On Giving Honor — UUS:E Virtual Worship, May 24, 2020

Watch our May 24th virtual Sunday Service here. 

Bridging / Thoughts on Reopening — UUS:E Virtual Worship, May 17, 2020

Friends: You can watch the video of our May 17th service, including our bridging ceremony,  on the UUS:E Youtube channel.

The test to Rev. Josh Pawelek’s homily is here:

I want to share a few thoughts on what it means for us to get back to normal. By “us” I mean not only those of us in this service – but us as the wider communities of Manchester and Greater Hartford, us as the people of Connecticut, us as a nation.

Earlier we conducted our bridging ceremony. I want to offer congratulations again to John, Sarah, Nate and Mason. And I want to affirm that it’s a very strange and unnerving time to be bridging into young adulthood. The University of California announced this week that it would only be offering online learning for the coming academic year. I suspect each of you will be encountering similar decisions by the schools you are planning to attend this fall. There are many unknowns, and yet one thing we do know is that you will not be launching into young adulthood the way high school graduates always have. Please know that whatever happens, we are here for you. We are committed to supporting you, along with all the other UUS:E young adults who are experiencing disruption at this formative time in their lives.

What about the rest of us? What kind of future are we bridging into?

On Thursday the Unitarian Universalist Association’s Safe Congregation Team released guidance on how to safely return to in-person congregational gatherings. While that guidance is not definitive for us, we need to take it seriously. And the bottom line is sobering. They recommend not returning to regular in-person gatherings until May of 2021. In making this recommendation they are asking us to account for the most vulnerable people among us – not only in our congregation, but also in the wider community. That is, if our UUS:E community were to gather too soon and become instrumental in the spread of a new outbreak, it would not only negatively impact our people, which for me is unacceptable; it would negatively impact people in the wider community. That is also unacceptable. The UUA’s guidance is grounded first and foremost in “our abiding care and concern for the most vulnerable, inside and outside our congregations” and the “recognition that we are part of an interdependent web and, as such, our risk-taking and our protective actions affect far more than just ourselves.”[1]

We won’t be re-opening any time soon, which means we’re going to have to be innovative and creative in all the ways we offering programming, and especially in how we keep our congregational community connected. And when we finally do re-open, we will not be the same community. This social distancing time is going to change us. We are not bridging back to our old ‘normal.’ Something new awaits. We will discover this ‘something new’ as a congregation over the coming year.

The UUA’s guidance flies in the face of the widespread impulse to re-open the country. Connecticut begins re-opening on Wednesday. Other states have already begun re-opening, even states where the infection rate is still on the rise. Here’s my question: Are those in charge of re-opening taking the most vulnerable people into account? Are those in charge of re-opening acting out of an “abiding care and concern for the most vulnerable?” Do those pushing the hardest for re-opening recognize “that we are part of an interdependent web and, as such, our risk-taking and our protective actions affect far more than just ourselves?”

Ten days ago I was in a meeting with clergy from the Greater Hartford Interfaith Action Alliance. It was so striking to hear urban and suburban faith leaders compare notes on their experience of the pandemic. Case in point: the membership of our largely white, suburban congregation has had very little exposure to the coronavirus, and only a few positive tests. We have had no deaths. Yet my colleagues serving largely black, urban congregations report widespread infection and multiple deaths. One highly community-oriented pastor said he was getting at least a phone call a day to conduct a memorial service for someone who had died of Covid-19. Other pastors reported widespread food insecurity and economic hardship. The pandemic has exposed beyond a shadow of a doubt the many race-based economic, social and health disparities in our nation. The high infection and death rates among people of color aren’t a novelty. They are a clear-as-day symptom of the old normal. On the GHIAA call this pastor, speaking through quiet tears, said “we cannot go back to that.”

Friends: I don’t know what the future holds. None of us does. But as a society we cannot bridge back to the old normal. We cannot go back to being the wealthiest nation in the world without understanding that for that wealth to exist the way it does, tens of millions of low-wage workers, immigrants, undocumented people, Black and Latinx people must live with intolerable insecurity, just a breath away from economic ruin or personal health crisis or both.

We’ve been trying to help, raising money to address food insecurity, to support undocumented people facing ICE proceedings, to support domestic workers who’ve gotten sick, and now to support non-union rest stop workers who’ve lost their jobs. These efforts matter because they help vulnerable people survive the pandemic. But let’s be clear: they don’t change the old normal. Are we ready to be in the fight for a new society?

