Story Week 3: Stories remind us who we are as anti-racists

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

STORY: Spotify Playlist / Youtube Playlist

At Church: 

We learned that we tell stories to help us fight racism and to celebrate all colors of people. Our faith teaches us that stories and storytelling is a very important part of fighting racism. For instance, racial justice leaders remind us that the work – and story – of anti-racism is never over; we are always in the middle of the story. Racial justice leaders also remind us that we need to reclaim and re-tell ALL the stories of our history so everyone’s experience is honored and so our country lives in a true story (even if it is a painful one to accept). And we are also reminded that there are things we can do to alter and interrupt hurtful stories by changing people’s minds, perspectives and ways of treating each other.

Morning Time:

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

Consider these thoughts from Kim McManus~  “Your heartache is someone else’s hope. If you make it through, somebody else is going to make it through. Tell your story.”

Drive Time: 

Listen to: Wake Up in America rendition by Lea Morris

Weekly Chalice Lighting:

With humility and courage born of our history, we are called as Unitarian Universalists to build the Beloved Community where all souls are welcome as blessings, and the human family lives whole and reconciled. With this vision in our hearts and minds, we light our chalice.

~UUA leadership council

Meal Time: 

Discuss: Whose stories do we need to hear more of right now, in this moment? Where are those voices to be found?

Bed Time:

Read: No Mirrors in My Nana’s House by Ysaye M Barnwell

Family Time:  

The Stories of Flags and Other Symbols

This month we are exploring how important stories are in our lives, and this week we encourage you to talk about how stories help us think about and deal with racism.

Look at different flags (either in your community or online) to think about the stories they tell and the people and ideas they represent.  For example, the Black Lives Matter symbol/flag challenges and invites all of us to pay attention to how racism is sadly still doing a lot of harm today. It’s a way of helping people understand that while we have made some important progress in fighting racism, the work isn’t done. There’s a professor, author and racial justice leader named Ibram X. Kendi who says, “Being antiracist is a journey.”

Discuss whether flags tell a story that is finished or if they tell a story that is ongoing; consider the meaning of your answers. For example, in the work of Black Lives Matter and dismantling racism, we are somewhere in the middle of the story, AND in our lifetimes may remain in the middle of the story. Racism is something we all need to work on together. Antiracism is a story we need to keep telling and living.

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.