Rev. Eric Banner - Associate Minister

A Monkey’s Uncle

We believe that all things are related, and that everything that is came from what was before. If new species emerge from existing ones, then maybe we really are a monkey’s uncle. What does it mean to be a church where we believe that evolution, … read more.

More Than the Sum of the Parts

It’s often thought that if we can just understand the parts, we can understand what they make. But some things are only visible if you stand far enough back to see something new. What else could we learn, if we cast our view-field wider still?

In Tension

EB White spoke of being torn between the desire to save or savor the world. Life is full of moments that ask us to choose, but sometimes the greatest calling is to live in the tension, instead of resolving it too soon.

Saving What We Love

If Theodore Parker pointed to the permanent and the transient in religion, then he also pointed to something else. Sometimes we hold on tight to what we love, and strangle it in the process. Sometimes saving what we love means remembering what is essential, what … read more.

Courageous Democracy

In these odd numbered years, it can be easy to imagine nothing important is happening at the ballot. But a tradition that grounds itself in democracy in our congregations and society at large is called to show up and engage in elections whenever they are … read more.

95 Theses

It was 500 years ago this month that Martin Luther nailed his list of disputes with the church he served to the door. As religious descendents of that act of independence and free thought, what might we learn from the courage it took to take … read more.

Humanist Ethics

Far too many people believe that the only thing that keeps us good is fear of punishment. But a positive ethics doesn’t depend on eternal punishment, so much as an ethic of love and justice for all.

What Do We Want?

Almost 100 years ago a new religious movement was clearly emerging in this country, and Unitarians were in the middle of it. While humanists are often identified by what they aren’t, from very early on humanists have been sharing a positive view of the world, … read more.

Natural Religion

As we spend the month unpacking what it means that we’re a church deeply rooted in humanism, the first question we have to ask is where does knowledge come from. And the answer to that question brings our tradition right to the doors of natural … read more.

Father’s Day

If Mother’s Day is a high holy day in many churches, and many homes, Father’s Day can feel like something of an afterthought. And truthfully, a lot of us struggle with what it means to be a father, when the 1950’s nuclear family model doesn’t … read more.

Managing Risk

We have all heard people encourage us to take risks, to dream big, to go beyond our comfort zone and achieve what might otherwise seem unattainable. Good advice as far as it goes, but isn’t there a reason we reach for safety? Isn’t there a … read more.

Risks Worth Taking

Theologian Sharon Welch wrote a book years ago titled, “A Feminist Ethic of Risk.” In it, she suggests that we avoid risk because we’ve been taught that failure or unintended consequences are to be avoid, almost above all else. But much of how the world will turn … read more.

Lunchboxes

Years ago I came across a powerful set of interviews with people about the connection between what they carried in their lunchboxes and how the world saw them. Lunchbox moments were when the lines were clearly drawn of insiders and outsiders. Our identity is not … read more.