Message from Jon – September 2020
Dear Members and Friends:
When I went into my office last week I noticed that the desk calendar read March. I had to catch my breath! While I have been in and out of the office over these last months, I have not worked in my office for six months. Our lives have taken such strange and unprecedented patterns of working and being. And we do not know when they shall return to former patterns or whether we shall live now with a mix of the mourned familiar and the ever new.
Looking beyond our own personal circumstances we witness a world with many pressing challenges. We have now entered in dead earnest a presidential election season which could have very dire results for our country and the world. Our hearts and streets are filled with understandable rage against a racist system that literally kills people, especially people of color. The pandemic continues to wreak havoc. Soon it will join forces with its twin, the flu season, and who knows what that will mean. Some people are making a lot of money in this economy, but far more are losing the security of common necessities. To hold even some of these challenges without the benefit and comfort of face to face proximity with dear persons and communities puts an added strain on all of us.
As a remedial gesture the staff is beginning to think of ways we might start using the building again for small group gatherings come October. We need to see and hear each other. We need to be in our sacred space. And using the state public health guidelines as our script we can begin experimenting with ways to build community again. Some of the possibilities we are exploring are: allowing a small number of persons to gather in Nathan Johnson Hall on Sunday morning to view the worship service. Folks would have to sign up for a spot and sit in an assigned seat while wearing a mask. Another possibility is having a weekly daytime gathering for 10-12 people, again in NJ Hall, just to share what is happening in each of our lives. We are thinking about some safe gatherings in the parking lot for families. Perhaps tours of the building, or an opportunity to sit in the chapel in quiet meditation. Please stayed tuned as we announce just what we would like to try next month.
At a recent Zoom meeting for UUC members I heard from them how much this church means to them. It certainly warmed my heart. I, too, have felt isolated and missing the many enriching relationships we share together in our community of memory and hope. My great-grandfather used to say, all that really matters is that we have the capacity the meet what comes. We are stronger together.
Warmly, Rev. Jon M. Luopa