Intergenerational service focuses on love

To the Editor:

My name is Gail Stratton, and I am with the 65-member Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Oxford, Mississippi.

This last Sunday, February 14, we had an intergenerational worship service that focused on love and the idea of reimagining valentines. Our message was about loving ourselves, loving our community, and loving the wider world. The younger children helped with the chalice lighting and taught it to the rest of the congregation.

Each person, large and small, got a valentine sticker when they came in the door. After one song and the chalice lighting, we asked everyone to find someone else with the same sticker, introduce themselves, and share something that they loved. This mixed the ages, and was a lively exchange. When we came back together,  we sang “Make New Friends.”

We shared what Universalism is, and read several short poems about the love of God from the poet Hafiz. We talked about the idea of Standing on the Side of Love. We said there will be times we will be challenged to understand situations, but while we are figuring it out, we choose to stand on the side of love. We talked about specific examples, like immigration reform and also the support UUCO had shown for my partner and me when we had gotten married last year.

We then as a group made valentines and posters for members who are ill or have moved. We also did face painting and decorated cookies. We concluded the day by taking pictures. The images are here. I think everyone left feeling “fed” and connected!

A new InterConnections article on intergenerational worship will be online at uua.org/interconnections March 1.