Flower Communion

Every shape and colour 🌻🌸

Today was the Flower Communion for my Unitarian Universalist congregation. Each person brings a flower or two to place in a communal vase and before dispersing after service, each selects a different flower without judgement, accepting it for it’s unique beauty and welcoming it into their home. We affirm through this act of communion that we “accept one another, with all our differences, and that we … celebrate one another’s uniqueness.” It’s a beautiful wrap of our liturgical year and a confirmation of community before the summer winds blow us this way and that.

I have just finished the run of a challenging but artistically rewarding play. Two evenings ago, after the curtain call, a friend presented me with the gift of a beautiful red rose. Full of the praise and satisfaction of the play’s run, I decided to bring this rose as my offering to the communal vase. What could better represent who I am right now, than the rose given to me to celebrate my performance?

Knowing I have a tendency to get distracted and show up late to things, I left and arrived early. However, being me, I forgot the rose. I could PROBABLY have made it home to get it – but I would run the risk of getting distracted and being late. So I wandered the grass behind the church parking lot… and noticed pretty wildflowers growing roadside just down a bit of a grassy slope.

I proceeded down the slope and realized pretty quick I’d have to take my heeled sandals off. Slipping barefoot on pine needles, I scraped my knee making my descent. I picked five types of wildflowers of different colours, trimming the stems with my nails and removing the lower leaves. I got a mosquito bite climbing back up the hill, and looking at the clutch of feral petals I wondered if it was actually worth it. There’s always loads of extra flowers.

I put my shoes back on, straightened my skirt, pulled a bug from my hair, and checked to make sure my knee wasn’t bleeding. Seems to me, those wild chaos flowers were the most representative offering I could have possibly made.

Tiny Herod

Grand River Unitarian Universalist Congregation Sanctuary, Christmas Eve

    This is where I work but tonight I was not working. I got to sing carols, light candles, and listen to stories. Look how whimsical and warm this space was. I needed some of that.
    The thought we left with was how each character in the story of the birth of Jesus lives in the world today, and a small version of each lives within us. Tiny, jealous Herods writhing within us, desperate to control everything to retain power. Angels, singing joy and praising the good. Magi, our inner wisdom skating the line between science and magic to discover truth. How does your Tax Collector show up? What is your Innkeeper like? Can you sense the simple gifts your inner Shepherd offers?
    The sermon didn’t get psychodynamic but that doesn’t mean I can’t. Maybe Christmas is as good a time as any to remember the Child within you and somehow feel again the miracle of their birth. Know that inside you is a Mother and a Father that is yours to be in relationship with. You can tell the story of that relationship the way you want, in your own words, and by whatever new rules you choose. 
    I think I better stop there before I start looking for my inner Donkey and Cow.
Merry Christmas to everyone who believes that, rejoice the return of the light if you’re on the hemisphere experiencing that, and Happy New Year to all who mark time in this way.         Conjure your blessings as you best fathom, and welcome to them.