For the next few months, our themes will explore the words and phrases of our Statement of Purpose, which we say each week when we’re together:
We journey as a family toward spiritual growth,
freedom in faith,
celebration of diversity,
commitment to action,
devotion to each other,
and the Earth.
This month, we’ll explore “Freedom in Faith”–one of the core commitments of not only our congregation, but Unitarians and Universalists throughout history and our current Association of Congregations. From the time people began arguing about religion–and who would decide which theological ideas were “right” (orthodox) or “wrong” (heresy)–there have been those who insisted that each person must have the freedom to determine for themselves what is true and right and good.
Now, centuries later, religious freedom is a hot topic again. Our Catholic neighbors use it as a rallying cry to argue that they should not be required to provide medical care that conflicts with their teachings. Religious minorities all over the world fight to be freed from the painful powers that try to control their minds, bodies, and spirits.
We are privileged, in our particular culture and context, to enjoy an incredible amount of religious freedom. Attacks on it come and go, mostly affecting the rights and lives of women and the poor among us. I sometimes wonder if we understand the value of the treasure we’ve been given. I often wonder how we might make better use, individually and collectively, of our freedom in faith. I hope this month’s explorations help deepen both our gratitude and commitment to religious freedom.