Sermon by Rev. Shawn Newton.
Well, you may be as surprised as I am that I will be preaching about baseball this week. But, that is, indeed, the plan! What initially began as a wild idea to honour our president (and huge Jays fan), Susan Phillips, has become a deepening reflection on baseball’s many rich metaphors for life. Our new worship leader, Niki Andre, will lead us in an “A Capella Jam”; Paul Bognar will offer a poignant testimony; and the choir will sing Stephen Paulus’ beautiful “The Road Home.” It promises to be a unique and joyous Sunday.
I mistakenly reported last week that the Toronto Marathon was being held this past Sunday. It, of course, was not. I confused the dates. It is, however, taking place this Sunday, so plan accordingly, as the marathon(s) will be using both Spadina and Yonge, making First U a bit of an island on Sunday morning. Streetcars and other vehicles will be allowed to cross at major streets during gaps in the marathon.
During last Sunday’s service, I spoke about the meaning of whiteness. You can find the text and audio for my sermon posted here. Many have asked for the link to the video I shared of DeReau Farrar, the music director at First Unitarian in Portland, Oregon. You can find it here. In my sermon I mentioned the recent call to action on racial justice by the Unitarian Universalist Ministers of Canada, of which Lynn and I are an active part. Our hope is that we will find meaningful ways in the coming year to build upon the work we’re already doing to respond to this call.
Finally, you hopefully received an email earlier this week inviting you to participate in a census of the congregation. Already, we’ve had a significant rate of response, but we hope for full participation. So, if you’ve not yet done so, please take some time in the coming week to complete the census, as it helps us to better understand who we are as a congregation. Having already seen some of the data coming in, I can say I’ve already learned some things about us that I did not know. We’re even more interesting and diverse than I imagined!
See you on Sunday.
In faith and love,
View the Order of Service.