I hope we are. The old normal was a moral failing on the part of our nation. Now, with the coronavirus, it’s a moral catastrophe unfolding before our eyes. We cannot go back to where we were. In all your conversations about re-opening, and in every interaction you may have with officials who have a role to play in the re-opening, demand two things:

All re-opening decisions must be grounded in a demonstrable and “abiding care and concern for the most vulnerable.”

All re-opening decisions must start from a “recognition that we are part of an interdependent web and, as such, our risk-taking and our protective actions affect far more than just ourselves.”

If these values can be brought to bear in the re-opening phase, we will be on our way to a better future for everyone. In my view, fighting for this future now is a moral imperative. May we find our way into this fight.

Amen and blessed be.

 

Flower Communion, UUS:E Virtual Worship, May 10, 2020

Virtual Flower Communion at UUS:E, Sunday May 10, 2020.

Watch the recording of this service on YouTube here.

Watch the flower communion slide show created by Joe Madar here.

Watch Gina Campellone’s telling of “The Flower Ceremony, a Plain and Simple Beauty” (adapted from a story by Janeen K. Grohsmeyer in her book Lamp in Every Corner: Our UU Storybook) complete with beautiful drawings from the Gonzalez family here.

In Search of Compassion in Challenging Times — UUS:E Virtual Worship — April 26, 2020

You can watch UUS:E virtual Sunday Service from April 26, 2020 on YouTube here.

Read the text to Penny Field’s homily on compassion:

In Search of Compassion in Challenging Times         

I want to begin by sharing a personal story: Paul and I began sheltering in place on March 12. I had a lot of fear of getting the virus and having complications so I didn’t want to need to grocery shop for several months. I did a big grocery shop on the 11th and the house was well stocked but very soon after I noticed that I was thinking about food all of the time. I noticed how worried I felt about how I would keep getting fresh greens without going to the store or what we do if we ran out of this or that. Or what if the food supplies dried up? I could not stop thinking about food. I intellectually knew that we had plenty and I didn’t need to worry but some part of me was thinking about it constantly. And then I would feel a huge wave of shame about the fact that I have so much privilege, I have plenty of food, I have an extra freezer filled with great things and I’m still feeling this anxiety. What’s wrong with me?

I’ve been thinking a lot about compassion in these days of the coronavirus. What exactly is compassion and how can we all experience more of it? Compassion is a bit of a tricky word. It’s one that we think we understand the meaning of but often, when asked to define it’s hard to articulate what we understand compassion to be. Usually, people use words like “sympathy” or “empathy” or talk about the feeling of wanting to help those less fortunate. But I think it’s more than that.

Sympathy, and even empathy, place the person feeling that as separate from those receiving it. Aww I feel sorry for you!  Let me help you with that! Of course, wanting to help is never a bad thing but true compassion is something different. Something more. Kristen Neff, one of the first researchers in the field of self-compassion, has developed a definition that I think does a very good job capturing the true meaning of the word. She defines compassion as the ability to hold suffering with loving kindness

This sounds simple but it’s harder than you might think. To hold suffering with kindness we first have to really notice and acknowledge the suffering. Opening up to the awareness of someone else’s pain can feel quite uncomfortable. It’s why so many people walk by the homeless, the mentally ill, the panhandlers, and completely ignore them or have a judgement like: I’m not giving them money, they’ll just buy drugs. To be mindful of the suffering is to really see the human being and to acknowledge their pain: That must be so hard! Something terrible must have happened to that person that they are in this situation now. Truly being mindful of suffering can be very challenging.

And for some of us, we may be able to be present with other people’s suffering and even able to offer help but can’t seem muster much compassion for ourselves and don’t even think to try. How many of us are harshly critical of our own pain and have trouble being kind to ourselves? We might confuse self-compassion with feeling sorry for ourselves or we have a loud inner critic that thinks we can somehow “should” ourselves into better behavior. There I was in my anxiety about if there would be enough food for me during this pandemic and what did I say to myself? I said, “What’s wrong with me?” instead of “Wow. This feels really scary and it’s hard to be this afraid.”

To hold suffering, others’ or your own, with kindness not only requires really noticing the pain but it also calls us to pay attention to how we all suffer and how your suffering is or easily could be mine. This is our opportunity to reach for connection inside of the suffering. The Latin root for the word compassion is PATI, which means to suffer, and the pre-fix COM means with. COMPATI literally means to suffer with. Compassion brings people together in the suffering.

