First Unitarian Church of Philadelphia ~ Welcome home!

The theme for ministry and worship in this first month of the New Year is "hope".

“Hope is

folding paper cranes

even when your hands get cramped

and your eyes tired,

working past blisters and

paper cuts ….” (from Origami Emotion, by Elizabeth Barrette) 

Hope has so many meanings... some grounded in our everyday existence, and others as ephemeral as “a thing with feathers”, as another poet, Emily Dickinson famously put it.

Hope lightens the burden we human beings carry as empathetic beings.  Hope is the power to get up again when we, or those we love, have been dragged down by disappointment, loss, grief and hardship. 

Hope is a feeling of expectation, some might say even wishful thinking.  Yet it is more concrete than that.  It is a spiritual practice - not a virtue we wish for but something we must grasp and use every day.

I think that this transitional ministry is largely about hope, in all its permutations.  The months we have already spent together move us closer to the threshold of a new ministry at First Unitarian.  But we’re not there yet… we still dwell in the land of wondering and planning and puzzling and, well, hoping!

And it is my hope that you’ve either taken part in or have signed up for a “Listening Circle”.  What is shared in those small group conversations will be a valuable part of the next phase of this transition: defining First Unitarian’s identity and purpose in preparation for “the search”.

If you have any questions or comments, please be in touch…

In the faith, with hope and love,

--Rev. Susan

Reverend Dr. Susan Veronica Rak

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