I just returned home from a wonderful Easter Service at the First Unitarian Society of Milwaukee. We celebrated the return of spring and the promise of summer, the renewal of hope and resurrection in every day life and the religious traditions from which Unitarian Universalism developed. There was no picture of Christ on the cross. The Senior Minister, the Rev. Drew Kennedy, delivered a sermon that would have horrified those who believe that Bible is the literal truth.
He spoke of the myths that have become associated with the death of Jesus and his ministry. And he applied the vision of being crucified, descending into hell and being reborn to the story of a young man living with AIDS struggling to come out to his family in his last days on earth. The closing hymn was one of my favorites, Bring Many Names. I love this song which I wrote a blog about because it humanizes the concept of God as a being that may be male, female, young or old, like us. I never heard of an old aching God when I was growing up. And I’m not sure how I would have reacted, too.
There is a sense of irony in my finding church so meaningful. Especially since I resisted any efforts of my family to instill Christianity in me. With the Unitarian Universalists we can go out and change the world and find support for our beliefs. We are challenged to explore new ideas. And none that that, pass the money and check your brains at the door stuff. We bring many names to the things we believe.
That is why I left the church this morning excited, hearing a hymn and wanting to explore what I had found. So, keep all that Jesus died for your sins crap, because I’m not buying it. I find meaning in hope for my struggle tosurvive.