“Like hope, trust, and love, gratitude is both a feeling and a spiritual practice . . . Words of thanks signal acknowledgement of another’s part in benefiting our lives. “Thank you” adds a human connection. It says, “I noticed you were there, and I am glad.””
– From “Practice Gratitude” by Christine C. Robinson and Alicia Hawkins, UU World, Fall 2009
I notice all of you and I am so very very glad you are here. And I am offering a bouquet of gratitude that is so huge it may just overwhelm me. How am I grateful? Let me count the ways:
- Grateful for your continuing support for the Tahoma Unitarian Universalist Congregation: our building, our staff, our members and friends.
- Grateful for each of you responding as you are able to our recent request for financial support. This is not an apology for asking – a very wise person noted that it is an essential job of the Board of Trustees to ensure the financial integrity of our organization – but I think it was hard for each member of the Board to write out that ask. Why? Because we did not want to contribute any additional stress during this most unusual time. And you know what we learned? That this community is so incredibly generous. Thanks to the generosity of our congregation in response to our recent communications, we are happy to report that donations are back on track with our budget for the fiscal year! We give thanks for all the contributions from those that are continuing their regular monthly contributions, and we give thanks to those who have gone above and beyond to support the congregation, especially knowing that some in our congregation are not able to give what they typically would contribute. So, thank you, one and all!
- Grateful for not only your financial support but your kindness as we – the BOT and the staff – try to navigate the unexpected (and very long) class 4 rapids, the turbulence created by COVID. Honestly, we are not as efficient or productive with our “normal” tasks as we would like to be. It feels like we are working much harder and accomplishing less. We are trying to focus on supporting the community inside our “walls:” Sunday worship, a variety of opportunities to connect online, religious exploration for kids, families and adults, keeping you informed about what we are doing in BOT meetings (agenda and minutes online). And we are exploring some additional ways to support the community outside our walls (more about that in the coming months).
- Grateful that you are taking time on Sundays to tame the technology and join us on Zoom, or Facebook live. Or to access the service later in the week from the TUUC website. Grateful to those who are helping others do this also.
- Grateful that you are enjoying Tea Time with Rev. Linda, deep discussions with Doug Taylor, the series Race Matters facilitated by the Social Justice Committee, Parent Drop-ins with our Director of Religious Exploration Nancy Slocum via Zoom, unique offerings from Infinite CUUPS, our covenanted Pagan group…and more! Take a look at the packed calendar on the TUUC website!
- Grateful when you let us know how we can support you. Ideas for programs? Know of someone who needs a phone call? Need a phone call yourself? Just send an email to Board@TahomaUU.com. We’ll get in touch.
- Grateful when you offer honest feedback. We appreciate hearing how you think we might be able to do a better job. Often your thoughts are our thoughts too.
- Grateful for your patience. We know this isn’t easy. We know some of you feel out of touch. Isolation is tough. We are learning more about that every day. Let us know what might help and be patient while we figure out if it is possible to make it happen.
- Grateful for the deep and rich flavor that Ministerial Intern Erien Babcock has stirred into our community. Your generous financial stewardship made that possible.
- Grateful for our hard working minister, Rev. Linda Hart; DRE Nancy Slocum; administrator, Libby Ball; BOT members; and volunteers who facilitate Sunday services.
I look forward to Sundays: what I hear and experience makes a difference in how I live my week.
And all of this starts with you. With your financial support. With your passion for a spiritual experience that lifts up the values with which you anchor your life. With your desire for a community, a neighborhood, a city, a state, a county, a world that reflects those values. Thank you from the depths of my heart and soul for digging deep in response to our October request for additional financial support.
Author Cynthia Ozick wrote: “We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude.” We do not take you and your gifts for granted. We are enormously grateful. We would not be here without you.
With warmest regards and deep respect – and sincere gratitude,
Cindy Hackett, President, Board of Trustees