Memo from MAM – April 2

I am sorry that those of you who normally join us via Zoom were unable to do so on Easter Sunday, March 31. Upon arriving Sunday morning, we discovered that we’d had a power outage at the church the night before (storms) and our internet was down and not cooperating. Jim, of our tech team, attempted to record part of the service on his phone so we may be able to share part of that with you soon.

For me, the worship service revolved around this poem by my colleague Richard Gilbert, whose justice work and meditative writings I admire.

A tomb is no place to stay,
Be it a cave in the Judaean hills
Or the dark cavern of the spirit.

A tomb is no place to stay
When fresh grass rolls away the stone of winter cold
And valiant flowers burst their way to warmth and light.

A tomb is no place to stay
When each morning announces our reprieve,
And we know we are granted yet another day of living.

A tomb is no place to stay
When life laughs a welcome
To hearts that have been away too long.

From his book In the Holy Quiet: Meditations by Richard S. Gilbert, published by iUniverse in 2012. Available from the UUA bookstore.

For those able to attend, I appreciated your enthusiasm for the Bunny Boogie during the Moment for All Ages.  Kudos to Religious Exploration staff and volunteers for a successful Easter Egg Hunt.  And many thanks to all the musicians, from beginning to end, who made it a meaningful worship service.

Jane Goodall, anthropologist and environmentalist, turns 90 tomorrow, Wednesday, April 3.  She is using the occasion of her 90th birthday and the year to follow to champion her passion for the earth and its inhabitants.  

As a congregation, our theme for April is interdependence.  I have learned about interdependence from the research, observation and writings of Jane Goodall. In 2021, she wrote the New York Times Best Seller, The Book of Hope: A Survival Guide for Trying Times.  On Sunday, I will be reflecting upon another NYT best-selling book of hers that impacted my life, Harvest for Hope: A Guide to Mindful Eating. When the Seventh Principle Team of First Unitarian Church invited me to preach about the interdependence of our consumption of food and the environment, this book immediately came to mind.

A description of Harvest for Hope states:

“One of those rare, truly great books that can change the world.”-John Robbins, author of The Food Revolution. The renowned scientist, Jane Goodall, who fundamentally changed the way we view primates and our relationship with the animal kingdom now turns her attention to an incredibly important and deeply personal issue-taking a stand for a more sustainable world. In this provocative and encouraging book, Jane Goodall sounds a clarion call to Western society, urging us to take a hard look at the food we produce and consume – and showing us how easy it is to create positive change.

Offering her hopeful, but stirring vision, Goodall argues convincingly that each individual can make a difference. She offers simple strategies each of us can employ to foster a sustainable society. Brilliant, empowering, and irrepressibly optimistic, Harvest for Hope is one of the most crucial works of our age. If we follow Goodall’s sound advice, we just might save ourselves before it’s too late.

Happy Birthday Jane Goodall and blessings to those who offer hope in hard times.

Warmly, MAM
Reverend Mary Ann Macklin

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