Our Rummage Sale
The Sunday Service for this week was an invitation to enter into Phyllis Tickle's theory of the "500 Year Rummage Sale." CLICK HERE to view that service.
As summarized on the website Vialogue:
Tickle's basic thesis is that every 500 years, the Church goes through a rummage sale, and cleans out the old forms of spirituality and replaces it with new ones. This does not mean that previous forms become obsolete or invalid. It simply means they lose pride of place as the dominant form of Christianity. Constantine in the late 4th century, early 5th, the Great Schism of the 11th century, the Reformation in the 16th century, and now the Postmodern era in the 21st century have all been points of reference for these changes.
Our own Unitarian and Universalist heritage can be traced through all of these changes up to its current form of Unitarian Universalism. Today, in the midst of a pandemic, we find ourselves in a new shift, a new rummage sale. If the outcome is similar to the rummage sales of our past then we can expect more vitality, more flexibility, and a growth of our faith!
We should not anticipate it will be an easy shift. None of us chose this to happen today. It doesn't feel good to anyone. Yet, if we are open and aware despite our personal discomfort, together we may be able to craft a church that not only meets the spiritual needs of people today, but expands and embraces many, many more for the next 500 years.
"The Church Has Left the Building" (excerpt)
by the Rev. Margaret Weis
The church is the gathering together of all the people, and experiences,
and fear, and love, and hope in our resilient hearts;
gathering, however we can, to say to the world:
welcome, come in, lay down your heartache, and pick up hope and love.
For the church is us—each and every one of us—together,
a beacon of hope to this world
that so sorely needs it.