Early Fall at The Sanctuary

Looking for something that struck you in a recent gathering? Or couldn’t make it?
Here’s a quick glimpse at our last two worships…

On September 19th, we explored “Holy Transition.” 

candles october 2013

We gathered with:


Then later, our fab music team* led us in “Swimming to the Other Side” by Pat Humphries and “Home” by Phillip Phillips. *Joanna Lubkin, Rachel Kelly, and Matt Meyer joined Mark David Buckles in music leadership for this worship.


We lit our chalice with a interactive blessing, led by Joanna Lubkin, inspired by the Netilat Lulav blessing traditionally done on the Jewish holiday of Sukkot.

Words for Reflection came from Einstein’s Dreams by Alan Lightman, imagining a world in which a human lifespan was just one day. We think change is hard, but these imaginary folks could barely face the shift in light. They’d sooner try to beat the clocks advance, or live in denial of new realities, than open to the changes of the day, or take time to form lasting friendships. (Some cool quotes from this book here.)


Dave reflected on his recent and bumpy transition to a new apartment. While spending the (ten) high holy days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur with Central Reform Temple (as a guest cantor) marking the transition to the Jewish new year, he couldn’t help but note how he was trying to rush through his own transitioning, instead of taking time to actually be “in between,” and to return to a deeper grounding. He realized that he was actually trying to find his grounding in his new physical space, rather than open up to his new community.

The image of the sukkah invoked by Joanna, the often rickety temporary shelter erected over the holiday of Sukkot within which a Jewish community comes together to celebrate, eat, and pray, also served as a powerful reminder that home is not where books come out of boxes and get placed on a bookshelf and furniture all has its place… it is, indeed, where we come together and honor what matters most — each other.

.::. .::. .::.


On October 2, we explored the practice of giving.

We gathered with:october2013 music

  • “All Are Welcome” by Dave Scherer, a.k.a. Agape

  • “Meditation on Breathing,” Words and music by Sarah Dan Jones
    (audio from Jo, Mark, and Dave leading at the Boston Marathon Interfaith Vigil)

  • “Freedom” by Tyronne Wells

  • “Love Will Guide Us” by Sally Rogers; Music arranged by Mark David Buckles

Mark David Buckles led us in his new, Irish-flavored arrangement of the hymn “Make Channels for the Streams of Love,” (Words from Richard Chenevix Trench,  Music: American Folk Melody). We rocked out to “Bilgewater” by brown bird (check out those lyrics again!), and closed our service with “Let The Life I Lead,” adapted from The Consolers. Musical all-stars included Michaela Romano-Meade, Sylvia Guerra, Joanna Lubkin, Rachel Kelly, Matt Meyer and Dave Ruffin.

The Words for Reflection were from Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet, the chapter called “On Giving.”

Joanna Lubkin’s reflection about a daily practice of giving referenced Cami Walker’s book 29 Gifts, and her own experience trying out the challenge of giving a gift every day, for 29 days straight. Jo found that, for the most part, even when she felt she had the least to give, this discipline in her life gave her energy she didn’t know she had. She also wrestled with the reality that when it came to money, she was stuck in a scarcity mentality. But Jo found meaning in aligning her expenses more closely with what (and who) she actually cared most about. Jo’s reflection on giving reflection prompted community member, Sara Krakauer to share this via facebook:  “Today, I introduced the idea of 29 Gifts to my 5th and 6th grade class. We decided to try it as a class, and I made a little form where we can all log our gifts. We named the doc “Just Because” as recommended by one of the kids. A few hours later, there are already a few student entries: 1) I gave my dad a hug, 2) I helped my friend with her homework, 3) Today, I gave my (younger) brother the 2013 Ohio quarter. He seemed to really like it, although its such a small thing.”


Anyone else taking on the 29 Gift challenge?


Don’t forget our Anniversary Worships coming up! The first of which is this upcoming Wednesday, October 16th, at First Church in Boston, at 6 pm. Check out the facebook event page if you haven’t yet!