Black UU History and Beloved Conversations

The last few days have been full of special greetings: Happy first day of February and Black History Month!  Happy Lunar New Year!  Happy Imbolc/Groundhog Day!  We are now getting MORE than 10 hours of daylight between sunrise and sunset – and are MORE than half-way to the Spring Equinox. Whoopie! (For the winter-lovers, there is still plenty of time for snow.)

One thing that religious congregations do is pay attention to the seasons and the celebrations of the year- seeing what is familiar and what is new both around us and within us, each time the wheel turns. This month, we’ll be paying attention to Black UU history through both music and biography. I’ve preached before about our forebears’ practice of slavery, Black member Cato Freeman and the votes to keep Black people (and the white women who dared to “associate or marry Black men”) segregated in the balcony, and the UUA Empowerment Controversy in the late 1960’s. This month we’ll be looking at some remarkable Black UUs and their congregations.

For those of you who listened to Rev. Tess Baumberger’s sermon of January 23rd and heard her moving story about “the scales falling from her eyes” when she took part in the online Beloved Conversations program, we are gathering a group of North Parish members who will be taking the course this spring and will be forming a “learning pod”. Lorryn Kinkaid, Nancy Lennhoff, Pat Grimm, Gail Forsyth-Vail have joined so far. I will be in a group with clergy.

This is the next logical, practical, engaging step in our congregational effort to engage in conversation about racial justice and equity, to become more of an anti-racist institution, and to satisfy our curiosity as life-long learners. It really does start here! The first lesson “drops to the learning platform for individual study and reflection at your own pace” on March 22nd.  Learning pods will meet about every two weeks. There are also 3 large group gatherings that will meet the third weeks of March, April and May. Find out more here. I am glad to subsidize the cost from the discretionary fund; just email me.

See you at the Meeting House for those who choose to attend this week- or on the screen for those who choose to zoom in!

Curiously yours,

Rev. Lee