learned a lot about resilience. For my book Rising Strong, I spent time with many amazing people—from Fortune 500 leaders to long-married couples—who are skilled at recovering from setbacks, and they have one common characteristic: They can recognize their own confabulations and challenge them. The good news is that we can rewrite these stories. We just have to be brave enough to reckon with our deepest emotions.” – for the whole excerpt click here

What’s in your way?

Sometimes resiliency isn’t about what we do right but what we do wrong. Sometimes we undercut our own resilience. The below article lists some of the things that trip us up. So make some time this month reading through the article and identifying which of the 13 is in your way. And then take one step – large or small – to remove it from your life.

13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do

If you are feeling brave, you can even talk with a family member or very close friend and ask them which one is getting in your way.