Story Week 1: Stories remind us who we are as UUs

Throughout our abundant lives, we can find simple and quick ways to connect our learning and growth at church to our lives at home. 

Spotify Playlist / Youtube Playlist

At Church

We learned that our church has stories we like to tell. Story is what keeps events and history alive, and even more importantly, story is what enables events to become shared history, the glue that binds the community together and helps it learn and grow. UU congregations share a lot of attributes, but at the same time, no two UU communities are the same.

Morning Time:

Loving Kindness Metta Meditation or STORY: What Will You Make?

Consider these words by Richard Rohr~ 

“Many of us had thought that myth meant “not true,” when in fact the older meaning of myth is precisely “always true!” 

Weekly Chalice Lighting:

We Unitarian Universalists don’t drink from our chalice. Instead, we use it to hold the flame. The circle of the chalice helps keep the fire small. The flame doesn’t blind us. It doesn’t burn us. It gives us light, so we can see all the different things in the universe: even the invisible ones, because the Unitarian Universalist flame is a light of learning.

The flaming chalice is a symbol of learning and of love. It’s our symbol: the symbol of Unitarian Universalism.

~By Elizabeth Harding

Meal Time: 

Discuss: How would you describe the story of Unitarian Universalism? A hero story? Detective story? Love story? How would you describe your own life story?  

Drive Time:

Listen to: This Little Light of Mine rendition by Lea Morris

Bed Time: 

Read: Stuck by Oliver Jeffers and The Book with No Pictures by BJ Novak

Family Time:  

A Story of Particular Beginnings 

Astro-physicist Dr. Chanda Prescod-Weinstein’s book, The Disordered Cosmos: A Journey into Dark Matter, Spacetime, and Dreams Deferred, tells the story of the forces at work in our universe through the lens of Black feminism. For her book, she commissioned artist Shanequa Gay to create a painting called, “We Were Always Scientists,” seen behind Prescod-Weinstein in the image at the top of this interview

Invitation: Listen to this sample from the audio book of The Disordered Cosmos. As you listen, spend some time being present with art of Shanequa Gay. Afterward, in a journal, sketchbook, or just a scrap of paper, write or draw your impressions and reactions. Share one thing you learned about the experience with a friend. If your means allow, consider making a donation to the organization African American Women in Physics.

Blessing of STORY

Blessed are the playwrights, script writers, poets, authors of all kinds on page, stage, screen, and across airwaves, for through them, we know story.

Blessed are the bookmakers, the pamphlet staplers, the blank notebook fillers, the digital creators and curators, for through them, we know story.

Blessed are the illustrators–painters, drawers, paper and fiber artists, photographers–for through them, we know story.

Blessed are the stage performers–actors, dancers, comics, magicians, singers, acrobats, and musicians–for through them, we know story.

Blessed are the interpreters, the caption transcribers, the audio readers, for through them, we know story.

Blessed are the translators, within and across generations, for through them, we know story.

Blessed are the story keepers and storytellers, those who make space in mind and heart for the stories that teach, that sustain, that warn, that spread wisdom. Like seedbanks, they keep safe the germ of who we once were, and who we may yet be.

And blessed are the listeners, those of us who take the nourishment of stories into our very selves, we who let stories change us, who ask the question that begets all great sequels and other imagined futures: “And then what happened?” 

-Teresa Honey Youngblood

Monthly Meditations

Creative Visualization: Loving Kindness Metta Meditation

In the stories we tell about families, there is often a thread of love. Families come in all shapes and sizes, but at the center of them all is love!   So to honor the love we get from our families, let’s spread and share it with others through this metta meditation on love.

Centering: Let’s now get into our meditation positions.

  • Sit comfortably in your chair or on the floor.
  • Put your hands on your lap or on your knees.
  • Sit up nice and tall.
  • Focus your eyes in front of you or close them.
  • Find your breath moving in your body by taking in one breath through your nose and then slowly breathing it out through your mouth.

Loving Kindness Metta Meditation

Repeat after me:

  • (“I” round)
    • May I be happy/ May I be happy.
    • May I be peaceful/ May I be peaceful.
    • May I be filled with love/May I be filled with love.
  • (“You” round)
    • May you be happy…
  • (“We” round)
    • May we be happy…

Sing it as a song, by Betsy Rose, at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RU_Vj0kytFo

Mindful Moments with Lea about STORY: What Will You Make?

  • Remind the child(ren) about the importance of calming ourselves so we can better focus on each other and our time together.
  • Tell them that a special friend named Lea has written a song for us to learn and it is a song that teaches us something important about this month’s theme: we have the opportunity to write our own stories.
  • Center the child(ren) before playing the video.
  • After the video, talk and listen with your child to discover all the things you heard together.