Covenantal, Not Creedal

Because of Unitarian Universalism’s radical commitment to the personal search for truth and meaning, we sometimes forget that it is much more than an essentially individualistic religion. Our faith, at its fullest, is composed of confessions, matured into covenants and incarnated in communities. The Unitarian Universalist path is more a communal spiritual journey than a personal exploration of faith.
— Tom Owen-Towle, "Growing a Beloved Community"

This week, on top of the regular work and the regular service contractors, we had a new face on campus-- the tech repair guy who disemboweled and rebuilt Rev. Ilene's computer. Like nearly every contractor before him, he asked "what we were." I'm frequently at a loss just how to address this question, and my responses tend to vary based on the inflection of the eyebrows of the one who is asking. 

This time, after an initial couple of responses that seemed to bounce off without impact, I described our congregation's faith as "covenantal, not creedal." That made the eyebrows go up with an accompanying "Hmm!," and we left it at that. He did not seem displeased. 

This week has been one of those where I really felt the "community" part of this congregation. The work would simply not have gotten done, due to the personal events in my own life that were impacting my time in the office. And so I'd like to hold up a few of our volunteers, who really live out the communal spiritual journey in front of me--setting aside multiple hours weekly to hold each other and this community together. 

The first is our care Team, Loving Hearts & Helping Hands. We are going through a period of intense need in terms of the number of people who need our care. This group just doesn't quit, and they provide us lessons in gratitude everywhere they go. 

Next are our office assistants--"the Susans." They excel at keeping the ship moving forward while at the same time being very sensitive to the needs of Members and Friends who come in to ask questions or seek solutions. Both of them have accepted quite a bit of discomfort--while learning new technologies--that have helped UUTC to transition from paper to digital archives, for instance. They don't exactly do that for themselves. They do it for UUTC. 

Susan Slocum.jpg
Susana Bir2.jpg

Finally, I'd like to mention Jim & Sue, who every week are doing something to help UUTC and the community to which it belongs. Just yesterday, Sue made a dash to the post office for stamps. And Jim prints and mails copies of our newsletter every week for those who don't have email. 

None of these folks do the work they do because they are obeying a creed. They appear, to me, to be fully engaged in creating the covenantal community we call UUTC, selflessly. I am deeply thankful.