Impossible Things & Wonderful Possibilities

Impossible Things & Wonderful Possibilities

There’s something about this time of year that always feels like it is full of possibilities. I know not everyone feels this way, but I am naturally oriented (through years of practice) towards thinking of September as a time of new beginnings. And thus, it follows: a time full of possibilities. We are bustling around at Unity Temple, getting everything ready for our programming for children and young people to launch, happily anticipating seeing so many beloved faces and spirits among us regularly again.

I realized, in the midst of all this, that there are two kinds of possibilities that I have been pondering. The first is the one where a new group of kids will arrive at something that is a benchmark in their growing up at Unity Temple. A new group of 8th grade kids will be participating in our year long most in-depth Our Whole Lives values based sexuality education program on Sunday evenings. Our fourth graders will be exploring their Unitarian Universalist identity and in March, they’ll be participating in our chalice ceremony. And so on. New cohorts encountering familiar traditions will bring to life one kind of new possibilities.

And. There are ways that we always adjust and adapt in our congregation for all kinds of reasons. We did it time and time again during the various phases of the pandemic. When we couldn’t do our in-person Christmas Eve pageant in 2020, we collected photos from previous years, and it turned into a new and wonderful reenactment of the past. When we couldn’t gather safely indoors last fall with our younger kids, we invited people to come to neighborhood playgrounds, and we connected that way. The list goes on, some more successful than others. Now, as we move into a phase that feels and looks like the before-times, but isn’t, we will need to keep ourselves open to totally new possibilities or ways of doing things. I am looking forward to what we come up with.

As I contemplate the six month sabbatical time that begins October 1st, I feel so incredibly grateful for those many of you who will share your gifts in new and different and deeper ways during this time. I am also incredibly grateful for the spaciousness of time and freedom from regular and structured responsibilities that will allow me to learn and grow in new ways. More possibilities.

We are all well aware that Unity Temple Unitarian Universalist Congregation is in the midst of many transitions; though this is true more broadly as well; congregational life all over is shifting, many ideas and practices in our world are evolving. It’s a great time for imagination and possibility everywhere we turn.

I was reminded just recently of this great quote from Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland. “‘There’s no use in trying’, said Alice; ‘one can’t believe impossible things.’ ‘I dare say you haven’t had much practice,’ said the Queen. ‘When I was your age, I always did it for half an hour a day. Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.’”

May this be a time for each of us of hopeful new beginnings, impossible things and wonderful possibilities.