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Hey, fundies--guess what I just bought!


Hane

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I went to my (UU) church's annual goods and services auction this evening. Folks raffled off things like pet sitting, baked goods, household repair work, yoga lessons--you name it.

 

I left with the most awesome one of all: The minister is going to present a sermon on the topic of my choice!

 

You may rest assured that the topic will NOT be any of the following: patriarchy, "traditional" marriage, infralapsarianism vs. supralapsarianism, credobaptism vs. paedobaptism, militant fecundity, or multigenerational faithfulness.

 

Any suggestions? I'd love to hear from all of you!

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Hmm. Any topic at all? Maybe the purpose of evil in the world--not just where does it come from, but is there really any point in fighting against it, how do we recognize it, what can happen (big-picture) if we don't oppose it?

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I went to my (UU) church's annual goods and services auction this evening. Folks raffled off things like pet sitting, baked goods, household repair work, yoga lessons--you name it.

I left with the most awesome one of all: The minister is going to present a sermon on the topic of my choice!

You may rest assured that the topic will NOT be any of the following: patriarchy, "traditional" marriage, infralapsarianism vs. supralapsarianism, credobaptism vs. paedobaptism, militant fecundity, or multigenerational faithfulness.

Any suggestions? I'd love to hear from all of you!

Do you remember the book Pollyanna? In it, the pastor of the church decided to give sermons on the glad passages of the Bible. (I know there is a lot of love and happiness in Psalms). I would just once like to hear a sermon on love they neighbor, turn the other cheek, quit being so judgmental and realize that every one of God's children is worthy of love and life.

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This is so cool. I'm UU, too and I love this idea. You have so many topics you can give your pastor. I really Lizziesmom's idea about focusing on the positive passages found in the Bible. Fundies focus so much on the doom and gloom.

One idea I just thought of is what would various religious figures think about our world today if they came back? Jesus, Buddha, etc.

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What Jesus would say to the fundamentalists of today.

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What Jesus would say to the fundamentalists of today.

I love this!!! What would Jesus say to the likes of people who brag of their so-called Christian credentials-Franklin Graham, Joel Osteen, Pat Robertson, Joyce Meyer, etc?

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Three ideas.

1) Emotional auditing is a huge problem in my family, in my department, etc., so I would love a sermon that really sat with the Psalmist's uncomfortable emotions and didn't try to gloss over them. I think there are people for whom just having public permission to be pissed at God, because God can take it, would be very powerful.

2) Us vs. them framing is so seductive and so damaging. How can we use the stories of the bible and our forebears in the faith to expand the definition of "us," so that it is more possible to work alongside people we don't always like, our largest interests (i.e., continued life on this planet) being congruent with each other? (I was at a secular solstice event last night, and this was probably the central question of the event.)

3) What would happen if we took the social gospel and the prophets as literally as some people take the bible's miracle stories? I offer up part of Isaiah 58 here, because it is roughly my favorite biblical passage ever, and I would love a sermon on what would happen if we took it as literally as some folks take the miracle stories:

Look, you fast only to quarrel and to fight, and to strike with a wicked fist. Such fasting as you do today will not make your voice heard on high.

Is such the fast that I choose, a day to humble oneself? Is it to bow down the head like a bulrush, and to lie in sackcloth and ashes? Will you call this a fast, a day acceptable to the Lord?

Is not this the fast I choose: to loose the bonds of injustice, to undo the thongs of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke?

Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked to cover them, and not to hide yourself from your own kin?

Then your light shall break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up quickly; your vindicator shall go before you, the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard.

Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; you shall cry for help, and God will say, Here I am.

If you remove the yoke from among you, the pointing of the finger, the speaking of evil,

if you offer your food to the hungry and satisfy the needs of the afflicted, then your light shall rise in the darkness and your gloom be like the noonday.

The Lord will guide you continually and satisfy your needs in parched place and make your bones strong, and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters will never fail.

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Another UU here! I'm hijacking that idea for our fellowship's auction next year... that is amazing!

So as a UU, I would like to hear about what the UU equivalent of the Christian "Great Commission" looks like. (That's the deal where Jesus commands the disciples to go out and be fishers of men, or rather to spread the word and increase the fold) Since UUs aren't evangelical necessarily, what's the best way for us to get the word out about what and who we are as a faith? Drawing from our sources, what can we find in the religious and philosophical traditions to support our actions? We do a lot of social justice work, but how can we reach out to people without "soul winning" type activities?

I am really interested to hear what you choose!

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Maybe, that the true greatest commandment is "be excellent to one and other".

