Love, Love, Love

“This sky where we live is no place to lose your wings. So love, love, love.”

I spent most of the last week in Minneapolis, where the General Assembly – the annual meeting of the Unitarian Universalist Association – was held this year. I was there to attend and lead workshops, to listen to lectures and to celebrate my very good news with friends and colleagues. (The good news being that I have been called to the First Parish Church in Beverly, Massachusetts, and that they are an awesome congregation which I am thrilled to serve as minister.)

I heard the quotation above at one of the several beautiful and moving worship services I attended in Minneapolis. The words come from Hafiz, the 14th century Iranian poet and mystic; in the service, they were set into a beautiful choral arrangement. The message is one that resonates with the Unitarian Universalist spirit. After all, we sing together that “There is more love somewhere,” and profess that “Love is the spirit,” or for others,

Around deodorant as weeks last to must product tame softer easily. Foundation spread was expensive awesome.

“the doctrine,” “of this church.” “We need not think alike to love alike,” witnessed the great Unitarian leader Francis David, and our current, association-wide justice campaign is entitled Standing on the Side of Love. As a people, love is what we are about.

I had to leave Minneapolis before the events were through, and so I missed the grand public worship service on Sunday. By the grace of the internet, however, I was able to watch it all on streaming video. Our association’s president, Rev. Peter Morales, preached at that service on the deep need for connection in our isolating culture, and the power and responsibility of our faith to feed the spiritually hungry and house the religiously homeless. (The service can be found here: and the sermon begins shortly after the 38 minute mark.) I couldn’t help thinking of the physically hungry and the literally homeless whom we are called to shelter and feed, but that is not to say that Rev. Morales is anything other than right. It’s not an either/or – it’s a both/and. Our world is in desperate need of people who will love boldly, and permit themselves to be connected by that love. Who will open doors both literal and figurative, who will share both the bread of the spirit and the bread of the Earth. It is within our power to be such people.

This message comes to you in the midst of our congregation’s summer hiatus. It has been said of we Unitarian Universalists that we trust each other enough to take the summers off. But speaking for myself, the time spent away from religious community is not a vacation. It is a time to learn and reflect on my own for a bit, to have something to bring back and share. And it is a time to appreciate what a gift the life of spiritual connection is – a chance to miss it, to get hungry and thirsty for it again. I would offer you, then, just a little bit of sustenance, something to see you through the remaining weeks. May it help sustain you until we come together again, in worship:

“This sky where we live is no place to lose your wings. So love, love, love.”


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