This, too, can be really hard. It’s so human to want to be separate from others’ suffering. It feels safer to think: That could never happen to me or If so and so would just stop doing that they wouldn’t be in that trouble. It’s a survival instinct to protect me and mine from perceived danger and often, other people’s suffering is perceived as a danger so we don’t habitually look for how that trouble could so easily also be ours. But if we can notice suffering and look for how we know that pain too, or how it’s so human to suffer in that way, then we are reaching for the invisible string that ties us all together.  We are choosing love as our religion.

This truth that we are all connected, what UUs name as the interconnected web of life; that we all suffer in strikingly similar ways, has never been so apparent as now, during this global pandemic. We are suffering the shared trauma of a completely unknown future. So many of the feelings associated with this time are shared by everyone, even if the actual day to day realities are radically different.

If you are someone who has a home and is able to shelter in place that does not mean you don’t have fear about the future. If you are able to work from home, that does not mean you don’t have fear of financial insecurity. If you are sheltering with family or friends, that does not mean you are not lonely or missing connecting in person with people. If you are fortunate enough to have a well-stocked pantry, that does not mean you don’t suffer from food insecurity.

And if you have feelings of guilt about your privilege you are not alone. It’s human and so many of us share those feelings and we can begin to practice compassion for ourselves. Can we notice our fears, our grief, our anger and can we acknowledge how human those feelings are? Can we then hold those feelings with an attitude of kindness as opposed to guilt or self-criticism?

Because I have a regular compassion practice, eventually I was able to make space for and truly notice and sit with my anxiety about having enough food. When I did that, I realized that my fear was deeply connected to childhood and ancestral issues. My mother was a depression baby and she raised me with all kinds of deprivations around food. Everything I wanted to eat was either too expensive or too fattening. This had a huge impact on my relationship with food and so the ability to be generous with food and have access to a wide array of delicious things for myself and to share with others became a big part of my identity. Of course I would have fears around food access.

And as I sat with that, I remembered that my mother’s mother escaped the pogroms to travel alone to the US, and that her mother lived in poverty in a shtetl somewhere in Eastern Europe. I began to understand that as a Jew, there was likely true food insecurity back to times of my earliest ancestors. That recognition allowed me to release the shame about my own fears and opened the door to a deep feeling of connection to all of the people who are suffering from actual food insecurity during this time of the pandemic. From a place of true compassion for myself and others, I could make donations to several local food banks and participate in a local initiative to bring food to the homeless. I could hold the suffering with kindness and feel my common humanity.

Whatever you are experiencing during this time, I wish for you the ability to practice true compassion for yourself and others. Whatever you are feeling, whatever you are struggling with, it’s human and we all have those feelings. If we can be mindful, pay attention to pain, to fear, to grief, to boredom, and remember our common humanity, we can truly feel that invisible string that connects us all and with kindness we can, be gentle with ourselves and from that place, reach out to those in need as if they were our own loved ones. As the Brandy Carlile song says:

we can be each other’s wheels and road

for each other’s heavy load,

see us through thick and thin,

for love and loss until the end.

Amen and blessed be

 

 

In Search of Compassion in Challenging Times, UUS:E Virtual Sunday Service, April 26, 2020

Gathering Music (Begins at 9:50)

Welcome and Announcements

Prelude “Carried Me With You” (Brandi Carlile) (performed by Jenn Richard)

Chalice Lighting and Opening Words (Gina Campellone) (Spoken by Maverick Schlechtweg)

We light our chalice this morning

in celebration of community and connection.

In community we find the people

who sit with us when we are lonely,

hold our hands when we are sad,

care for us when we are sick,

laugh with us when we are silly,

and help us find our way home when we get lost.

In community we find the gift of connection,

each of our hearts connected by an invisible string,

so that no matter where we are,

we are never truly apart.

Opening Hymn “Circle ‘Round for Freedom”(Linda Hirschhorn)

Circle ‘round for freedom, circle ‘round for peace,
for all of us imprisoned, circle for release,
circle for the planet, circle for each soul,
for the children of our children, keep the circle whole.

