Provocateur’s Blog

The past couple of weeks, I’ve been working with the First Unitarian Church here in Rochester to set up a blog for their brand new Provocateur-in-Residence position at the church. The idea behind the position is to bring in someone from outside the (fairly narrow) UU base and expose the congregation to new ideas and alternatives. He’ll be giving periodic sermons, writing articles for the newsletter, and posting to the Provocateur blog.

At this point in my life, it’s much easier for me to donate time and skill than to donate $$ to the church, and volunteering makes good practice with both design/dev and client relations (no money on either side lowers the stakes) – so I got in touch with the minister here and he put me to work right away. Reverend Scott has been very easy to work with, I’m glad to say, and the setup moved right along. Not that setting up WordPress should be a huge ordeal, but some clients can make the simplest things a headache. It’s always a pleasure to work with a happy, easy-going client.

So First Unitarian’s first Provocateur is a Catholic journalist retired from the local newspaper, Mark Hare. He gave his first sermon Sunday before last, and it was interesting and thought-provoking. And, he clearly knew his audience and played to it with plenty of humor: there were cynical political comments with a liberal bias, some jabs at modern euphemisms UUs can appreciate, and a joke about recycling (or lack thereof). You can read the full sermon on the new blog.

Be sure to check out that header picture… long-time readers might recognize it.

I know there are a few UU readers for my blog, and although Mark may be focusing a certain amount on the Rochester community, I think he will have plenty to say that will be relevant to Unitarians in general. I highly recommend subscribing to the news feed so you get updates for new articles, and definitely get engaged in the conversation over there by leaving comments!

2 Responses to “Provocateur’s Blog”

  1. Matt
    | Reply

    Nice job on the blog, and I think it’s very cool that they want to be exposed to alternatives. I like his statement in his first post that no faith has a monopoly on truth. :)

    • ellen
      | Reply

      Thanks. Yeah I think it’s a good idea to have someone from another community talk to us and maybe help us become more welcoming and accepting. I think that statement you point out there is one that’s pretty core to the UU beliefs, so it’s nice to hear that he agrees with it despite being from another faith – sometimes it’s hard to know what individuals from another religion believe. This will hopefully expose the congregation to see beyond the sometimes monolithic façade of some other groups and lead to better understanding.

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