Director of Religious Education! I just came back from my first meeting with her since the birth of her baby and her return from maternity leave. I got to hold the baby Carl, replace his pacifier in that "little bird" mouth (he wanted something else, but pacifier was all I could give him!), say hello to Big Brother Leon, and enjoy the atmosphere of a baby-filled home.
She just came back to work last Sunday and we needed to get our May 23 service underway, as it will be a combination of Flower Communion, Bridging, Child Dedication, Teacher Recognition, Youth Music, and Story time in an intergenerational context. So we have a lot to do in a short time. But she's so efficient, even with babies to tend, that she will be able to manage her share without too much trouble, I think.
We're going to dramatize the story "Miss Rumphius" and I get to be Miss R! I've been Old Turtle in the past and also another less memorable character. Who would have thought that being a minister gave me a chance to be a character actress as well! My big stage opportunity, I guess, if you don't count sermonizing.
I've always enjoyed working with our DREs and find a lot of satisfaction in helping that person develop a religious education program that fits the needs of the congregation. We are able to talk over the needs of individual families and the class make-up, because we are fairly small and we both know the families fairly well.
If our program can develop, in our children, a strong sense of UU identity, I will be happy. If they understand to the core how important it is to treat others with dignity and respect, if they want to be helpful to others rather than hurtful, if they are able to see themselves as worthy and capable, if we can instill these understandings in them and give their parents the support they need, I will be happy.
I am so pleased that my own son grew up in UUism, even though he has had his moments of rebellion and scorn for those who don't walk their talk, because he is, at his core, a Unitarian Universalist. And he is doing what he can to live the ideals of our faith in his current congregation. As we approach Mother's Day, I feel gifted by the knowledge that he is a good man and that he is related to me!