April Showers Bring May Flowers
What a topsy-turvy month was April! From dejection to relief, fearful hunkering down to resilient expansion—April swung our hearts and souls in dizzying turns. I look to May for a momentary pause from the disturbing events of last month. Right now, I am thinking of community, our congregation, and the marvelous and harmonious variety we see among our members. I am, In particular, reflecting upon the “Building Your Own Theology” class that I was privileged to participate in at Starr King church last winter and the fruits of which will be presented to the congregation at a service at the end of May.
“Building Your Own Theology” fosters an in depth searching for the roots and experiences of one’s own theological, spiritual or humanistic beliefs and a sharing together of these insights with the group. It is a perfect bridge between an individual’s open discernment of her special and unique spiritual experience and the group’s collectively sharing their reflections on a person’s truth. The best analogy I can muster for our class is that its result is like a collage with its multiple personal spiritual snapshots cohering together into one beautiful, but complex artwork. We can see nature-based theology grafted onto a humanistic ethics combined with a personal image of the Divine to whom we can lift up prayers. Such splendid diversity! Even our personal journeys can become collages of radically different spiritual experiences.
The class is a mirror of our congregation—a congregation, not of one body and one mind unified by one creed, but a collective eco-system of many who symbiotically and organically nurture the development of each other’s religious faith through love.