(Repeat)

Time With Gina  The Invisible String (Written by Patrice Karst, Illustrated by Geoff Stevenson)

Musical Meditation

Joys and Concerns

Musical Meditation

Offering

Again this morning we are taking our community outreach offering for the CT Alliance to End Sexual Violence. UUS:E member and Alliance board member Lisa Sementilli says: April is sexual assault awareness month, and there is, unfortunately, no moratorium on sexual violence during a pandemic. All of the Alliance’s support centers are open, and their hotlines are operating 24/7 to provide counseling, advocacy and support to victims and survivors.  However, the Alliance and its member centers are incurring costs associated with the unprecedented need for technology to support survivors  by phone and video during the crisis.  As a board member, I am also very concerned about our state and nation’s uncertain financial future and what that might mean for services moving forward.  The vast majority of the Alliance and its member center’s financial support comes from state and federal grants.  UUSE’s support is critical because it not only helps to fill new gaps created by the pandemic, but provides us with unrestricted dollars that we can use with flexibility to support victims however they need support, and to build the capacity to face potential funding crises. Thank you.

Offering Music “Love is My Religion” (Ziggy Marley) (Performed by Jenn Richard)

Homily “In Search of Compassion in Challenging Times” (Penny Field)

Closing Hymn “Come Wash Your Hands With Me” (from a UU Humor website, adapted from Carolyn McDade, middle verse by Pat Eaton-Robb)

Come wash your hands with me

Come wash your hands with me

Come wash your hands with me,

So we can know peace of mind.

And I’ll bring you soap,

When soap is hard to find,

And I’ll wash my hands with you

So we can help humankind.

 

Come wear a mask with me

Come wear a mask with me

Come war a mask with me

So we can have peace of mind.

Just sew one out of cloth

Or a scarf will do just fine

Just cover both your nose and mouth

To avoid the end of time. 

 

Please stay away from me

please stay away from me

please stay away from me

So we can know peace of mind…

And I will stay at home, for the allotted time.

And I will be at church this week, if the service is held online.

 

Extinguishing the Chalice

Closing Circle

Coffee Hour / Chat

Moral Monday CT “Justice for Jay” Public Witness

In partnership with Moral Monday CT, UUS:E’s Rev. Josh Pawelek helped organize the online “Justice for Jay” public witness in support of the family of Jose “Jay” Soto who was shot and killed by Manchester police on April 2nd.

Articles about the public witness appeared in the Manchester Journal Inquirer and the Hartford Courant.

View a portion of the witness on YouTube at JusticeforJay.

 

 

For the Earth Forever Turning — UUS:E Virtual Earth Day Service

Click here to watch the video of UUS:E’s April 19th Earth Day Service.

We Can Make Face Masks #3

Hartford Hospital staff-person, Melissa Tranberg, writes:

On behalf of Carol Garlick, Vice President, Philanthropy and all of us at Hartford Hospital, I would like to extend warm thanks for your thoughtful gift of gloves, wipes, dressing trays, and homemade masks. As our staff battles the COVID-19 outbreak, your gift will help them care not only for the safety of our patients and our caregivers, but of the greater community. We could not be more grateful.

Stay safe and be well,

Melissa

For all of you who are sewing face masks, here are some tutorials you may not have seen yet….

Best way to make bias ties for mask…no tools needed.

How to make adjustable ear straps if you don’t have elastic… (You can use t-shirts, paracord, etc.)

As always, if you are making face masks and you’d like to donate them to Hartford Hospital, please know you can drop them during the week in the bin outside the entrance to the UUS:E office.  They will be picked up at 3:00 on Sunday afternoons. Furthermore, if you yourself are in need of a homemade face mask, some of the UUS:E sewers are willing to send one or two to you. Contact Rev. Josh at his home office (listed in the UUS:E Directory) and we can get a face mask to you!

 

For the Earth Forever Turning — UUS:E Virtual Earth Day Service, April 19, 2020

 

Worship Preparation: Bring a small branch from a tree or bush into your personal worship space. Hold it up in your video feed during “Time with Gina.”

Gathering Music (Begins at 9:50)

Welcome and Announcements

Prelude “Song for the Birds” (Kristen Dockendorff)

Chalice Lighting and Opening Words  “I Pledge Allegiance to the Earth” (Vern Barnet) (Spoken by Meadow Bornhorst)

I pledge allegiance to the earth and all life,

the fields and streams, the mountains and seas,

the forests and deserts, the air and soil,

all species and reserves, habitats and environments;

one world, one creation, one home, indivisible for all,

affected by pollution anywhere, depleted by any waste,

endangered by greedy consumption, degradation by faithlessness;

preserved by recycling, conservation, and reverence,

the great gift renewed for all generations to come.

protected, preserved by reducing, reusing, recycling.

