We’ve been participating in a UUA-related program, Soul Matters, that supports small group ministry, religious exploration for children and youth, and worship. The Soul Matters theme for March is Commitment.

What does commitment mean to you as an individual after a year of pandemic? What does it mean to us as a congregation?

The word (commit) means, ‘putting it in, together:’ you can count on me, and I can count on you; we’re holding each other, strengthening each other in a common endeavor.

Friends commit to personal priorities and practices that change day by day, week by week, year by year.

Olmsted UU’s most recent covenant (2003 – 18 years old!) uses ‘commitment’ in three ways:


Guided by our common commitment to religious freedom, spiritual growth, environmental responsibility, and social justice,


we commit our combined actions and personal resources:


we commit:

  • To live by our mission
  • To treat each other according to the values in our UU principles

Are these words still accurate for Olmsted UU as a congregation?

Covenants and Mission Statements can be so many fancy words.

Words matter. And die on the wall, in the filing cabinet, in cloud storage.

What is alive now? Moving to live by our values (as individuals and as a congregation), revealing what matters to us now? What realities/needs motivate the commitments we make to each other to be of benefit to our world?

I’m moved by the need to protect democracy, to dismantle systems of oppression (e.g., white supremacy, misogyny, homophobia) to (re)build trust in our society, to find common ground and to defend the common good (protecting the air, water, life on earth).

I’m concerned by the hate speech and brutality of the alt-right and normative bullying on social media, which puts people on the defensive, and closes down our ability to connect, to trust.

I commit to the practice of kindness, admitting when I’m wrong or don’t know.  

I commit to be: aware of what I think and how I feel, specific about what I need and what I can do in service to the congregation.

I commit to watching for and naming where inspiration is arising (in the congregation, committee, group or individual); where it’s getting stuck, where it’s died.

I’m curious about what’s moving you, and what you’re ready to commit to as we prepare for spring, for new life?


I commit to working with you, if you’d like support in your needs and yearnings, and to inviting you in to my projects, ideas, and wonderings. 

May we support one another in exploring and honoring our commitments, for our mutual well-being and for the well-being of Olmsted UU.

Rev. Mary