RR1215The end is nigh. That’s the theme for this month. It’s a little different than the December focus in other years. Most often, as a religious leader, I spend time walking us through the rich pageantry of the world’s darkness and light celebrations and observations. This year, though, I feel it’s worth reflecting on the end of things. The end of one year. The end of life. The end, even, of things we love and value.

2015 has been a tough year in many respects. We’ve seen increasingly shocking rhetoric and violent acts; we’ve watched as marginalized people find their voices and insist on a new way forward. It is a time of upheaval and change, and if we have been comfortable in our own lives and our personal privilege, it is realistic to assume we may have to be uncomfortable in a landscape that is shifting toward greater equality and new ways of doing things. So it always has been.

In a landscape where any public figure can call for the registering of particular religious persons and be lauded for it, where the shooting of children and medical providers, unarmed teenagers or women seeking help has become normalized, where our country seems to want to respond to violence by turning away the victims of that violence…this is a world which needs an engaged and centered liberal religion. To respond, we need to make peace with change. We need a practice of accepting the end of some things, and new ways of making room for others. We need one another in order to be brave, to seek sound choices, and to stand up for the better world we envision. It is in this spirit I encourage you to love wildly, be very present to one another and the Holy, and to enter into the seasons of darkness and light with full embrace.

See you in church –

Rev. Audette