Family Minister’s Blog – February 2014

We are in middle of the National Standing on the Side of Love campaign, the national UU campaign, which kicked off Martin Luther King Jr holiday weekend. And I have to admit something unpolitically correct: I got tired of listening to yet another bio of MLK. Why? Because as great a leader as MLK (or anybody) is/was, a movement like the Civil Rights movement was successful because of the hard work and sacrifices of hundreds and hundreds of regular moms, dads, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, grandmas, and grandpas. When I think about how Starr King forms the hearts, minds, and souls of our children and adults, I do not want us to think the only way to do good, to contribute to a “world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all,” is to be MLK. (Quiz question: which UU principle did I just name?) Standing on the Side of Love campaign is about shifting our ideas of love from romantic and private to political and public. As Dr. Cornel West put it “Justice is what love looks like in public.” For me, church is this bridge between private and public love. Church is the place where we practice, mess-up, and try again in love. The love and care of many folks is what raised our new playground and the love and care of our church can raise up so much more. This month, which houses both Valentine’s Day and National Black History month, how can we express, be, and embody love? How can we teach our children and ourselves to express, be, and embody love? In the face of injustice and inequality, it is easy to get angry, fearful or resigned. But these emotions can take us only so far. This is one of the ongoing lessons of being part of church. Because in the words of civil rights activist Septima Poinsette Clark (often called the Grandmother of the Civil Rights Movement), “I never felt that getting angry would do you any good other than hurt your own digestion and keep you from eating– which I liked to do!”

Rev. Darcy