Faith Formation by Janen Wright

Faith Formation Focus: Hope

The hope that is alive in me this holiday season is that we, together as a  congregation, can become a stronger multicultural community.- and I’m not just saying that to get brownie points as a Director of Faith Formation!  This is a hope renewed in me from the privilege I had of attending two intense … Continued

Faith Formation Focus: Abundance

Not what we have but what we enjoy, constitutes abundance.  Epicurus Since Epicurus was an ancient Greek philosopher who live 341 BC, we can see that the above wisdom has been around for a very long time and that the beauty of its truth doesn’t diminish. These words open the floodgates of true wealth for … Continued

Faith Formation Focus: The Courage to Be Vulnerable

October’s theme is courage.  In the past year or so I have thought about courage in a different way, that has been helpful to me, so I thought I’d try to share that here.  A while back Rev. Kelly mentioned in one of her sermons the research of Brene’ Brown about how wholehearted people have … Continued

Faith Formation Focus: Spiritual Practices

At our All Church Camp this year I got to offer a workshop with Kelly on spiritual practices.  This is the definition of spirituality from Parker Palmer and William Murray that Rev. Kelly shared. “Spirituality is the human yearning to connect to something larger than ourselves”.  I find that being part of something bigger than … Continued

Faith Formation Focus: On Words

I didn’t make it to General Assembly this year so I went on the UUA website to meet our new (and first woman) UUA President, Rev. Susan Frederick-Gray.  I was very impressed with some things she said and what I learned about her. I then listened to parts of some Ware Lectures (the keynote speakers … Continued

Highlights from The Gift of Imperfect Parenting

  One of the highlights of this past spring was getting to lead a parenting class  on  material that has hugely influenced the way I parent from Brene’ Brown.  The course was audio so we took notes while we listened and paused the CD for lively discussion.  I learned a lot from the different experience … Continued

Faith Formation Focus: “A Zest for Life”

  I have always greatly admired people who have an unquenchable zest for life.  They are the much-needed spice in what can be the bland humdrum of the day in and day out.  Who pops into your mind when you think of someone who embodies this trait (apart from Rev. Kelly)? Mine would be a … Continued

Faith Formation Focus: A Tribute to Women for Mother’s Day

Mother’s day is just around the corner, a day when we honor all of the women who have blessed our lives.  This is good, but I can’t help but think that the world owes more to mothers, more to women, than thank you.  Women have had more to offer throughout history than we’ve been allowed … Continued

Faith Formation Focus: Transformation

As Unitarian Universalist we are in the business of transformation.  When I first joined the church I was impressed that the mission of the UUA is to transform people who will transform the world.     The word “transformation” carries the prefix “trans” which means “beyond,” so to transform is literally to go beyond our … Continued

Faith Formation Focus: “On Risk”

  I can’t speak of risk without being in awe of so many people who risk personal safety for justice and the greater good. When my family watched the movie Selma about the civil rights movement and Martin Luther King Jr. I remember the comment that my daughter made as the credits rolled.  She said, … Continued

Faith Formation Focus: “What’s in a Name?”

One of the first and most important ways that we connect to another person or thing is through learning their name. Each of us is identified by our personal names and by the names we call ourselves like, in my case, mother, sister, wife, friend, director and Unitarian Universalist.  Some people would even say that … Continued

Faith Formation Focus: Prophecy

We start out the New Year with a theme word that is not so obvious to our faith.  The word is prophecy and we will undoubtedly all understand it better after delving into it more this month in our services and mindful meetings.  In the meantime I did some searching on my own –first in … Continued

Faith Formation Focus “Welcome Christmas”

I was recently struck by the words of Charles Dickens, the Unitarian who brought back Christmas when it was going out of style by writing A Christmas Carol.  In it he says “Christmas is a good time, a kind, forgiving, charitable, pleasant time, the only time I know of in the long calendar year when … Continued

Faith Formation Focus: The Importance of Story

I have always been fascinated with how the brain latches on to stories more than anything else to make sense of the world.  Anthony de Mello put it well when he said, “you have to understand that the shortest distance between a human being and the truth is a story.”  Before science or psychology or … Continued

Faith Formation Focus: The Healing Power of Grief

October’s theme is healing.  What a beautiful concept and something that is needed in all of our lives. I have been a reluctant student of grief lately, and though I realize that I am barely skimming the surface of the full depths of human suffering, I am ready to be done with this course (find … Continued

“The Importance of Having a Growth Mindset”

Every now and then, you hear or read something that makes a piece of life’s great puzzle fall into place. Mindset- the New Psychology of Success was such a book for me. In it Carol Dweck talks about an experiment she did with kindergarteners where she brought in a series of actual puzzles for each … Continued

“The Wonder of Trees”

I got to help plant trees this week, along with a dozen kids, as I assisted Amy with her Sing the World Green camp. As I dug holes and packed soil in around plants I recalled the first poem I ever memorized. It is by Joyce Kilmer. It starts with I think that I shall … Continued

“Come Summer”

“Come Summer” Diane Loomans If I had my child to raise all over again, I’d finger paint more, and point the finger less. I’d do less correcting, and more connecting. I’d take my eyes off my watch, and watch with my eyes. I would care to know less, and know to care more. I’d take … Continued


These words by one of my favorite authors, Rachel Remen, hang on the wall by my desk at home. “Blessing life may be more about learning how to celebrate life than learning how to fix life. It may be developing and eye for joy. Blessing life is about filling yourself up so that your blessings overflow onto others.” … Continued