Richard Rohr on Human Maturity

Sunday I got to offer the sermon at United Church of Christ in Holladay, Utah. It is a kind of home to me. Because of a few key friends who I trust for their honesty. Their particular kind of spirituality is so well accompanied by a spirit of social justice. And home further, because I’ve been able to sit by myself quietly in their chapel, reflecting, in times when I really needed it.

My focus for the sermon on Sunday was “rehumaning,” a phrase that I’m using quite a bit lately. As I said with the UCC people, I’m not even sure what that means, but it has something to do with reclaiming who we are and how we are together in a way that is more authentic and more honest. It infers a kind of showing up together in the real time quality of our stories and wonder together. In the name of healthy and well community. Something like that.

In that spirit, I told stories. One of my daughter. One of my oldest son. One of a good colleague. All pointed to a level of deep presenting together.

I also offered two passages from Franciscan Friar Richard Rohr for the sermon, both from the book, Hope Against Darkness. One as Silent Meditation. The other as Centering Reading. Both point to a quality of human maturing, particularly in our ability to sit in tension and unknowables.

  • “You could say that the greater opposites you can hold together, the greater soul you usually have. By temperament, most of us prefer one side to the other. Holding to one side or another frees us from the tension and anxiety. Only a few dare to hod the irresolvable tension in the middle.”
  • “I’m seeing people of great faith today, people of the Big Truth, who love the church, but are no longer on bended knee before an idol. They don’t need to worship the institution; neither do they need to throw it out and react against it. This is a great advance in human maturity. Only a few years ago it was always either/or thinking: ‘If it isn’t perfect I’m leaving it.’ We are slowly discovering what many of us are calling ‘the Third Way,’ neither flight nor fight, but the way of compassionate knowing.”

Grateful to the UCC community and to the needed journey of evolved being together in the unknowables. Grateful to Richard Rohr for a lifetime of presenced living.


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