Unitarian Universalist Congregation
of Northern Chautauqua

companionship on life's sacred journey

If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.
— Wayne Dyer

Message From Our Minister

From the Heart

Recently I’ve used words like this to open worship for our Unitarian Universalist congregation:

“Welcome to this, our community of radical hope. Here we hope and pray for the Beloved Community – a world made fair with all her people free. We strive to realize this in our own lives, in our presence with one another, and in the broader communities around us.”

This hope I speak of is “radical” in the original Latin sense of the word. To take a radical approach to something means to get at the root of it, or to deal with the fundamentals of it.

This radical hope is religious, because we are considering the roots of what is most deeply and fundamentally worthy of our loyalty and commitment. This is so whether we are committed to God, or Goddess, or the Tao, or Truth, or Justice, or one of many other expressions of the fundamental. We are willing to set aside lesser things, if needed, for the sake of our deepest commitments.

What is radical hope like? Well, many Unitarian Universalists have come to our congregations from different religious traditions. These searchers were and are motivated by one form of radical hope – the hope that a community might exist consistent with their beliefs.

Or consider the process of becoming a Welcoming Congregation in our faith. This is a congregational process grounded in radical hope for communities open to all, no matter whom they love or how they identify their gender.

There are lots of other examples of ways we can live in radical hope. In the coming year I will be exploring different aspects of radical hope, in sermons, in workshops, and in our lives together.

You can learn more about radical hope here.

Love to all,
Rev. George Buchanan