It’s the last day of my vacation, and thanks to rolling the clocks back an hour I managed to make it up for church. I attended a Unitarian Universalist congregation I’d Goog.led and been meaning to check out for awhile.
I had a good feeling about it when I arrived, as I got out of the car, and someone comment that they liked my Dalai Lama “Loving kindness is my religion” bumper sticker. 🙂
I met several people, including the couple who founded the group a few years ago, and I think everyone I met introduced me to someone else. 🙂 All were very friendly and glad to have a newcomer. Also, I found that 2 attendees are a couple who I volunteer with at the soup kitchen. I was glad that everyone was so open because it is a smallish group, not a megachurch where you could visit virtually unnoticed if you wanted.
The service consisted of lighting the chalice, an opening, a hymn, a homily, an offering, a time of sharing announcements, joys and concerns submitted by those in attendance and written on cards at the beginning, a closing and the snuffing of the chalice.
I’ve tried a few religions/churches, and read about even more, and have sort of taken bits and pieces for a more personal philosophy.
I feel too liberal to be a Protestant and too spiritual to be an atheist.
I’m basically at a point where whatever church I have tried I feel false at in some way because I have to accept a predetermined list of beliefs that aren’t open to interpretation or amendment. In many religions, if you want to formally join, you have to renounce your old religion. I’m not cool with that. All of these things I have tried or learned about make me who I am – why should I have to choose? Why should I have to accept the Bible as the one and only truth? Why should I have to interpret it literally? Why should there be days in which one is obligated to attend church – shouldn’t I want to attend without an edict? Why must I choose between science and spirituality, logic and belief? I struggle with the belief that some carry that their church’s tenets are directly given from God and absolute – how can this be so when humans are involved? Why does one have to be wrong in order for another to be right? These are just some of the things I think about.
UUs draw from varied religious backgrounds and philosophies, and do not have a proscribed creed. They are guided by seven principles.
They seem to basically foster freedom of religion, developing personal theology, and tolerating the beliefs of others. It’s about reason, science, ethics, the continual search for truth, social justice, human dignity, love and good works.
The local group has a format that varies weekly and includes a homily, small group discussions, topic presentation, social event or service event. I’m looking forward to checking this all out some more and seeing if maybe I might belong there.