“Rose shows a great deal of personal grounding in, and commitment to, the Unitarian Universalist religious life. As a life-long UU, she deeply understands our way of religion, its complexities and confusions as well as its beauties and strengths.” -Rev. Thomas Perchlik
Living in the Tension: “to God, or not to God?”
If you are looking for someone to defend your humanism or bolster your theism, I am not for you. While I am rooted in the intelligent humanism of upper midwest Unitarian Universalism, mine eyes are open to the metaphor of God. My ministry circles around the beloved community, all the while singing of the great insight and beauty of having a sense of divinity.
That said: I do not pray to God, nor do I not pray to God.
But to be more clear, I do not frequently use the word “God” in my prayers, for it can be a bit jarring, you know? But I do preach about God, because then I can truly examine the concept in a way that helps us remain curious about how God can be a beautiful and useful metaphor that opens us to prayer, holy surrender, and peace. Ultimately, however, instead of choosing a theological stronghold, I choose to live in the tension and walk that fine line with care, intelligence, and a poetic hold on the largeness of worship. I introduce the concept of God into worship in my preaching with sensitivity and an understanding at how far-fetched it may seem. And after all, I have prayed.
I preach mostly from the Hebrew Bible and the Christian Scriptures, but not because I believe these books to have a stronger stake in truth or the most powerful language. Simply, I have seen transformation in the eyes of so many Unitarian Universalists as I offer familiar texts with a relevant and liberatory meaning. I wish to take that which has burned and turn it into balm. But, I also draw from various other scriptures, such as the Quran, the Buddhist Sutras, and the Hindu narratives when I feel well enough informed to preach from them. I have been most recently trained by Union Theological Seminary in the Bible, and in my wildest dreams I plan to one day obtain a PhD in the Hebrew Bible.