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Bless the Imperfect

Bless the Imperfect

Meditations for Congregational Leaders

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From some of the most prominent voices in Unitarian Universalism today come these 50 poems, prayers, and prose reflections to support and celebrate congregational leaders.

Editor: Kathleen Montgomery

Price: $12.00

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From some of the most prominent voices in Unitarian Universalism today come these 50 poems, prayers, and prose reflections to support and celebrate congregational leaders. These meditations—alternately serious and funny, tender and frank—portray an understanding of congregational leadership as an avenue for spiritual growth rather than an administrative chore. They inspire and affirm the work of all kinds of leaders—professional and volunteer, lay and ordained. Suitable for both private reflection and public worship, this collection holds up the role of leader as vital to healthy congregational life and honors those who serve in this capacity.

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Preface

Long-Haul People by Rudy Nemser

Just Regular Folks by Jane Rzepka

Song for the Unsung by Steve J. Crump

Hansel and Gretel by Lynn Ungar

Dragon Lady at the Chalice by Vanessa Rush Southern

How to Be a UU Leader by Denny Davidoff

A Sweet Mystery by Sarah Lammert

Charge to the Parish Minister by Laurel Hallman

Messy and Imperfect Beloved Community by Laila Ibrahim

Start Right Here by Gary E. Smith

Losers by John Corrado

Something Left Over by John Buehrens

The Church That Doesn't Matter by Kelly Weisman Asprooth-Jackson

Theology of Inclusion by Janice Marie Johnson

The Power of Truth by Mark Belletini

A Prayer for Leaders by William F. Schulz

The Paradox of Organized Religion by Dan Hotchkiss

Let the Wrong Ones In by Susan Ritchie

What Is Your Ministry? by Bruce T. Marshall

Ask Someone Else by Peter Morales

Prayer for the Stubborn by Vanessa Rush Southern

The Unseen Spiritual Discipline of Administration by Sue Phillips

What We Love, We Empower by Patrick T. O'Neill

The Exceptional Moment of Our Unique Faith by Doug Zelinski

Nothing Is Static by Manish Mishra-Marzetti

Stepping Back, Moving Forward by Robert McKetchnie

Three Poisons in Leadership by Wayne Arnason

Leadership by Ned Wight

Wait by Bruce T. Marshall

Reading for the Standing Committee by Phyllis B. O'Connell

Everything in Nothing by Sue Phillips

Keep Your Dreams Alive by Hope Johnson

The Rabbis by Dan Hotchkiss

A Prayer for This Gathering by Laila Ibrahim

Spiritual Practice in Leadership by Kathleen Rolenz

Meant to Serve by Denny Davidoff

What About That Courage? by Anne Principe

Deliver Us to Evil by Annette S. Marquis

As If God Were There by Terry Sweetser

Tolerance for Repetition by William G. Sinkford

The Mosaic Makers by Alicia Forde

How Will You Use Your Gifts? by Don Southworth

Theology of Accompaniment by Janice Marie Johnson

Transformational Leadership by Meg Riley

Facing Fear, Trusting Love by Manish Mishra-Marzetti

Get in the Game (Show)! by Vanessa Rush Southern

We Covenant by Janice Marie Johnson

We Are the People Who Choose by Jane Rzepka

Letter to the People of the Future by John Cummins

A Blessing for Those Who Minister by Elea Kemler

A Blessing for Those Who Minister

Elea Kemler


Blessed are those who minister.

Blessed are those who welcome the quirky, the lost, and the unwanted, the ones whose sweetness usually goes unseen.

Blessed are those who treat the fearful with gentleness and can see the face of the child in the one who is unkind.

Blessed are those who do not use sarcasm as a weapon when their feelings are hurt and who tell hard truths with the intent to heal and not to wound.

Blessed are those who hold in their keeping whole books of stories that can never be told, stories of betrayal and shame and sorrow, stories of how life shatters into pieces like glass.

Blessed are those who offer comfort and hope in the face of the wreckage, who show up as soon as the news goes out, who meet the police on the doorstep, who hold out their hands.

Blessed are those who sit with the upwelling of grief and the aching emptiness, who do not flinch back from pain, especially when it is raw and angry and new.

Blessed are those who dare to find words to speak of such fleet, shimmering things as hope and grace and who know to speak of faith quietly and mostly in poems.

Blessed are those who hold such stillness in their spirits that it radiates outward for others to rest in.

Blessed are those who minister.

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