Pastor Fred’s Page
A Thought from Pastor Fred for July 4, 2022:
On this National Day in the U.S. I want to say that the nation of the U.S. is a shining example of the Reformation principle: Simul justus et peccator, Sinner and saint at the same time.
June 27, 2022
A Few Words about the Fall of Roe v. Wade
Here is something a lot of people are not thinking about today: Abortion rights in many states include the right to necessary medical care.
The most basic loss for many women will be the right to D&C, dilation and curettage. For many women, it is a necessary medical procedure following a miscarriage. The ignorance and lack of compassion of many men on this subject is breathtaking to me.
It’s also deeply personal.
If Roe had fallen soon after it was decided, with all the present implications against good medical care for all women, my daughter might not have been born.
Her mother had a miscarriage between the successful pregnancies that brought our son and daughter into this world. She had a D&C, and she recovered safely and successfully. Without the D&C, she might not have survived the experience. The least I can say is that it might not have been possible for her to conceive a child, ever again.
I could say a lot more, but I’ll stop here for now.
Here is a link to an article that substantiates the things I have said in these few words: https://www.mother.ly/life/motherly-stories/roe-v-wade-overturned-miscarriage/
Here is a link to another article, this one with a deeply personal, sad story:
June 13, 2022
I have some thoughts regarding our congregational meeting yesterday, June 12.
Our frustrations reached a peak at meeting time. No one was able to access our Zoom account because of technological challenges with internet service at the Harding Center. There will be more news coming soon about new opportunities for us to look at our future together.
As a result of the meeting, I am filled with new hope for the direction we will take together.
I have three thoughts that feed my hope:
First, I felt great love among us, for each other and for our beloved community.
Second, many people stepped up and volunteered to give their best efforts in making our work and our witness together strong. At the same time, deep gratitude was expressed for so many of our members who are and have been offering their abilities to serve the whole.
Third, I could feel the strong commitment to keep us together in all the ways we are able for the good of us all.
With those three thoughts – love, volunteering, and commitment – I can see and feel a bright future for us together. It will be up to us to shape that future and make the most of it.
From Tracey Sutton and me:
Where do we go from here?
NIUU Semi-Annual Meeting
The time has come for us to re-envision how we manage all that is NIUU. How we meet, how we organize, and we move forward. Please join us for our semi-annual meeting on June 12th at 10:30am on Zoom or in person at the Harding Center. We will not be having a Sunday Service prior to this meeting as it will require our full attention and participation. The NIUU board requests that you consider the questions: Where do we go from here? What is required of us as a UU congregation? What does it mean to you to be a member of this beloved community? How do we continue to seek truth in love and support for one another? Together we will explore these questions and share our unique perspectives.
My personal story from Carla Dvoracek’s beautiful service on May 22:
On Palm Sunday of 1957 I was five years old. I would turn six near the end of that summer. My father had an aching shoulder, so he stayed home from church. I stayed with him, while my mother went on to church. I was alone with my father when he died suddenly of a massive heart attack.
Needless to say, my life changed tremendously that day.
In many ways, courage was born in me on that day. I had new circumstances and many changes to deal with. My Kindergarten teacher took me into her home that night. I awoke the next morning to the sound and sight of a bird singing just outside my window. The birdsong brought great hope to me, and I have found that hope and courage go together.
Many kinds of changes came into my life in those days. Hope and courage strengthened by love were my mainstays. I believed that I could feel my father’s presence near me, and I still believe the same. My faith was strengthened, and I’m sure that the experience contributed greatly to my career choice of ministry. The kind of minister I have sought to be, trying to accept people where and as they are, was also a result of my early introduction to a need for courage.
A major and unexpected change came about. I spent that summer with my mother’s family in the mountains of North Carolina. To get there, I flew by myself across the country. It took courage to kiss my mother goodbye and get on that airplane, but with the help of kind flight attendants, the trip wasn’t nearly as scary as it might have been. I was met at the airport in North Carolina by loving family members, and my courage in setting out was well rewarded. I had a wonderful, memorable summer on the family farm, and I came to think of that place as home fully as much as any place I have ever lived.
The most important theme of courage as I needed and learned it was that courage would always be impossible without the help of others.
Pastor Fred’s previous sermons can be found by clicking on this link: http://spirithand.blogspot.com/