The past two Sundays, I led worship services at two more Unitarian Universalist churches, both in New Hampshire – one in Charlestown and the other in Franklin. And both of them continued with the theme of Sacred Activism that I talked about in late February at the St. Johnsbury Vermont church.
At the Charlestown church 8 days ago, I focused on how we can be sacred activists in our own communities, because the church is very keen on becoming more involved in the needs and life of their community. I first invited the congregation to reflect on questions such as: Where is the passion in the community? What is its soul? What is this community about? What is crying out here to be heard, born, or strengthened? I asked them, in the words of Sacred Activism founder Andrew Harvey, to “follow their heartbreak.”
I then led the congregation in a guided visualization, seeing themselves as the body of the church, then imagining that body start to come to life, to move, to begin to create ripples outward, and reaching other people, in various situations and needs. Some might be seeking spiritual guidance free from religious doctrine, some trying to deal with a problem, such as drugs, homelessness, depression, or abuse. Some are seeking to be with others in the community to socialize, or to celebrate, and others want to learn something. Perhaps the elderly, perhaps young people, and many others. In the visualization, I encourage the congregation to invite all of them in, to meet people where they are, staying with them and listening to what they have to say. To find our work as sacred activists, we must let those ripples keep moving around, to keep connecting, while we do the inner work on deepening our compassion and healing whatever heart or soul wounds keep us locked in ourselves, and prevent us from truly loving and serving others.