Houses of hope

From the Heart

My Unitarian Universalist colleague Reverend Naomi King calls us to cultivate: “cities of refuge, houses of hope, and gardens of peace.”

She issues this call in the face of those who would say our predicaments are overwhelming. She believes we can almost always work together to realize some small part of our vision.

When we are feeling our own personal losses, even this promise can seem hollow. Where is hope when someone we care for deeply has died, or a good friend has turned away from us?

In times like this, I believe it is right for our fellow congregants to let us know much they care, and right for them to hold us in this care while we grieve. We need the assurance of this care, even as our pain and despair still go on.

And I believe, with time, some measure of hope may be restored to us. Our beloved one is still gone, and the pain may remain. And with that hope will begin to flow back into our lives.

I’ve often said it is not the hope we bring to congregational life, but rather the hope we find. And this is a large part of what we mean when we speak of “houses of hope.”

With love to all,
Rev. George Buchanan

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