#371 | Rick Holmgren | Changes to Generosity

Submission 371
Rick Holmgren
UU Church of Meadville (Meadville, PA) 7313

What is your suggestion or idea?

In Section C-2.2. Values and Covenant: Amend the description of Generosity.

This suggestion builds on suggestion #73, Amend the description of Generosity. This suggestion builds on suggestion #73, which suggests changing ““Generosity”” to ““Gratitude,”” which I think is a good change.
Gratitude Generosity. We cultivate a spirit of gratitude hope, abundance and generosity.We covenant to freely and compassionately share our faith, presence, and resources and to humbly welcome the faith, presence, and wisdom shared by others. [Our generosity connects us to one another in relationships of interdependence and mutuality.]

What is the reason for your amendment idea?

When we recognize and are grateful for the abundance with which we are blessed, generosity is a natural consequence, so reordering this to make the value “Gratitude” and generosity the result makes sense.

The covenantal statement as proposed by the Commission suggests only that we share our wisdom and could be read to imply that we have nothing to learn from others. The suggested language acknowledges our limited understanding, honors the gifts brought by others, and commits us to welcoming the assistance of others in our growth.

If the suggested addition to the covenantal statement is accepted, it makes sense to delete the last sentence in the service of brevity, since mutuality and interdependence is suggested by the proposed new wording.

Have you discussed this idea with your congregation or other UUs?

We have had two meetings after Church to discuss the proposed Article II revisions. Each was attended by about 20 people, a significant portion of our regular attendees. There was support for deleting the last sentence and recognizing our interdependence by honoring the gifts of others. I had not seen the suggestion to change generosity to gratitude, but I suspect that idea would be welcomed as well. The importance of cultivating gratitude has come up many times in our services together, most recently last Sunday.