Larger questions of Mission:One common framework for a mission statement is that it says who we are, what we do, and who we do it for.
Who are we? There a number of issues under this heading but the one I want to most directly address is the question of religious identity. We are clearly not of the mind of what most folks in this society will think of as Christian but we are also keen to follow Jesus. To what degree do we fight to reclaim what it means to be “Christian” and to what degree do we put our energies elsewhere?
What is it that we do? We have gathered routinely for shared contemplative practice but there are not a lot of folks who are so confident in their own practice that they get much out of joining us. Maybe we are more about teaching those practices. But we are not just about how we each do contemplation; we are also about how we form relationships with each other. To what degree are we also teaching relationships skills?
We clearly want to speak to Pilgrims and we are reaching out to the other communities in Union Communion, and maybe we want to minister to UCC folks in other congregations and maybe folks in other main-stream Protestant denominations but what about those who are not active in a church or even those who have never been a part of a faith community or even those who identify with another faith tradition? Who are we reaching out to? Are there limits?
We will name the issues and begin to explore them but I doubt we will fully get to resolution on any of them. But we need to have a somewhat more solid footing to begin to do programming in this new vein.