What does it mean to belong? What belongs to you? And who do you belong to? As I was exploring these questions and reading all about belonging to prepare for our time together in September, a song popped into my head. Can you guess which one?
… Make new friends, but keep the old, one is silver and the other’s gold. A circle’s round, it has no end. That’s how long I’d like to be your friend…
Where and when did you first hear this song? Did you just learn it now and have to go look it up? Did reading the lyrics bring you back to camp this past year? Or maybe, did those lyrics transport you to a time so long ago you’re not sure how much time it’s been exactly since you heard the song for the first time?
As the lyrics floated through my memory I turned them over and over in my head. Which friendship is silver? Which is gold? The circle is round but how do we become a part of the circle in the first place – where is our beginning?
And that’s just it. My friend and fellow religious educator, Lenore Bejare-Dukes pointed out that “the song doesn’t say which friendship is silver and which one is gold. The implication is there in rhyme and word order but there’s space for us to find our own answer to this song.” As UUs we look for the meaning in the space between.
This year we’re leaning into the space between. The space between “being” and “longing.” What a great word for us to start our year with, “Belonging.” For some of us the space between has felt really really wide these past few years. For some of us that space has been closer than they knew it in past seasons of their lives. For others, you’re coming to our space for the first time.
Our Unitarian Universalist faith is created and re-created by the friendships we value and how we choose to connect with each other. Those friendships are what’s guiding our religious education programming choices this year. If you’d like to find out more here’s more on our intentions (link).
In all that we belong to and in all that we do this church year, may we seek with open minds, may we nurture with loving hearts and may we serve with helping hands. Blessed be and Amen.