Reach and Transform

Posted by T. Resnikoff // February 9th 2014 // 30 Days of Love // no comments

Day 23: Do More than Stand on the Side of Love Love Reaches Out.  That’s the theme for our General Assembly this year in Providence, Rhode Island.  As a staff member who spends much of his time supporting the Youth Caucus Staff at each GA, I’m looking forward to what we will experience and learn from one another during our time together in June.  I know that the Youth Caucus Deans have thought a lot about how to create an experience for youth attendees that will inspire and equip them to reach out in love in their home communities, long after GA has ended.  From workshops leadership and anti-racism that provide us with skills to…

Interfaith Strong

Posted by T. Resnikoff // February 8th 2014 // 30 Days of Love // no comments

DAY 22: Stand with Those Who Face Religious Discrimination Not long ago I read an article written by a young Muslim-American man who described the types of bias and discrimination that Muslim-American individuals experience on a regular basis. I figured as much – I saw how violence against  people who looked Middle Eastern rose during the Iran hostage crisis in the 1970s, and then again after 9/11. What surprised and touched me the most in his story was when he reported discovering that his family members had had similar experiences but never shared their stories with one another, choosing instead to suffer in silence and keep it to themselves. No one should have to suffer,…

How Do We Love Concretely?

Posted by Annie Gonzalez Milliken // February 7th 2014 // 30 Days of Love // no comments

DAY 21: Radically Reintegrate the Formerly Incarcerated When I sat down to think about what it meant to reach out with radical love to formerly incarcerated people, I realized I didn’t have many personal experiences to draw on. But I did immediately think of a friend of mine, Aviva Tevah, who works to bring transformative education to individuals and communities affected by mass incarceration in New York City. She agreed to write a guest post for me, and these are her reflections on what it means to reach out with radical love to those who have been incarcerated. – Annie.   by Aviva Tevah As scholars like Michelle Alexander remind us, mass incarceration is a…

Embrace Everyone

Posted by Jeremie Bateman // February 6th 2014 // 30 Days of Love // no comments

DAY 20: Radical Inclusion Today, 30 Days of Love invites us to consider the ways we engage all people, regardless of physical, cognitive, sensory, or psychological ability. I’ve found myself thinking about this quite a bit recently, as one of the courses I’m taking opens each class with an icebreaker of some sort. Our first day involved a number of icebreakers that required movement around a rather cramped classroom and one of my classmates has a motorized wheelchair. We “made do” but it was clearly not an inclusive environment.  In subsequent classes, our icebreakers have been more verbal or take place sitting down in smaller groups with little moving around the room, now that the…

Challenge Your Bias

Posted by Annie Gonzalez Milliken // February 5th 2014 // 30 Days of Love // 2 comments

DAY 19: Practice Radical Love for our Troops   Seek the stories you don’t usually hear I can count on one hand the number of people I know who are veterans of the recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. I can count them on one hand and still have three fingers left over. One is the cousin of my childhood best friend and the other is a guy I met at church through young adult gatherings. This means I don’t hear the stories of military members or veterans very often. Sometimes I would hear a report on the radio, read a news article, about veterans returning with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), veterans who can’t…

An Immigrant’s Contemporary Experience

Posted by T. Resnikoff // February 4th 2014 // Social Justice, Stories and Voices // 2 comments

The story this post tells was submitted as part of Day 18 of the Thirty Days of Love. It is so powerful and disturbing it stands on its own.–Ed. By Leila Pine, Volunteer Sandra Lopez, age 22, a lifelong Tucson resident who was brought to the U.S. as a three-week-old infant by her immigrant parents, is a graduate of Amphitheater High School in Tucson, where she was an honors student. She is one of the two million undocumented immigrants who were deported under the Obama Administration over the last five years, despite the fact that she would have been eligible for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status, a program that allows people who…

Bridge the Divide

Posted by T. Resnikoff // February 4th 2014 // 30 Days of Love // one comment

DAY 18: For Immigration Reform At the Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministries at the UUA we think often about bridging divides, and in particular the multi-generational divide between Unitarian Universalist youth and young adults and other UUs, so it has become a reflex for us to consider how one’s identity informs one’s point of view. While in the office we work to build bridges of understanding amongst our constituents, it is not obvious it translates into being more aware of the divides we are all called upon to bridge in our daily life. Leaving the comfort zone of one’s own point-of-view isn’t automatic, isn’t always easy and requires a deliberate choice. Bridging a…

Radical Love in Action

Posted by Carey McDonald // February 3rd 2014 // 30 Days of Love // no comments

DAY 17: Put Love into Practice Doin’ Good – A Labor of Love Yesterday I hung out with the Youth Group at First Parish in Milton to talk about what it means to do good in the world. This great group of teens is raising money for an organization jn the Boston area called Bridge Over Troubled Waters, which provides life-changing services for homeless and at-risk youth, including queer youth. Their fundraiser is coming up next weekend, so they were preparing by looking at the complicated questions that come from wanting to donate to those in need.   We started by discussing how you decide to give money to people who ask on the street….

Push Beyond

Posted by Deborah Neisel-Sanders // February 2nd 2014 // 30 Days of Love // one comment

DAY 16: Practicing Radical Love Open Heart In our denomination we talk a lot about love.  Lately, we’ve been using the term “radical love.”  Sounds like it’s right up our UU alley, but what does it actually mean? Today’s 30 Days of Love post describes it as encouraging each other, and ourselves, to stand on the side of love in ways that aren’t easy. When we practice radical love, we push past our comfort zone and strive to practice a love that truly encompasses all. To be perfectly honest, I don’t really think of myself as someone who seeks out challenges – I’m pretty self-indulgent, and if there’s an easy path I like to take…

Oral History to Vibrant Reality

Posted by T. Resnikoff // February 1st 2014 // 30 Days of Love // no comments

DAY 15: Keeping the Story Alive Flat World Story My family arrived in America from Eastern Europe during anti-Jewish Pogroms at the end of the 19th century. My grand-parents on both sides of the family were born here, but their parents, and any family members older than they, were immigrants. Growing up I was fascinated to know where our family came from, but when I asked my grand-parents to talk about it the story always began and ended with the passage of their parents through Ellis Island. No matter how much I’d insist, my grand-parents were equally insistent on not telling me the family history from before about 1900 (give or take a few years,…