With conservation and reverence,

the great gift renewed for all generations to come.

 

Opening Song “We Shall Not Be Moved” (African American spiritual, adapted by Anne Vaughan for Earth Day 2020))

We shall not, we shall not be moved.

We shall not, we shall not be moved.

Just like a tree that’s planted by the water,

We shall not be moved.

 

We’re fighting for our children,

We shall not be moved.

We’re fighting for our children,

We shall not be moved.

Just like a tree that’s planted by the water,

We shall not be moved.

 

We’re fighting for our earth now,

We shall not be moved.

We’re fighting for our earth now,

We shall not be moved.

Just like a tree that’s planted by the water,

We shall not be moved.

 

We’re loving all Creation

We shall not be moved.

We’re loving all Creation

We shall not be moved.

Just like a tree that’s planted by the water,

We shall not be moved.

 

Everyone together

We shall not be moved.

Everyone together

We shall not be moved.

Just like a tree that’s planted by the water,

We shall not be moved.

 

First Reading  “Earth Day Prayer” (Vern Barnet) (Spoken by Anne Vaughan)

Musical Meditation “Blue Boat Home” (Peter Mayer, ad. by Mary Bopp)

Second Reading – “Letter from Chief Seattle.” (Spoken by David Klotz)

Musical Meditation “Blue Boat Home” (Peter Mayer, ad. by Mary Bopp)

Joys and Concerns 

Musical Meditation “Blue Boat Home” (Peter Mayer, ad. by Mary Bopp)

Offering

For the next two Sundays we are taking our community outreach offering for the CT Alliance to End Sexual Violence. UUS:E member and Alliance board member, Lisa Sementilli says: As we know, sexual violence victims often know their assailants.  April is sexual assault awareness month, and there is, unfortunately, no moratorium on sexual violence during a pandemic. All of the Alliance’s support centers are open, and their hotlines are operating 24/7 to provide counseling, advocacy and support to victims and survivors.  However, the Alliance and its member centers are incurring costs associated with the unprecedented need for technology to support survivors  by phone and video during the crisis.  As a board member, I am also very concerned about our state and nation’s uncertain financial future and what that might mean for services moving forward.  The vast majority of the Alliance and its member center’s financial support comes from state and federal grants.  UUSE’s support is critical because it not only helps to fill new gaps created by the pandemic, but provides us with unrestricted dollars that we can use with flexibility to support victims however they need support, and to build the capacity to face potential funding crises. Thank you

 Offering Music “Coaxing the Moon” (Kristen Dockendorff)

 Third Reading “The Story of the Sacred Tree”(Co-authored by Judie Bopp, Michael Bopp, Lee Brown, and Phil Lane, Jr. of the Four Worlds International Institute, an organization of Indigenous elders, spiritual leaders, and community members from across Canada and the US dedicated to holistic human, community, organizational and economic development. ) (Spoken by Mary Lawrence)

 Time with Gina  “Tree Meditation” and “blessing of the branches.” (ad. from the book Forest Bathing Retreat by Hannah Fries)

If you’ve brought a tree branch into your worship space, hold it up in your video feed during this meditation

Closing Song “For the Earth Forever Turning” (Kim Oler)

For the earth forever turning; for the skies, for ev’ry sea;
for our lives, for all we cherish, sing we our joyful song of peace.

For the mountains, hills, and pastures in their silent majesty;
for the stars, for all the heavens, sing we our joyful song of peace.

For the sun, for rain and thunder, for the seasons’ harmony,
for our lives, for all creation, sing we our joyful praise to Thee.

For the world we raise our voices, for the home that gives us birth;
in our joy we sing returning home to our bluegreen hills of earth.

Brief Closing Remarks (Rev. Josh Pawelek)

Closing Words “I Pledge Allegiance to the Earth” (Vern Barnet) (Spoken in unison)

I pledge allegiance to the earth and all life,

the fields and streams, the mountains and seas,

the forests and deserts, the air and soil,

all species and reserves, habitats and environments;

one world, one creation, one home, indivisible for all,

affected by pollution anywhere, depleted by any waste,

endangered by greedy consumption, degradation by faithlessness;

preserved by recycling, conservation, and reverence,

the great gift renewed for all generations to come.

protected, preserved by reducing, reusing, recycling.

