From Ministers

Thoughts on hope and intention from our intern, Thom Thomas

I have just been working on my sermon for January 7, after spending some time working on the Soul Matters packet for the Soul Matters discussion group that just started. I notice that the theme for December is Hope, and for January it is Intention. I realize that intersection is a pretty good description of … Continued

Thoughts on stress and strength from our intern, Thom Thomas

Thom Thomas I have been thinking a lot this week about family. Specifically, I have been thinking about how families deal with stress. A church I know (not this one) has recently suffered from an email storm. You know what I mean. Someone forgot the first commandment of email—“Thou shalt not hit send when you … Continued

Welcome Thom Thomas!

This year, we welcome our new ministry student, Thom Thomas! He will complete a two-year, part-time learning experience as part of his Master of Divinity program at Meadville Lombard Theological School, the UU seminary here in Chicago. Under Meadville’s model, his first year is spent as student minister. First U is a teaching congregation thanks … Continued

November: Abundance

November is often a time of abundance. The final harvests come in; even in the city we can see the bounty in the grocery store and farmers’ markets. While the natural world starts to fade away to prepare for the coming winter, holiday festivities begin. We are surrounded by abundance, yet we know that it’s … Continued

Stronger in the Broken Places

This essay by Rev. Teri originally appeared on the Quest for Meaning website—along with a podcast. A famous rabbi once said the truth will set you free. Trouble is, the truth is truth, whether we like it or not. The truth is that we will all break in this life. That’s how we learn to … Continued

Called to Prophetic Voice

Rev. Teri writes: A prophet isn’t so much about someone who can fore-tell, but someone who can truth-tell. A prophet is someone who connects the dots between what is and what can be. You can do that. I can do that. We can do that together. It is tempting to want to wait for a … Continued

Realism, Grief, and Hope

Rev. Teri writes: Walter Brueggemann, esteemed scholar of the Hebrew prophets, says a congregation is called to practice three things: 1) Realism in the face of ideology.… 2) Grief while the world is in denial. 3) Hope when the world is in despair. As someone who lives with chronic pain, I have to practice when … Continued

Free and Responsible

Rev. David writes, It’s a basic principle: we are a people who believe in “a free and responsible search for truth and meaning.” Our tradition explicitly names as a source “the guidance of reason and the results of science.” Not “truthiness.” Not “post-truth.” The one statue in our building is Joseph Priestly, over the door, … Continued