There are many isms we are fighting on the way to equality for all people. Whether is be racism, sexism, ageism, heterosexism, ableism, classism, or any other system of oppression, if we are not from the marginalized group, we are not going to have all the answers or do everything right. As Unitarian Universalists we want to “answer the call of love” and help change the world, but sometimes we have to start with ourselves. This article by Sam Dylan Finch has better ways to deal with being called out by marginalized people, because being defensive does not get us anywhere.
In Christian churches there is a 40 day period beginning Ash Wednesday and leading to Easter, that is full of meditation, prayer, and sacrifice. This is act of devotion and a spiritual practice.
While this is not a practice that all UUs participate in, it is something from our history and something that we may wish to participate in. The question might come up, “is there a Unitarian Universalist way to practice Lent?” The answer is yes. A calendar has been created by Mr. Barb Greve and Alex Kapitan. The idea is to focus on a particular word each day during lent and on the Sundays we are to reflect on the word and encourage each other to enact it in our lives. Should you choose to participate you can share your reflections with the hashtag #UULent
Here is the calendar for reference.
May your day be filled with light and the coming weeks be filled with introspection and healing.
We struggle to find the best ways to show out fellow human beings that they are worthy of dignity and respect. In this article a German discusses how Americans are often too polite when it comes to dismantling hatred and oppression. With the recent changes in the political realm, we need to pay attention to the lessons of history. When answering the call of love, we need to be more firm. We are to be there for the defense of others.
I have been thinking a lot about 2016. It is almost over. This article talks about the lessons we have learned to carry with us into 2017. “2016 was a bad year for too many people around the world: We can’t just wait, commiserate, post rueful memes, and hope that the next year will be better. We all have to go out and make it so.
2017 is coming, whether we want it to or not. Will it be better?
That’s up to us.”
Here is to a new year where we live up to our own expectations and make change.
Tomorrow is Saint Lucia Day, which is celebrated in many places, but is a very important holiday for Sweden.
Here is a recipe for the saffron buns or Lussekatter.
I hope you enjoy celebrating and learning about this holiday.
The Seventh Principle is Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part or We care for Earth’s lifeboat.
Here are some activities to help you celebrate:
As a family
Identify ways your family can be more green. Start a compost, recycle, bike more? As a family,choose one and commit!
Clean up trash at a park or in your neighborhood.
As an Individual
Advocate that your workplace, or your school, be more eco-friendly. Ask for recycle bins and reuse as much as possible.
Volunteer at a local animal shelter.
Shop your local farmer’s market for local and organic fruits and veggies.
If you aren’t already vegetarian or vegan, plan to make a vegetarian or vegan meal.
As the saying goes, “Reuse, Reduce, Recycle.” Today, recycle something from your house that would have been trash, and create a gift with it. Turn it into a work of art, or a handy item.