With conservation and reverence,

the great gift renewed for all generations to come.

 

Extinguishing the Chalice

Closing Circle

May faith in the spirit of life

And hope for the community of earth

And love of the light in each other

Be ours now, and in all the days to come.

Coffee Hour / Chat

“Hope Is….” — UUS:E Virtual Sunday Service, Easter, April 12, 2020

Gathering Music (begins at 9:50 am)

Welcome and Announcements

Prelude  “You’ve Got a Friend” (Carol King, performed by Sandy Johnson)

Chalice Lighting and Opening Words “Rolling Away the Stone” (Sarah Moores Campbell)

In the tomb of the soul, we carry secret yearnings, pains, frustrations, loneliness, fears, regrets, worries.

In the tomb of the soul, we take refuge from the world and its heaviness.

In the tomb of the soul, we wrap ourselves in the security of darkness.

Sometimes this is a comfort. Sometimes it is an escape.

Sometimes it prepares us for experience. Sometimes it insulates us from life.

Sometimes this tomb-life gives us time to feel the pain of the world and reach out to heal others.

Sometimes it numbs us and locks us up with our own concerns.

In this season where light and dark balance the day, we seek balance for ourselves.

Grateful for the darkness that has nourished us, we push away the stone

and invite the light to awaken the possibilities within us and among us—possibilities for new life in ourselves and in the world.

Opening Hymn “Lo, the Earth Awakes Again”

Lo, the earth awakes again — Alleluia!
From the winter’s bond and pain.
Alleluia! Bring we leaf and flower and spray — Alleluia!
to adorn this happy day. Alleluia!

Once again the word comes true,
Alleluia! All the earth shall be made new. Alleluia!
Now the dark, cold days are o’er, Alleluia!
Spring and gladness are before. Alleluia!

Change, then, mourning into praise, Alleluia!
And, for dirges, anthems raise. Alleluia!
How our spirits soar and sing, Alleluia!
How our hearts leap with the spring! Alleluia!

Time with Gina  “Hope Is….”

Music “Crowded Table” (The Highwomen, performed by the UUS:E Children’s Choir)

Joys and Concerns

Musical Meditation

Offering

This morning and throughout the week we’re dedicating our offering to Hartford Deportation Defense’s Greater Hartford Immigration Fund. Hartford Deportation Defense (HDD) is a group of Hartford-area neighbors who work to support families directly impacted by the US Government’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement deportation operations. HDD is led by immigrants and their allies, seeking to dismantle the deportation machine and resisting the mass criminalization of black and brown people. The Greater Hartford Immigration Fund, which supports families impacted by deportation proceedings by helping to pay their legal fees, is also being used during the Covid19 pandemic to secure food for impacted families in the greater Hartford region, as well as to fund a network of impacted people who are producing facemasks to share within the community.

First Offering Piece “Psalm 19″ (Music by Elana Arian, performed by Sharon Gunderson)

May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart
be acceptable to you,
Adonai, my Rock and my Redeemer.
(Yih’-yu l’-ra-tzon im-rei fi,
V’-heg-yon li-bi l’-fa-ne-cha
A-do-nai, tzu-ri, v’-go-a-li)
Second Offering Piece  “Gigue” from  Partita in E for Violin Solo (J.S. Bach, performed by Sharon Gunderson)

Homily “Hope Is….” (Rev. Josh Pawelek)

Music “What Does the World Require of You?” (Jim Strathdee, adapted by Pawel Jura)

Closing Hymn “O Day of Light and Gladness”

O day of light and gladness, of prophecy and song,
what thoughts within us waken, what hallowed mem’ries throng!
The soul’s horizon widens, past, present, future blend;
and rises on our vision the life that has no end.

Earth feels the season’s joyance; from mountain range to sea
the tides of life are flowing, fresh, manifold, and free.
In valley and on upland, by forest pathways dim,
all nature lifts in chorus the resurrection hymn.

O Dawn of life eternal, to thee our hearts up-raise
the Easter song of gladness, the Passover of praise.
Thine are the many mansions, the dead die not to thee,
who fillest from thy fullness time and eternity.

Extinguishing the Chalice

Closing Circle

May faith in the spirit of life

And hope for the community of earth

And love of the light in each other

Be ours now, and in all the days to come.

Virtual Coffee Hour / Zoom Chat