General Assembly was wonderful. A big “thank you” goes to Sally Daniel, Rayven Holmes, Stacia Sanders and Doug Throp, the delegates who attended General Assembly on behalf of CVUU. A lot of good work was done, and much was learned this year. We will be telling you all about that later.
The joy of GA was mixed with the sad news of the building collapse in Florida and the revelation from Canada of the discovery of another 751 unmarked graves of mostly children at the site of a former residential school that was part of a system aimed at disrupting the families and culture of indigenous people. We have yet to fully reckon with that part of our history in the United States. Here we called them “boarding schools.” The National Native American Boarding School Coalition (NABS) estimates that there were 367 boarding schools in the United States, more than twice the number of residential schools in Canada. As more about what happened here comes to light, it will shock some, answer questions for some and for still others it will add to the grief and sadness about the loved ones taken from them. As Unitarian Universalists, the First, Seventh and Eighth Principles can help to guide us. Together, they call upon us to not only grieve the horror and injustice inflicted on others, but to understand that the web is not just demonstrated at a point in time, but that the past is connected to the future. The promise to accountably dismantle systems of oppression requires that we look at and earnestly work to mitigate and correct the damage done by past actions, which is still having an effect on people and our society as a whole today. We can do this.
Each week the children and youth in CVUU’s religious education program ask me questions, and I answer them in something called “Reverend Viola’s Reveries.” But for the summer, I plan to ask you, the adults, some questions. Children and youth can participate, too if they want to. They might even be good conversation starters for discussions with family and friends. The hope is not for you to come up with specific answers, but for you to engage in some reveries of your own this summer. So, stay tuned for the “Summer Reverie” each week!
As you know, during the regular church year, in each of my weekly messages to you, I included a song pick. I have compiled all the songs in playlists on YouTube and Spotify. In case you are interested, I will share them with you. Here are the links:
In peace and love,
Rev. Viola Abbitt (She/Her/Hers)
Coastal Virginia Unitarian Universalists
809 South Military Highway
Virginia Beach, VA 23464