Minister’s Message – Winter

Dear Members and Friends of UU Manchester,

Blessings of Love and Peace to you all!

We are well into the holiday season now, post-Thanksgiving and Diwali, entering Advent which began on Dec. 3 and Hanukkah which began on Thursday evening (Dec. 7), while also anticipating Yule and Christmas! May all the lights of the season carry Hope into our lives!

Many of us experience this as an exciting and busy time of year, filled with the joy of gathering with family and friends to celebrate, exchange gifts, share meals, and other festivities to brighten this darkened and fallow season and the end of our calendar year.
We also know that many among us struggle at this time of year for various reasons: perhaps one’s family is not the warm, loving experience commonly reflected in movies and marketing; perhaps someone is away from family and unable to travel or host, feeling lonely and isolated; perhaps this time of year invites or complicates challenges for our mental health – deepening depression and other experiences unseen by friends and family.
Quite possibly and often, those of us who are celebrating are also ones who are struggling – behind the scenes, in our quiet moments, trying to meet all the expectations and promises we have created.

Know that you are not alone.
Know that you are loved – by those you hold close and dear, by your friends in our church community, and by me.

In all of the rush for celebrating and gifting, remember to also celebrate yourself for the amazing person that you are, just for being You.

We are all witnessing the pain and hurt and injustices of the world, sometimes also feeling some or all of those to differing degrees. Remember, then, in your gift-giving to also give to yourself – permission to grieve, permission to rest, permission to say “no thank you”, permission to forget, permission to make a mess…permission to be human.
You can do all of the things that are important to you, just possibly not all at once.

This winter holiday season, my friends, remember that you are Sacred and Beloved and Worthy of all of the Love and Peace in the world.

In faith,
Rev. Kali