Last night, a few UUFSC members and I attended a post-Charlottesville community organizing gathering, hosted by Unify StanislaUS, the group that formed after the community organizing meeting UUFSC hosted last June. I’m not sure I’ve ever been in a room that
like, a room of Muslims, Latino Catholics, White Protestants, Jews, Black Protestants, Hindus, Vietnamese Buddhists, white UUs, and Humanists gathering to get to know one another. The meeting was held in both Spanish and English, which meant the meeting went slower than if we had just were working in one language. In middle of the meeting, our Muslim siblings, who had been fasting that day for Eid, broke their fast with everyone and then did their sunset prayers as the rest of us snacked on cookies and awkwardly stood around– were us non-Muslims supposed to watch? Or was it rude to watch? At the end of the meeting, the communities of color were asked to share what requests they had of those gathered– the group was acknowledging that some communities of color are feeling and being more targeted and threatened than other communities. Chatting with someone after the meeting, I asked how the meeting was for them. And their response was “Good and…awkward.”
Here was a gathering of really diverse people, diverse in all kinds of ways: language, immigration status, religious race, ethnicity, and class. Does his kind of gathering not embody some of our most precious liberal values? Yes? And did it feel good? Well, kind of…but it also felt awkward. And I’m sure we weren’t the only ones to feel that way. And yet, over 100 people showed up to be awkward together. I don’t think “awkwardness” often gets named as a stage of spiritual development, but after last night, I pretty convinced that it is most definitely one.
I look forward to worshiping with you this Sunday: Labor of Love– We gather to honor all the labor that has brought us to where we are today, to remember the work, the love, the struggle, the care. Rev. Darcy will lead members in an extended meditation and then members will share about the labor they would like to honor. Worship Leaders this week are Rev. Darcy, Sharon Arpoika, and Haruko DeArth.