Favorite Thanksgiving Poem

“A Harvest of People” is my favorite Thanksgiving poem which can also be used for a table grace.   The Rev. Max Coots last served as Minister Emeritus of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Canton, New York.

I am thankful for all the different people who enrich and nourish my life!

 A Harvest of People, Max Coots

Let us give thanks for a bounty of people:

For generous friends, with smiles as bright as their blossoms.

For feisty friends as tart as apples;

For continuous friends who, like scallions and cucumbers, keep reminding us that we’ve had them.

For crotchety friends, as sour as rhubarb and as indestructible;

For handsome friends, who are as gorgeous as eggplants and as elegant as a row of corn; and the others as plain as potatoes and as good for you.

For friends as unpretentious as cabbages, as subtle as summer squash, as persistent as parsley, as endless as zucchini, and who, like parsnips, can be counted on to see you through the winter.

For old friends, nodding like sunflowers in the evening-time.

For young friends, who wind around like tendrils and hold us.

We give thanks for friends now gone, like gardens past that have been harvested, but who fed us in their times that we might live.

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Prayer for Wholeness

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O, Love,

We are in your presence

As close as our beating hearts and the cycle of breath that nourishes us.

May we feel held in this sacred space—

Letting go of the responsibilities that tug at us,

Laying down the worries that jangle our nerves.

For now—there is nothing to do or any more to achieve—

We pray for wholeness.

Let us take a moment to bring to mind any loved ones, neighbors, colleagues, or friends who are going through hard times.

We offer healing prayers to all who are in pain whether in body, mind or spirit.

May Love break through barriers of isolation and loneliness

That peace may be found.

Our prayers reach around the globe.

May this be a time of turning away from Business-As-Usual

to form new partnerships and create positive change.

In the week ahead,

May we find energy and vision for facing life’s challenges

And may our actions bring more love and understanding into our broken world.

Advent Prayer

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During this time,
We pause from our usual activities, our preoccupations, our busyness,
to reflect on the meaning of our lives.
We step back from our work, our chores, our distractions,
to rest for a moment, to be held in sacred space and time,
to open our minds and our hearts to deeper insights about life.
As alone and independent as we may sometimes feel,
We are part of an Interdependent Web of all Existence.
Our lives are sustained by many gifts beyond ourselves,
just as our lives touch others in ways both known and unknown to us.
We pray for Healing for our loved ones, strangers, and ourselves
that all may move toward greater Wholeness.
We pray for the Energy to do the hard things we know we are called to do.
We pray in this Advent season, to wait with an expectant heart
for more Light and Love to break through.
May we remember the true spirit of the season comes not
through sales or busyness
but through quiet moments when Mystery and Beauty enter our hearts.
May we invite a greater degree of Joy into our days
Not through over-eating or over-drinking or over-spending
But through Gatherings where we take time to truly share with one another.
And let us be Grateful, every moment of our lives,
For all the Blessings that sustain us,
and for the opportunity to be a Blessing to one another.

~Rev. Amy Freedman

“To Know and To Be Known” First Church Boston

Many Paths, One Love

The following is my sermon “To Know and to Be Known” delivered at First Church in Boston on September 15th, 2013. 

Listen to sermon on the First Church Boston website.

To Know and To Be Known

Rev. Amy Freedman
First Church in Boston
September 15, 2013

I am honored to stand before you today.  I am particularly grateful to Joyce and the Standing Committee for hiring me as your Consulting Minister.  For a long time, I’ve held the aspiration to be part of a ministry team.  So, I am delighted to be working with your talented Senior Minister, the Rev. Stephen Kendrick.  As you can imagine, although this is my first Sunday preaching here, this is not my first day on the job.  I have been attending some meetings.  It has been a pleasure getting to know your staff.  I am impressed by the skills of Catherine Bradfield and Zach Dunn as well as their team who I am still meeting. Plus, what a gift to get to know not one but two Ministerial Interns this year– Schuyler and David.  Together our ideas and energies are amplified—we are off to a good start.

Like the pilgrim in this morning’s story, my arrival here follows a long journey.  I carry with me the same longings for Peace, Love, and Joy.  Although unlike the pilgrim, my spirit is not weary.  Perhaps it is because I stopped at some of those storehouses along the way.

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New First Church Boston website!

First Church in Boston has a brand new website, just in time for Gathering Sunday.  What a great way to start off a new ministry and new church year!

Take a look at the full site at www.firstchurchboston.org.

First Church Boston website preview

Listen to First Church Boston services live every Sunday at 11am Eastern Time.

Tune in to 88.9 FM WERS in Boston
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