Tuesday, April 5, 2011

The UU Fifth Principle calls us to do "Holy Work" according to Rev. Peggy Meeker

"Our fifth principle calls us to hear these voices, these claims, and more.  It calls us to stick it out, to work together.  Holy work."

Rev. Peggy Meeker, Sermon preached at the Brockport Unitarian Universalist Fellowship on 11/07/10.


As every good Unitarian Universalist knows our fifth principle is "The right of conscience and the use of our democratic process within our congregations and in society at large."

Seems simple and straightforward enough doesn't it? But what about when one's conscience goes against the conventional wisdom or is in conflict with the desires and preferences of the group in power? What happens when there is conflict and contradiction?

To have conflict and stay in relationship is holy work.

I asked a member of the UUA staff one time why 80% of the UU congregations are less than 100 members. She answered me simply with the statement "They don't know how to handle conflict."

Her statement, "They don't know how to handle conflict" struck me deeply. There was a note of recognition and I had what some people call an "Ah Ha!" moment.

Rev. Meeker says in her sermon about the retreat she went to where she was asked, "Whose am I?" She says that she realized that she belongs to LOVE.

Loving people and life warts and all is true LOVE. Jesus said the same thing.

2 comments:

  1. :I asked a member of the UUA staff one time why 80% of the UU congregations are less than 100 members. She answered me simply with the statement "They don't know how to handle conflict."

    That may well be true. I certainly know of one U*U church that was and still is totally clueless about handling conflict. Unfortunately the UUA is no better at handling conflict than those dysfunctional U*U congregations, perhaps especially when it comes to responsibly handling clergy misconduct complaints.

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  2. Very good blog this week, David. And I would venture to say that conflict is an issue of all denominations... or perhaps a characteristic of the human life form.

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