Democracy is our theme for the month of November. We, the member congregations of the Unitarian Universalist Association, covenant to affirm and promote seven principles. Our fifth principle is the right of conscience and the use of the democratic process.
Democracy is a fitting theme for November when our country has elections on November 2 and our church has a congregational meeting on November 7.
The U.S. democracy and Unitarian Universalist democracy share common roots. The Mayflower Compact was a written agreement composed by a consensus of the new Settlers arriving at New Plymouth in November of 1620. In Plymouth, Massachusetts, stands their church. The sign in front reads First Parish Plymouth (Unitarian Universalist), founded 1620.
The settlers had traveled across the ocean on the ship Mayflower, which was anchored in what is now Provincetown Harbor near Cape Cod, Massachusetts. The Mayflower Compact was drawn up to support the general good of the settlement.
Our congregation, too, has a covenant that was adopted unanimously by the members on May 20, 2007. Our covenant also supports the common good.
We covenant to build a religious community guided by love
and sustained by respectful relationships. Believing that building
healthy relationships is a spiritual practice, we aim to listen appreciatively,
speak with care, express gratitude, honor our differences,
and assume good intentions. We endeavor to communicate directly,
honestly, and compassionately, particularly when we are in conflict.
When we hurt one another, we will try to forgive, make amends,
and reconnect in a spirit of love. In celebration of the common purpose
that unites us, we will do our best to abide by this covenant.
As we explore democracy and the common good this month, we’ll look at immigration issues in Sunday services and in reading and discussing the book: The Death of Josseline: Immigration Stories from the Arizona-Mexico Borderlands by Margaret Regan. The book is available for purchase at the Simple Gifts book table. We’ll discuss the book on Thursday, November 11, 7:30–9:00 p.m.
One of our hymns (words by Bruce Findlow) sings, For all that is our life we sing our thanks and praise; for all life is a gift which we are called to use to build the common good and make our own days glad.
Let us give thanks and use our lives for the common good.
P.S. You are invited to come watch Muhammad: Legacy of a Prophet, a documentary film on the history of Islam and American Muslims on Tuesday, November 16, 7:00 – 9:15 p.m. in the Fireside Room.
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