Small Group: Unity & Diversity

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First UU Church of Nashville Covenant Group Session Plan #139
Meghann Robern, Intern Minister and CG Facilitator

October Worship Theme: Unity & Diversity

Opening Words: UUA Lifting Our Voices worship supplement, #41 (Penny Hackett-Evans)

Each of us brings a separate truth here.

We bring the truth of our own life, our own story.

We don’t come as empty vessels but as full people,
each with our own story and our own truth.

We seek to add to our truths and add to our stories.
This room is rich with truth, rich with experience.

All manner of people are here:

We all bring our truth with us.

May we all recognize the truth and the story in other lives than our own.
May we hear and honor the truths that we all bring as we gather together.

Together we have truths.

Together we have a story.

Together we are a community.

Chalice Lighting and Covenant

Check-In and Sharing


The Reverend Mark Morrison-Reed offered up four things for UUs to consider regarding “The Perversity of Diversity”:

  1. Lighten up. Many UUs are fearful of making mistakes, of saying the wrong thing and offending someone. Our fear prevents us from forming authentic relationships. We cannot let trepidation prevent us from reaching out. We will inevitably make mistakes, but we can forgive one another’s blunders.
  2. Know who we are. We can only attract those who are like us. By knowing who we are, and being authentic to who we are, we will be able to attract more people who are like us across ethnic and racial lines.
  3. Appreciate the diversity that’s already within us. The more we can do this, the more we would attract others to join us. Let’s affirm and celebrate with joy the diversity we already have.
  4. Understand how we are caught in a conundrum—we have a perversity to our call for diversity. We want to change, but not too much, and we want to stay in our comfort zone. We settle for looking different rather than being different. Change will come whether we want it or not, simply because the society around us is changing.

How do these ideas make you feel? Have you ever stopped yourself from doing something out of fear of offending someone? Can that stopping, that not reaching out, ever be a good thing? Why are some areas of diversity so much harder to achieve than others?

Bridging from the Sept 27 worship service, how do you reconcile your multiple identities into one whole person? How can that work you do with yourself be applied to congregational life? To life in a larger community like Nashville?

Closing Check-Out and Chalice Extinguishing

Closing Words: UUA Lifting Our Voices worship supplement, #23 (Jonipher Kwong)

Spirit of Life,

You speak to us from the East and the West
You speak to us from the North and the South
You call to us from the depths of our being
We respond with enthusiasm and fervor
We cry out from Manila to Maui
We shout from Alaska to Alabama
We proclaim your wondrous love from the highest mountain to the deepest ocean
Our voices must be heard. We shall not be silent.
Our voices must be heard.


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