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Inspired by meaningful worship, faith development and fellowship, we are a welcoming congregation committed to spiritual growth and diversity, social justice, and serving the greater community.
If you’re looking for a liberal religious community that is a “Welcoming Congregation,” sees the sacred in the ordinary, draws wisdom from many religions, celebrates children, enjoys music, works for peace and justice and encourages every person to follow their own reason and conscience then you may have found your spiritual home.
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So much of our health as a church community depends on good communication. Did you know that the church staff, lay leaders and I spend more time talking about how to communicate important information than we do about almost anything else? Questions we ask ourselves all the time are, “Do people know this is happening?” “How can we make sure everyone knows that we are thinking about doing such-and-such and welcome their thoughts and feelings about it?” “How can we get in touch with folks to inform them of this change in plans or this program?”
We communicate constantly across the church community. We phone, e-mail constantly, send letters, publish newsletters on paper, post information on our website and Facebook page, send out a weekly update in electronic form as the Weekly Update, and talk to each other in person whenever possible. Tim Zimmer, this year’s Board President, and I even send each other text messages to plan our get-togethers. We all understand that this information can feel like a barrage at times, and we apologize for that and want you to let us know when we’re deluging you in information. We do not want to abuse the privilege of having your e-mail address but you see, we just want to make sure you know stuff!
One of the tasks the board is working on this month with the guidance of our Membership and Volunteer Coordinator, Linda Enrico and myself, is articulating clear criteria for church membership. As we consider what constitutes meaningful membership, we consider the importance of mutual, reciprocal care between the church institution and its people. The poetic way of stating this might be to say that we wish for every member and friend of UUCGL that you will be willing to “know and be known, to be ministered to, and to minister unto.” Communication is key to that knowing and that ministry. To that end, may I encourage and urge you to make it a regular practice to read your Weekly Updates and newsletters, to check in occasionally with the website, and to “Like” our Facebook page (if you’re on Facebook)? Thank you for your consideration of this request that I make on behalf
of our staff and leaders. We so want to keep you informed.
By the time you receive this newsletter in the mail, we will be into the month of December. I hope that you will find much to savor in the holiday season, and if it is a difficult one for you, that you will reach out for supportive companionship and safe places to stay warm and comforted while the whirl of high expectation and (sometimes forced) gaiety commences beyond your walls.
The First Church UCC in Swampscott will be hosting a “Blue Christmas” healing service on Wednesday, December 18 at 7pm. I will be there seeking a bit of peace amid the hectic preparations for Christmas. I’ll save you a seat if you let me know you’d like me to.
Blessings at this time when we most ardently hope for Peace on Earth.
In faith, hope and love,