the OUUC spark

May 18, 2023

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Love is Medicine for Public Health - Rev. Mary Gear

This past weekend I listened to the interview that Krista Tippett recently did with the Surgeon General of the U.S., Dr. Vivek Murthy. I am in awe of the clarity of his calling to be a healer and inspired to share his message with you. Thank you to Lynne MacDonald for recommending this amazing interview.

Dr. Murthy is a deeply religious man who asks spiritual questions like: What values guide us as a nation? What is our moral responsibility to each other? What is true strength and how does it manifest? That he is the “top doctor” in our nation gives me hope for our culture and social fabric.

In this interview, Dr. Murthy speaks of four factors that make this a time of great challenge. The first is the extraordinary pace of change; many things are changing much faster than we can keep up with or understand. The second is the negative environment that we are steeped in each day, the voices of media and the larger culture. The third is that we have lost the ability to dialogue with each other, especially across differences. And the last factor is loneliness and isolation. Dr. Murthy identifies loneliness as a public health issue because humans are made for connection, and we can’t thrive without it.

What was interesting to me is that Dr. Murthy says none of these factors were new when the pandemic hit, and all of them were laid bare and made worse by it. Perhaps the pandemic helped us see the challenge more clearly now. So, we are called now to rebuild our social infrastructure for healthy relationships.

Dr. Murthy offered four ways to increase our sense of connection and decrease loneliness:

  1. Spend 15 minutes each day connecting with someone you care about. This can be a call, a text, a card or letter. He recommends it be someone not in your household so you can be reminded of the breadth of your circle of connections.
  2. When you are with someone, give them your full attention. Devices are designed for distraction; don’t let them intrude on your connection.
  3. Find opportunities to serve others. This helps us move outside ourselves.
  4. Make sure to find moments of solitude for quiet reflection. This helps us notice gratitude.

In the end, Dr. Murthy prescribes love for ourselves and others as a remedy to the public health emergency we face. When love is at the root of our day-to-day actions, we bring love into the world that badly needs it. May we each make this so.

Blessings on your week.

With love,

Rev. Mary


“To Be a Healer” with Dr. Vivek Murthy, U.S. Surgeon General

On Being podcast, April 13, 2023

Meditations with U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy

The Tiny Little News Show

Tiny Little News May 15,2023

THIS SUNDAY! Annual Congregational Meeting

Sunday, May 21, 2023 – 11:30 am in-person in OUUC Sanctuary and on Zoom

Agenda (more information available here)

- Approval of May 22, 2022 Congregational Meeting Minutes

- A report from the Board of Trustees and the Minister

- Adoption of the July 2023-June 2024 Budget (congregational vote required)

- Election of Board Members – Rich Kalman, Susan Moon, Karmel Shields (congregational vote required)

-Election of Leadership Development Committee Members – Gail Gosney Wrede, Anne Kohlbry (congregational vote required)

- Proposed Bylaws changes:

  1. Allow the annual meeting to be no later than June 30.
  2. Allow a proxy to sign the membership book for remote members.
- Informational updates

Food will be served after the service and before the meeting by the Stewardship Team and other volunteers. Dessert will be served after the meeting as we celebrate the years of service by Sara, Anissa, and Marie.

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Download the flyer below if you would like a list of OUUC events for May. Great for posting on your refrigerator! Looking for more upcoming events? Go to the OUUC Calendar.