At First Universalist, we recently re-examined our church's mission statement (it had been over a decade since we last looked at it.) The previous Mission Statement was,
"We join together at First Universalist Church in a welcoming, spiritual community that affirms our liberal religious heritage. Our ministry is to bring the Universalist message of love and hope to one another, to our children, and to the work of social justice."
And after a detailed, very intentional process, lead by our Board of Trustees, we emerged with:
Universalism undergirds this new mission statement: Love and hope call us to faithfully give the gifts, talents, voice, passion, resources, compassion, and energy we have to serve one another and the world. Love and hope call us to give our attention, to listen, and to walk with others. And love and hope call us to let go, to trust, to receive the blessings that come unbidden, to receive without expectation of returning the gift. And love and hope call us to grow, to deepen, to integrate, to walk ever more faithfully as we align our values with our actions....it's a spiral that goes deeper and deeper.
"Give, receive, grow." I think it's deceptively simple and I've barely given it justice here. We're just beginning to live into it. But I love how that screen of "give, receive, grow" can be applied to everything we're doing....children's ministry, small groups, justice work, worship. If we're not giving, or receiving, or growing (in that spirit of love and hope), then we're off mission.
We'll be unpacking this new mission statement in more detail and what it's calling us to in a sermon series starting in September.
But for now, these thoughts: What's your mission statement (personal or institutional)? How easy is it to be remember? Can you Tweet it?!