As a newcomer to Loudoun myself, this is the implicit sense of what I needed to hear, and also to feel, when I came through the doors of this church. That WAS exactly the message my spouse and I received from each and every person who have greeted us over the past several months.
Nina and I really do feel welcome, and we want to “pass it on” to everyone we meet.
Our spiritual journey to this congregation, perhaps like yours, has been a bit complicated.
Initially, in our “mixed marriage” from Catholic and Protestant families, we came to Unitarian Universalism looking for a religious community that would help us raise our preschool children with healthy respect for diverse family lifestyles and for ALL the religions of the world as well as grounding in the practical ethics of Jesus (and the Buddha!) that we had learned from our own upbringing and education. We were not disappointed!
But we were pleasantly surprised that we also received support for ourselves! The daily routines of parenting those children on top of our demanding careers had taken so much of our energy and time that we had neglected our own spiritual lives for years. Perhaps that has been true for you, too?
We found an open and accepting community of folks very much like us in their sense of the important values and priorities for a healthy modern life, not just recitation of ancient creeds and blind acceptance of improbable myths and dogmatic pronouncements by remote patriarchal church authority.
When we felt this resonance, we knew we had found our family’s religious home. And over a few years, our commitment to the UU faith tradition grew even deeper, to the point that we made our transitions from church volunteers with “day jobs” in law and teaching to accept a call to professional UU ministry.
The twenty-five years since we made that decision have been full of challenging and inspiring experiences in the five different states which we have called “home” at various times. But now, with our shared enduring commitment to our newest grandchildren, we find that we are really Virginians!
As the chosen Developmental Minister for this UU Church of Loudoun, I believe it is my responsibility to collaborate with lay leaders, musicians, and religious educators in the design and presentation of inspiring, nurturing, informative, and challenging worship services and programs for adults and families which will promote health, wholeness, and spiritual growth for the assembled congregation as we participate together in meaningful outreach and social justice efforts for the larger community.
We also aim to extend a sincere welcome to others to enjoy the full range of benefits of being active participants in this particular community- to feel mutual support in times of trial, to share challenges, to overcome obstacles, to enjoy the good times and have fun, too!
We hope you will take advantage of the opportunities to connect with this community, fully grounded in historic traditions and also responsive to contemporary lifestyles, as we learn about YOU and YOUR needs and talents so that we can be mutually enriched. We are looking forward to getting acquainted!
Please feel free to contact me if you have questions about our congregation.
(The Reverend) Dan King, Developmental Minister