Tuesday evening this week Unitarian Universalist President Peter Morales also spoke to the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association (UUMA) about the need to cross borders. The UUMA is working on a new educational program and leadership training in intercultural competencies with the amazing Beth Zemsky & One Ummah Consulting. There are programs and signs that the Unitarian Universalist Association in seeking to equip local communities in crossing outside their known and comfy borders and be with and of the larger world community, making a way for merciful justice and for love to flourish. That’s good news, and strengthening the capacity of individuals and congregations to cross borders when many of those individuals only rarely have to do so is going to be the challenge. Fortunately, there is a growing number of folks within the faith who are experienced border crossers in various ways; these are the needed mentors and teachers, spotters and trainers, and inspirers by daily action that every religious community needs to practice healthy, loving, justice-making border crossing.
Border Crossers know we have to cultivate comfort with living outside of our comfort zones, humility and gratitude for graciousness when we meet it, and to live with low expectations of being appreciated, experienced as fully present, or given much grace when we cross those borders. We need to stay connected to the sources of inspiration and resilience and connect with other border crossers. We also have to be aware of the rakete and coyotes who know very well where the borders are and are looking to exploit folks in vulnerability and fear.
Fearfulness is one of the greatest imprisonment tools because it deprives people of freedom in our own minds, hearts, and spirits. Nurturing a resilient, border-crossing supportive faith means attending to something stronger than fear: the power of love that bears us on into joy in choosing goodness.
May we all cherish those practices of love and find time for them throughout our days.