Not just a building… Reflections from your ABD Chairs
What is a church? It has been a while since we have been together in our beautiful Sanctuary. Its simple but graceful lines, the way it fits in with and is open to surrounding nature, the way the light beams in and plays upon the walls and pulpit and tapestries, the way its walls resonate with the sounds of our Choir and organ – these are all things we miss dearly. So also, our magnificent Parish Hall building and its spaces where we come together to worship, learn, share food, share stories… memories. These structures are surely at the heart of Westminster.
But, as 2020 rolls along towards 2021 and a potentially lethal virus continues to circulate in our communities, we are forced to continue as a “virtual church” for the time being. More and more, even as there are some aspects of this new mode of being that we abhor, being present to one another in new, technological ways, dawns the realization that our church is not just a building. As beloved as our structures are, the essence of our church is its people and its message of hope. The people who founded it over 190 years ago, the people who (left their beloved buildings behind) and moved several times over its history, the people who, about 100 years ago, weathered a similar threat during the 1918 pandemic… But most significantly, the people who comprise it today, who share common purpose, who affirm allegiance to the core values of our UU faith, who live out its mission of welcoming, connecting and serving the world, and who, despite current adversities, are carrying forward this mission of hope and wider embrace towards a better tomorrow.
Our principles, our history, our traditions. These are the shared foundations that unite us and animate us to move towards a world of greater justice, greater understanding, greater love. As always, and as never before, the church is its people; united in values, allied in purpose, and unbowed by challenge of physical separation. Our people, our community will preserver. With our traditions and values supporting us, standing on the shoulders of those who preceded us, we will carry the flame forward towards a better life and better world… until we meet again. And we will meet again… we will return again to our beloved Sanctuary and Parish House.
As we contemplate an uncertain future, our 2021 pledge drive gives us the opportunity to reflect on the core values that bring us together and the common purposes that underlie our community. A church exists and succeeds only to the extent that its people believe in it and support its mission. When you make your pledge for 2021, can you help as you have in the past? Can you do more… knowing that we expect to lose significant revenues from rentals and fundraisers? Can you dig even deeper still, knowing that some of our folks may be coping with employment or income loss and not be able to sustain their past level of giving? Please think about what Westminster means to you and be ready to commit what you can. Whatever you can do will help and will be appreciated. More than a building, our church is its people; together we can weather this storm and realize a brighter tomorrow. Thank you.
To facilitate your pledging, we have 4 options:
- Mail back your pledge card at the bottom of the pledge letter
- Go to org and look for the Pledge Now button at the top of the home page
- Pledge by email by emailing your pledge to Jan Searles, [email protected]
- Pledge by phone by calling Jan Searles, 401-885-5073