Friday, July 29, 2005

Circuit Riders Needed

This is from a piece from Unitarian Universalist, Nancy Procter - Flickering in the Dark -

Two hundred years ago Universalist circuit riders road into the wilderness to deliver a message of Good News: The Universal Love of God. Imagine the loneliness in the frontier; miles from neighbors with fleeting moments of social exchange. And the uncertainty of life-threatening weather, the possibility of violence from an unknown stranger, and a sudden illness that runs through a family with nothing to ease the pain and no promise of a cure. The nights are dark, lit only by the flickering of candles and firelight. So lock the door and wrap the handmade comforter around loved ones.

Today on the frontier of the 21st century, we live a different kind of loneliness. We are far from family, living in communities where we don't know our neighbor's name; our comings and goings meriting a polite wave. Having conquered the physical darkness, we are now surrounded by flickering of the internet, television, and radio. The flickering forecasts dangerous weather which we are powerless to change and tells of illnesses that are killing millions of people. And now the flickering is red or orange, telling us the possibility of violence from strangers. We lock our doors and wrap ourselves up in the comfort of things. We hide our broken souls while hoping for something more. Of what value was the 'Good News' of the Universalist circuit riders? Was it a saving message? Did it renew hopes and dreams of the future? Out of the loneliness did it offer community and connection? Was it amessage of healing? This is our history and legacy of Evangelicsm. We need our 21st century circuit riders. Unitarian Universalism has amessage that heals souls and renews hopes and dreams? Do we need to spread this Evangel - good news, glad tidings, the gospel? Yes! Then it is time we renewed our Evangelism for the 21st century.

Nancy ProctorUU Annapolis 560

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