After covering terrorist attacks in Paris, the rise of the European neo-nazism, and sex slavery in Spain, photo journalist Stefania Rousselle was overwhelmed with despair. She took a road trip, where she asked random strangers to share their most defining and life-changing love stories with her and then posted photos of these stories and people on her instagram account. You can see some of them here: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/aug/09/stefania-rousselle-photographer-love.
Journalists are allowed to ask strangers questions like “what is your most defining and life-changing love story?” But what if we all felt we had the authority and permission to ask such a question to those we pass on the street? In a moment of despair and hopelessness, what if we asked the next person we saw to tell us a love story? There was something so powerful about looking at these photos– love is happening all the time, in so many ways, all around us. These stories are not all bubble-gum and lollipops, for love is messy and hard. But it is also the thing most precious. Love is not the only thing we can set our sights on– Rousselle needed to focus on seeing love after the witnessing such evils of this world. But we cannot let the awful make us forget the acts of love and care happening all around us. For me, a big part of being a Unitarian-Universalist is that we promise to not forget to see love.
I look forward to worshiping with you all this Sunday for our annual In-Gathering and Water Communion Service– Navigating Currents: From all the places we went or didn’t go during the summer, we gather again to recommit ourselves to nurturing the Beloved Community. How do we navigate the currents we find ourselves in? Please bring some water from a special or mundane place. Worship leaders: Rev. Darcy, Todd Whitely, and guest musician Jorge Torrez.