CategoryContemporary Politics

The Ground of Being

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as preached at the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Houston, November 6, 2022 We are in the midst of one of liberal democracy’s great civic rituals: the country’s biennial elections. Their stakes seem to be much higher than usual. In the past weeks, I have talked with more than few of you who have reported losing sleep about their possible outcomes. Pundits, politicians, scholars, and a...

Act Upon Hope

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as preached at the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Houston, November 13, 2022 This past summer, I had the opportunity to hear the Commoners Choir in concert. The show was part of their Hope & Anger tour. They are a British folk choir that sings all original compositions. Our choir sang one of their pieces, “Hope,” earlier in the service as today’s special music. It was the song’s North...

Being a Descendant, Becoming an Ancestor

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as preached at the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Houston, October 23, 2022 Listen more often to things than to beings,‘tis the Ancestor’s breathwhen the fire’s voice is heard,‘tis the Ancestor’s breathin the voice of the waters. The words come from the Senegalese poet Birago Diop. The music is from Ysaye Barnwell. She is the renowned singer and former member of the well-known a cappella...

A Side Trip to Saltaire (or the Commoners Choir)

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The British punk collective Chumbawamba has long been one of my favorite musical groups. While they’re best known for a pop hit they had in the 1990s they actually have an extraordinary range that spans from hard core punk to various kinds of house and techno pop to traditional folk music. I never got a chance to see them live. They broke up about a decade ago so that their members could pursue...

Manchester

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I am in Manchester for a little less than two weeks. The city was historically the heart of British Unitarianism–and I am told that even now about half of the Unitarians in the United Kingdom live within 50 miles of the city center–and the University of Manchester has one of the largest collections of Unitarian books and archival materials in the world. They actually have two separate...

May Day: A Tribute to the Workers Holiday

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as preached at the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Houston, May 1, 2022 I want to begin by thanking everyone who contributed to last night’s fundraiser. It was a wonderful celebration of First Houston and our musical program. Thanks to Dr. Rocke and Chelsea, the choir, the string band, Paige Powell, Jim McGehee, Karoline Mueller, Traveler, the Clear Creek Girls, Rev. Scott, Alma, Tawanna...

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