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COMPASS ROSE: THE UU SAN MATEO BLOG

The Path of CHANGE

Updated: Jan 17, 2023


Change is the only constant in life.

– Heraclitus


On the day I started contemplating The Path of CHANGE, our congregational theme for the month of November, Facebook’s time machine jogged my awareness with this sweet and love-filled photo:

The significant event captured here is UU San Mateo’s ordination of Member Pam Gehrke into the Unitarian Universalist ministry (held at the Congregational Church). Rev. Pam’s ordination took place only seven short years ago (on November 1, 2015), but most of the people in this photo (as well as former UUSM President Andrea Rosenfeld, who took the photo) have moved beyond our beloved community, in one way or another. So much change in just seven years!


But it’s not just the people in our congregation who have changed in the past seven years; it’s the life of our congregation itself. After both external and internal circumstances caused us to contract for a long time, UU San Mateo definitely is on the move again, changing with lightning speed (or so it seems to me).


We’ve finally “broken ground” on our long-awaited building renovation. New Board members and leaders are bringing fresh and exciting ideas to fruition. We’ve sufficiently mastered hybrid-service production so we can reliably bring our creative and inspiring worship experiences to congregants and visitors, both in-person and online. New staff members have joined the existing staff to re-energize everything, turning our redesigned Weekly Bulletin and website, the Choir’s return to in-person singing, and our post-service Connections Hour into celebratory experiences. Resolute volunteers are stepping forward with energy and commitment to fill critical gaps in worship planning, religious exploration, and ministerial search.


Yes, change is certainly in the air and on the ground here at UUSM, and the energy is palpable. I am so excited to see what comes next!


Perhaps you have noticed, as I have, that change is everywhere around us. It’s not just happening in our congregation, but also in our larger community, nation, and planet … and in our personal lives too, of course. So many changes have happened in the past seven years, both at UUSM and in our world; I wonder what changes will take place in the next seven?


One thing is clear: CHANGE is a constant in our lives. Over five hundred years before Jesus walked the earth, Greek philosopher Heraclitus proclaimed change to be “the only constant in life.” No one can determine in advance, of course, whether any single change will prove to be positive or negative, but each of us has control over how we react to change, and the ability to work to achieve positive change.


I do know one thing, though: I shall endeavor to meet change in our community with an open mind and heart, because we are “working together to transform ourselves and the world.”


I hope you’ll join me, as we travel The Path of CHANGE ... together.


“When you are finished changing, you are finished.”

– Benjamin Franklin


Seeking a deeper dive into The Path of CHANGE?

Check out the one-page CHANGE Overview, and the complete CHANGE Ministry packet.

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