Something Is Missing

You know how you get this feeling when there is something essential missing from your life? I’m having that feeling lately. Like although life could always be better in some way that their is an essential piece to the puzzle that I don’t have right now. Shockingly enough, I have a feeling that missing link is church.

I was baptized Lutheran as an infant and went occasionally to services and Sunday School. Strict, organized religion is not for me; no matter how many times I’ll go to hell for admitting such things. When I was married to my first husband we attended his families Church of Christ services. While that seemed to work for awhile I ended up feeling out of place and somewhat confused.

For a number of years now I’ve pretty much ignored going to church. I have let the kids attend Sunday School at my mom’s church on an infrequent basis, but that’s about as regular as it’s gotten. So…where does one start when one has nothing to go on? How does one get back into a “church life” when you don’t even know what you believe or where you belong.

I’ve definitely considered going back into the Lutheran church to ‘appease’ my mom, but it doesn’t feel right. I want to go to a church where I feel most comfortable. I’ve also considered a community church, something non-denominational, but for whatever reason that too just doesn’t seem right. So, my mother and father-in-law have started attending Unitarian Universalist services. I questioned her about them and they seem to enjoy it. We have one congregation here in town and the whole premise of UU appeals to me.

They have an open minded policy. Followers are welcome to share any thought, feeling, need with the church community and not feel disregarded or left out. They have special classes for the kids and they are a welcome part of the actual church service. All in all, it’s a place where technically speaking everyone should fit in. So, I’m going to give it a try. For those interested, the principles of the UU church are as follows:

1. The inherent worth and dignity of every person;
2. Justice, equity and compassion in human relations;
3. Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;
4. A free and responsible search for truth and meaning;
5. The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large;
6. The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all;
7. Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.

The next service is 10AM January 13th and I fully intend to be there, children in tow to see what it’s all about. After all, I can’t let an essential piece of myself go missing for too long.

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8 Comments »

  1. Robin Edgar said

    “Followers are welcome to share any thought, feeling, need with the church community and not feel disregarded or left out.”

    Don’t count on it. . .

    Something is missing between the preaching and the practicing in many U*U “churches”.

  2. Jessa said

    That may be so, but I still plan to give it a go. You can’t know for yourself unless you try. What experience do you have? I’d be interested to hear more.

  3. Robin Edgar said

    Hi Jessa,

    I am not suggesting that you should not “give it a go” but I am warning you not to get your expectations *too* high based on the propaganda of the U*U “faith” that many individual U*Us, whole U*U “churhes”, and even the UUA fail to live up to.

    I see that you found my Emerson Avenger blog that deals with the injustices, abuses and hypocrisy that I have encountered within the U*U community. I just got back from a morning spent in court as a result of U*Us trying to use municipal bylaws to over-ride my constitutionally guaranteed right to peaceful public protest. It should be a straightforward case but, because there are constitutional issues involeved I have to make a special application to fight the ticket on constitutional grounds and was only made aware of that by the prosecutor this morning. . .

  4. Leslie said

    Good Luck!

    We started back in September and really enjoy it. The older three love Sunday School and all the extra activities. I can’t imagine NOT going now.

  5. Jenny said

    I wish you the best and look forward to reading about how it went for you. We attend a non denominational after trying out all the other churches in town. They have an honest open door policy and we feel very welcome. I hope you find a loving church home soon!

  6. Jessa said

    I really appreciate all the comments. It’s wonderful to get such a diverse opinion base for something so important.

    I’ve actually decided that instead of attending the local UU church I’m going to try out the one my inlaws have found and like.

  7. B said

    That’s really great. I think church was missing from my life for the longest time…we attend a church a now as a family, and I think it put that missing link back. We go to a small(ish) Presbyterian Church, and I think they hold a lot of the same values you listed. I hope you find a church home and fill your void. Good luck!

  8. Jessa said

    My daughter’s preschool is actually held at a Presbyterian church. I’m not sure what the practices are within that sect of Christianity, so I hadn’t considered it yet as an option.

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