Dear CVUU Members and Friends:
I am so grateful for the presence of Rev. Jennifer Ryu in worship this past Sunday. Rev. Jennifer preached about the power of feeling our feelings, one of those things that might seem simple but that is surely not easy. So much in our modern-day culture lures us away from being present to ourselves and each other – television, social media, our phones. Tools that were designed to connect us to the world around us have actually left us more isolated than ever. Ironically, perhaps, taking time to really tune in to our own feelings can make us more available to others. If you don’t already have a practice of mindfulness, I encourage you to take time at the beginning of each day to breathe deeply, notice where you are, and check in with how you are feeling. Member Stephanee Howell is offering a 6-week mindfulness practice group, starting soon. What a wonderful opportunity to begin or deepen a practice of mindfulness. I like to end each day with a practice of gratitude, taking time to notice what I am grateful for. I find that even in the toughest of days, there is much to appreciate.
One of the things I am grateful for is the many gifts that you all possess and your willingness to offer them in community. Our own Howard Adams has spent his entire adult life helping others be successful. On Saturday, March 14 (9-2) Howard will offer a leadership workshop at CVUU. Leadership, as I understand it, involves setting a clear direction and then inspiring and equipping others to help achieve the goals you share. One of the challenges in growing congregations like this one is passing the baton of leadership from one generation of leaders to the next. Whether you are currently serving in a leadership role or think that leadership might be in your future (hint: it might well be in your future!), please join us for this important workshop, where we will work together to understand what makes an effective leader. I look forward to learning with and from Howard and all of you.
Another opportunity for spiritual deepening! Beth-Ann Dick and I will be offering a Bible Study on Saturday mornings during Lent. Starting on Saturday, February 29 and concluding on Saturday, April 11, we will gather to read together the texts in the New Testament that focus on Jesus’ ministry, his teachings, and his death. You don’t have to identify as Christian or theist to be interested in and moved by a study of the Bible as sacred text. This study is open to all who would like to go deeper into the texts that have influenced people throughout the world for centuries. We will gather in the meditation room on the second floor from 9:30 to 11, beginning on Saturday, February 29th. There will be benefit in attending all sessions, but you are welcome to attend one, some, or all sessions. Please email me with any questions and let me know if you plan to attend.
As always, I look forward to continuing our journey together.
Rev. Justine Sullivan
Interim Minister, CVUU