It's been too long since I've seen Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure. I used to watch frequently with my girls.

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I'd also be curious to hear about good versus evil, and why God allows bad things to happen if good is supposed to be greater than evil. I'm Catholic and the standard line I get is "God gave us free will and some people choose to do bad things." Always had some issues with that, especially with the Sandy Hook tragedy last year. Yes, the shooter had free will, but what about those poor babies and teachers? The fates were locked the second he walked into the school. So where was their free will?

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I offer up part of Isaiah 58 here, because it is roughly my favorite biblical passage ever, and I would love a sermon on what would happen if we took it as literally as some folks take the miracle stories:

Look, you fast only to quarrel and to fight, and to strike with a wicked fist. Such fasting as you do today will not make your voice heard on high.

Is such the fast that I choose, a day to humble oneself? Is it to bow down the head like a bulrush, and to lie in sackcloth and ashes? Will you call this a fast, a day acceptable to the Lord?

Is not this the fast I choose: to loose the bonds of injustice, to undo the thongs of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke?

Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked to cover them, and not to hide yourself from your own kin?

Then your light shall break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up quickly; your vindicator shall go before you, the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard.

Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; you shall cry for help, and God will say, Here I am.

If you remove the yoke from among you, the pointing of the finger, the speaking of evil,

if you offer your food to the hungry and satisfy the needs of the afflicted, then your light shall rise in the darkness and your gloom be like the noonday.

The Lord will guide you continually and satisfy your needs in parched place and make your bones strong, and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters will never fail.

A sermon based on this passage would be incredible. I would love to hear it.

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I'd also be curious to hear about good versus evil, and why God allows bad things to happen if good is supposed to be greater than evil. I'm Catholic and the standard line I get is "God gave us free will and some people choose to do bad things." Always had some issues with that, especially with the Sandy Hook tragedy last year. Yes, the shooter had free will, but what about those poor babies and teachers? The fates were locked the second he walked into the school. So where was their free will?

This has always been my biggest issue with religion. No-one has succesfully explained to me why bad things happen to people. I can pinpoint the moment I stopped believing. It was the moment my newborn son was diagnosed with a painful genetic disease. Any omipotent being who could allow that to happen isn't worth believing in IMHO.

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What Jesus would say to the fundamentalists of today.

He would call them the false prophets

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The moment I began to stop believing was when my questions were met with "You must have faith" instead of answers. I totally lost my faith when my mother suffered through 6 weeks in the hospital and ended up in a nursing home for several months with brain damage. "God's will" and "She's in a better place now, honey" were no comfort. I too, question how a supreme being can vault from loving to vindictive in a matter of seconds. (Turn the other cheek; an eye for an eye).

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I totally lost my faith when my mother suffered through 6 weeks in the hospital and ended up in a nursing home for several months with brain damage. "God's will" and "She's in a better place now, honey" were no comfort.

I have never been a believer, and I always find these sorts of comments very upsetting. "Your grandpa is in a better place" was, to 10 year old me, a big flashing reminder that no, he wasn't. Its interesting (though not really surprising) to me that you would have similar concerns as a then-believer.

Thinking about OPs sermon, maybe some kind of discussion about "what's comforting to you might not be to others?" would be useful? I think sometimes people forget that, especially when they're confronted with something upsetting or when they themselves are upset. Its much more compassionate to stop and think about what the other person would want to hear. Though that's kind of a tangent from the discussion of good or evil....

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I would love to hear, based on the world's religions/agnostics/atheistic beliefs, how to cope with stress, grief and pain. So much focus is placed on the "why" of suffering. Suffering will happen. What do various traditions teach on how to cope with it? I know I would learn a thing or two.

I hope you let us know what your minister speaks of and some helpful notes!

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I would love to hear, based on the world's religions/agnostics/atheistic beliefs, how to cope with stress, grief and pain. So much focus is placed on the "why" of suffering. Suffering will happen. What do various traditions teach on how to cope with it? I know I would learn a thing or two.

I hope you let us know what your minister speaks of and some helpful notes!

I love this. We had an interim assistant minister for a couple of years who was also a social worker, and she gave several excellent sermons on this topic exactly. She talked about things like meditation, service to others (getting outside of your own problems), taking Emerson's challenge to write your own "Bible" by collecting quotes that you personally find comforting and inspiring and having that at hand when hard times come, and reading the lives of others who have overcome adversity. There was a lot more, but those really stuck for me. This would make a great sermon; I would love to hear this a couple times a year just for reinforcement.

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