A Covenant of Promises and Dreams:
A Community Inquiry in Preparation for the Installation of Our Settled Minister
On November 6, 2021, the Olympia Unitarian Universalist Congregation will gather together with members and supporters of our larger community to celebrate the Installation of our Settled Minister, Reverend Mary Gear. This Installation ceremony, to be held both virtually and in person at United Churches of Olympia, will confirm, in the presence of all who are gathered, our covenanted relationship with Reverend Mary.
Like a series of nested boxes, these words invoke a concatenation of mysteries folded one into another. Covenanted relationship, Settled Minister. These are words we have certainly heard before, but do we know them by heart? These old and enduring forms are our inheritance. Now we are called to bring them to life anew, to find meaning for ourselves within them. How will we make them sing?
All of us who hear this call are invited to ponder and inquire together. We have been told that ours is a covenantal faith. How does that covenant live, become the habits of heart that bind us together? How do we create such a covenant with our Settled Minister, Reverend Mary?
Members who are drawn to these questions are invited to a time of self-reflection, to ask themselves:
- What is asked of me, as an individual congregant in relationship to our settled minister, Reverend Mary?
- What inner commitments can I make to serve this relationship?
- What commitments can we as a community make to serve this relationship?
Then let us engage in conversation. In the fall we ask Learning Circles and Covenant Circles, committees and task groups, neighborhoods and friends, where ever OUUs gather, to create space to share the fruits of self-reflection on these questions.
After Worship on October 17, we will come together to listen in community, to sound our reflections and commitments.
“I want to beg you, as much as I can…to be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves like locked rooms and like books that are written in a very foreign tongue Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.”
– Rainer Maria Rilke at age 27 in Letters to a Young Poet