Rev. Craig Rubano

Everything about our existence points toward change, flexibility, and
dynamic re-creation.
And it’s hard because change involves loss.
Can we hold the losses well
while not holding ourselves back?
— Rev. Manish Mishra-Marzetti

Our congregation has done important work these past months leading to our vote on a Resolution to adopt the spirit of the 8th Principle as a lens on all that we do—together and on our own—that our actions might contribute to the dismantling of racism and other oppressions. In every movement forward, in every change, there is inevitably something left behind, even if it amounts to a felt innocence or ignorance. Once heard, some things require us to rethink: shifting our worldviews and changing our minds aren’t easy things to accomplish. It is often through disagreement (as Clark points out) that growth comes, and sometimes our lives can seem like the sum total of the obstacles we overcome

(as D’Souza reminds us). We discover, again and again, that becoming is a shared enterprise: “There is no me without you. We shape one another” (enfleshed). As Paula Cole Jones taught us, passing a resolution on the 8th Principle is the easy part: the hard work lies always ahead. But I do want to celebrate with you! Dedicating ourselves in an accountable way to learning, growing, and changing, is a powerful moment in the life of this congregation. Thank you to the 8th Principle Task Force members who mobilized to help educate and guide us to this moment of “dynamic re-creation” (Mishra-Marzetti); your dedication and inspiration creates a beautiful blueprint for action that leads to our circle of concern expanding ever wider.

As I write, I am conscious of entering into the second year of living in pandemic times. I recall so vividly being outside last Easter with my family, wrapped up a bit against the wind and the chill, and never imagining that it would only be the first such Easter celebration…and yet, here we go again. I have learned so much, alongside all of you, virtually, these many months, but at the top of my list of new insights is the reality of what we discovered: community continues to be built, no matter the medium, whenever we connect through our shared values. It is this lesson that informs our UUCMC acronym-inspired annual fund campaign: UU Connections Make Community. Our community has grown, not become smaller, as we reach people previously unacquainted with our work; and our bonds have grown closer, not frayed, as we lean into the power of being connected—even in Zoom box assemblages. I look forward, not back, to becoming with you, with gratitude and newly inspired for what we will build together.

Happy Passover, Easter, and Earth Day,

Rev. Craig 🙂