Using Your Universal Translator

Posted by T. Resnikoff // February 8th 2017 // Featured Youth, Future of Faith // no comments

A Sermon by Kadyn Frawley Watch this terrific pastoral message from Summer Seminary graduate Kayden Frawley, preached to her congregation on January 29, 2017.   Using Your Universal Translator – Transcript Good morning! I’m going to ask you all some questions. You don’t need to raise your hand when you agree, just think the answer to yourself. Question 1. How many of you have either that one relative or group of relatives who ALWAYS like to bring up religion at times where you feel it’s completely inappropriate? PAUSE Question 2. When getting ready to visit with this particular person or group of people, do you have to mentally prepare in advance what you are going…

Spiritual Practices for Privileged Fragility

Posted by Annie Gonzalez Milliken // January 26th 2017 // Guides and Tools, Issues and Trends // 4 comments

The great safety pin debate. The epic pussy hat debacle. These are just two examples of an ongoing trend in liberal circles: people (often with relative privilege) respond poorly when their well meaning actions are critiqued by others on the left (often by folks with relatively less privilege). While some lament that divisive critique is destroying the left I know that we who believe in liberation have the spiritual resources to respond well to critical feedback and move forward together. How do I know this? Because I’m an able bodied cis white woman from a middle class liberal background who has learned to respond less defensively to critique from the left over time, using spiritual practices….

Real Love is Not Nice

Posted by Annie Gonzalez Milliken // December 21st 2016 // Issues and Trends // no comments

There is a poster you can buy in the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) bookstore that says in big font “Love is Hard. Do it anyway.”  This poster, designed by Carey McDonald, UUA Outreach Director, talks about an interdependent inclusive love. This is the love we’re called to as Unitarian Universalists (UU). I believe that love is hard, and I try and try to do it anyway. I fail a lot, because I’m human. I try again. This real hard love is at the center of my faith, and because it is so sacred to me, I feel frustrated when I see people confusing what love calls us to with being nice. These days many of…

LGBTQ+ Youth Survival Guide: Trump Edition

Posted by T. Resnikoff // November 21st 2016 // Featured Youth, Guides and Tools, Issues and Trends, Social Justice // 2 comments

by Rev. Evin Carvill-Ziemer LGBTQ+ Youth Survival Guide: Trump Edition Dear beautiful, fabulous gender creative and sexually non-conforming youth and teens–all those who are queer, trans, non-binary, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and a hundred other wonderful self-proclaimed identities, My heart breaks for you. This is not the future I wanted for you. This is not the future I have been fighting for. But I also know you are strong and I want you to have the information you need to survive. Because I need you to survive! I haven’t seen a “this shit is real” missive to you yet, so here’s what I’ve got. I don’t think it’s helpful to sugar coat this. Yes, you and…

What do you need right now?

Posted by Annie Gonzalez Milliken // November 9th 2016 // Contact Us, Issues and Trends // 8 comments

What do you need right now dear ones? How are we going to get through this? Maybe you’re in shock. Maybe you’re pissed as hell. Maybe you’re weeping. Maybe you’re numb and trying to do all the normal things. Maybe you’re hiding in bed. All of these reactions are totally normal. There is nothing that makes this ok, because hate is not ok and greed is not ok and violence are not ok. Electing a president who is overtly racist, sexist, violent and endlessly greedy is not an ok thing to do. We all know these next four years won’t be ok. And yet, paradoxically, we keep going. So what do you need right now…

VIDEO: What is God? by Ella Boyer

Posted by T. Resnikoff // November 3rd 2016 // Featured Youth, Future of Faith // no comments

One assignment our Summer Seminary (#UUSumSem) program students receive is writing a 3-5 minute homily based on a prompt. On Saturday night they presented their homilies to each other, and then voted to select the five they wanted to represent their class during worship on Sunday Morning at First Unitarian Church of Oakland, CA. Here Summer Seminarian Ella Boyer asks not, “Who is God?”, but “What is God”. The answer she finds is both illuminating and inspiring. Watch now as Ella Boyer Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Summer Seminary 2016 Grad delivers her homily, “What is God?” during First Unitarian Church of Oakland, CA. Sunday Worship: Learn about Summer Seminary, a program of the UUA Office of…

VIDEO: The Irrationally Beautiful Place, by Zollie Davis-Huntley

Posted by T. Resnikoff // October 27th 2016 // Featured Youth, Future of Faith // no comments

One assignment our Summer Seminary (#UUSumSem) program students receive is writing a 3-5 minute homily based on a prompt. On Saturday night they presented their homilies to each other, and then voted to select the five they wanted to represent their class during worship on Sunday Morning at First Unitarian Church of Oakland, CA. Here Summer Seminarian Zollie Davis-Huntley examines the links between the those who hurt and those who are hurt that lead to healing. Watch now as Zollie Davis-Huntley Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Summer Seminary 2016 Grad delivers her homily, “The Irrationally Beautiful Place”, during First Unitarian Church of Oakland, CA. Sunday Worship: Learn about Summer Seminary, a program of the UUA Office of…

VIDEO: Faith and Trust – by Libby Palmer

Posted by T. Resnikoff // October 20th 2016 // Featured Youth, Future of Faith // no comments

One assignment our Summer Seminary (#UUSumSem) program students receive is writing a 3-5 minute homily based on a prompt. On Saturday night they presented their homilies to each other, and then voted to select the five they wanted to represent their class during worship on Sunday Morning at First Unitarian Church of Oakland, CA. Here Summer Seminarian Libby Palmer imagines the future of Unitarian Universalism by examining its past, and describes a vibrant movement, strengthened by faith. Watch now as Libby Palmer Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Summer Seminary 2016 Grad delivers her homily, “Faith and Trust”, during First Unitarian Church of Oakland, CA. Sunday Worship: Learn about Summer Seminary, a program of the UUA Office of…

VIDEO: Whole, Healing and Broken – by Paloma Callo

Posted by T. Resnikoff // October 13th 2016 // Featured Youth, Future of Faith // no comments

One assignment our Summer Seminary (#UUSumSem) program students receive is writing a 3-5 minute homily based on a prompt. On Saturday night they presented their homilies to each other, and then voted to select the five they wanted to represent their class during worship on Sunday Morning at First Unitarian Church of Oakland, CA. Here Summer Seminarian Paloma Callo speaks to the lament with which many youth and young adults struggle, “How do we inherit this broken world with grace?” She calls for other generations to hold the hands of the younger generations as they work to shape and reshape the world that was given to them. Watch now as Paloma Callo Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA)…

Adulting is Hard – by Kayla Parker

Posted by T. Resnikoff // October 12th 2016 // Issues and Trends, Stories and Voices // no comments

Adulting Is Hard by Kayla Parker When I was twenty-five, I started graduate school and my Dad had a stroke. Doctors told us he should have died. He is still alive, though forever changed. When I was twenty-six, my ex came out as trans and I felt awful because I thought if I had been more supportive he might have come out earlier. That same year, the Black Lives Matter movement called on me to face my white privilege with an urgency I had never felt before, and continues to do so today. When I was twenty-seven, one of my best friends successfully fought off an attempted assault by a stranger who broke into her…