Sian's Shenanigans (Page 2)

Sian's Shenanigans (Page 2)

Reverend Sian Wiltshire, Minister

By all means reach out and say hello! I can be reached by email, revsian@ocuuc.org, or by church phone at (714) 556-2882 (x302). Mondays are my day off, but I’m generally at the church during normal business hours T-Th and happy to meet with people at a time that is convenient to both of us during other times of the week.

~Rev. Sian

Liberation

We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. While King meant this to describe the justice issues of our times, it has a broader truth to it. He’s speaking about our interdependence. During this time of self-quarantining, we are finding that liberation or freedom isn’t just about “whatever I want to do.” Rather, it’s liberating ourselves from the illusion…

Wisdom

As Unitarian Universalists, we draw upon six sources of wisdom. If you look at that list, you might think (like I sometimes joke) that we have everything in there, but the kitchen sink! But you might point out, that there might be some contradictions among these sources. For example, if we draw from wisdom of world religions, what if our own experience differs from what has been written down in those venerable faith traditions? If you want to know if something…

Resilience

People often ask me “how long shall I grieve?” as if there is a certain timetable that I could give them.  And I always tell them, “There is no timetable. You’ll grieve as long as you grieve.” What, I think, people are really asking me is: “How long do I have to go through this pain?” No one wants to feel the pain of grief, or any other difficult emotion. Resilience is about allowing ourselves to feel those difficult emotions…

Integrity builds better relationships

When I was a teenager lied a lot. Mostly little things: Little white lies… sometimes making people feel good (and then me!); exaggerations that made me feel smarter, meant to impress; leaving out an important piece of information for a parent’s decision, so I could get my way. I figured if everyone else did it, then why shouldn’t I?And what was the harm if they made me and others feel good? The problem is that there really are no good…

Awe and Reverence

Have you ever felt awe? What does it feel like to you? When and where have you felt it? Some describe awe as a kind of fear (Its even related to the Scandinavian word for fear). It’s defined as an overwhelming sense of fear (mixed with admiration), produced by encountering something beyond ourselves. Awe is often used to describe God, if one exists. I don’t know about you, but fear is not something that I want to feel a God.…

The Importance of Attention

My father was a complete luddite (someone who does not understand technology); my twin sister, Regan, is a complete geek and went on to be an IT professional. My father valued higher education; my twin sister (ironically the smartest of all of us siblings) never finished college. You can imagine then that my father had a hard time relating to my sister. But one of the fondest memories I have of my father, was when he tried to understand her…

CREATING THE BELOVED COMMUNITY

Unitarian Universalism is all about belonging. That’s what creating the Beloved Community is all about, too. It’s about making sure that each person can find a place here, if they so choose – regardless of what they believe or who they are. That’s a tall order! It means that everyone (and I mean everyone) must play a part in creating that atmosphere. It requires a great deal of self-awareness, a desire to come from a place of love, curiosity and…

Expectation and Faith

This month’s worship has two themes: Expectation and Faith. And of course, it got me thinking about how those two interplay together: What do we expect from our faith tradition of Unitarian Universalism? Is it there to solve all of our problems? Will going to church make me a better person? What do I expect from my church? From Unitarian Universalism? I love this Faith tradition. It’s definitely for me. But it’s not perfect. And no Faith Tradition is. Like…

Integrity

When I was a teenager lied a lot. Mostly little things: Little white lies… sometimes making people feel good (and then me!); exaggerations that made me feel smarter, meant to impress; leaving out an important piece of information for a parent’s decision, so I could get my way. I figured if everyone else did it, then why shouldn’t I? And what was the harm if they made me and others feel good? The problem is that there really are no…

Sanctuary

It seems very timely that the October worship theme is Sanctuary! For here we are holding a capital campaign for building a new sanctuary. This theme, however, really doesn’t have anything to do with building a building… Or does it? A sanctuary is a place of refuge and safety. I believe whole heartedly that this is what we are building. We are building a place where you are free to hold the hand of the one you love, a place…

Vision in Worship

Every week I have a personal “to-do” that pops up on Mondays, my day off: “Do some visioning.” It’s a reminder to me to not lose sight of where I want to go in life and what I want for this church. I admit, there are some Mondays that I don’t get to it. But it’s a reminder. I sit down and think about who I want to be, as a person and as a minister, and then I try…

Taking Care of Our Souls

There is an island near Seattle that has a kind of magical effect on me. Whenever I go there, I find that as soon as I touch the ground, a feeling of calm comes over me: my whole body relaxes and I feel grounded. The place is called “Whidbey Island” and somehow, someway it feeds my soul. Have you ever felt that sense of calm? Maybe when you went away on a vacation and looked out over the ocean? Or…