Have you ever been transformed? Not changed or grown, but transformed? Can you recall a time when you re-made yourself into something new? Change and growth is necessary to all of us; we have all changed and grown over time. But transformation is something deeper; it requires a re-making or a re-birth. A caterpillar is transformed into a butterfly. De-segregation transformed our society. The death of a loved one can transform a family. Transformation requires adjusting to radical new ways. The caterpillar no longer crawls on the ground, but flies. De-segregation significantly increased justice in the world. A family no longer takes life for granted, but lives with deep intentionality.
Transformation was a regular occurrence in seminary. We served as the subjects of transformation, the witnesses to the transformation of others, sometimes even the catalyst for each other’s transformation. Students entered as their usual selves; though feeling a call to something deeper. Their ideas about God, the Bible, their world, the ministry, their faith – all were completely broken down and then re-made into something new. The process of transformation looked different for each one of us; but we all were re-made, re-born into something new. We emerged as clergy – ministers, pastors, rabbis. Doctors go through a similar process, as do many others. Whether the process is seminary or a medical residency or war or service in the peace corps; it is more than learning, more than an education. Transformation requires adjusting to radical new ways.
For the month of April, we will be trialing a thematic UU program called Soul Matters. Transformation is the theme for April and it will run through Sunday services, religious education, social media and community gatherings. I invite you to enter into this month with intentionality and practices of deep reflection and to share your experiences with others.
In what way or ways have you been transformed? Or hope to be transformed? Or… is a new transformation waiting for you just around the corner?
In faith and with love,