A New Year

Greetings to All,

It is with great pleasure and excitement that I look forward to the next year that I will serve as president of Buckman Bridge Unitarian Universalist Church. Roughly five years ago, I became a member of this congregation. In this time, I have experienced and grown so much within my beloved faith of Unitarian Universalism. I live my principles day in and day out. Even when compassion in human relationships is in short supply. Even when I observe our faith not fully meeting the needs of our impoverished, differently abled, and POCI (people of color and indigenous) brothers and sisters. I continue because I believe that our faith is strong enough to do what is just as opposed to what is easy.

Currently, our faith is at a crossroads on several key issues regarding accessibility and race relations. When you are at crossroads, it is important to take time to ask the difficult questions. Do we continue to move forward with business as usual, to avoid conflict, hoping that no will notice our inaction? Do we go left and decide to do the difficult work that comes with confronting elitist, patriarchal, white supremacist, and ableist culture? Do we go right and dig in our heels and stress that what we are doing is the “right way” while everything outside of our way is wrong?

Obviously, I do not have the answer to which direction our faith will go. What I do know is that sustainable change is time consuming, difficult, messy, and uncomfortable, but ultimately worth it. I continue to pray for our congregation to have the courage to take on these changes. I am honored that this congregation is entrusting me to lead the way of change.

Namaste, Blessed Be, Ashe’,
Vanessa Sampson Birchell