Minister’s Musings – Grief and Commitment (6/29/22)

Dear Friends,

The news that the Supreme Court has struck down Roe v. Wade hit on Friday, and I do mean “hit.”  And with it came the news that abortion is now illegal in Wisconsin.  I know that many of us are feeling strong emotions in response to this, and I want you to know that you are all in my heart, and you have been since I heard about the decision.  I also want you to know that, whatever you’re feeling, you’re not alone – please call or text me any time if you would like to talk about the decision or process your feelings about it – whatever they are.

Personally, I’m sad, angry, and deeply offended.  This decision removes the basic freedom of anyone with a uterus to make decisions on one of the most personal aspects of their life – caring for their own physical and mental health.  I agree with the statements that have been made by our national UU leaders over the past week:

UUA President Rev. Susan Frederick Gray, at 6/24 protest in Portland: “Abortion is healthcare. We will not be silent. We will break the law. We will win.

June 24 written statement by the Rev. Susan Frederick Gray: UUs Remain Committed to Reproductive Justice

The Side With Love Team: A time to grieve, a time to re-commit

As they both say, first, we grieve and rage.  It’s important to our response that we each take the time to feel what we’re feeling.  You’ll hear me share some of my feelings on Sunday morning, and you’ll hear words and music from other Reebers then too.  And I invite you to talk with me after the service or call me before or after Sunday if you want or need to talk.  Know that I will hold your feelings with you whether I share them or not – I’m committed to my responsibility to provide pastoral care regardless of whether we agree.

And next, we organize.  We start with sharing our plate this week and next with the Wisconsin Women’s Medical Fund.  Next, in response to the realization that none of our Madison congregations have existing reproductive justice ministry teams, the Revs. Kelly Crocker, Kelly Asprooth-Jackson, Matt Aspin, and I have committed to building a team that will organize all three UU congregations for effective action, including collaborating with other faith and secular communities.  Please contact me if you’re interested in being part of this team.  An important part of responding to this is to UU the Vote for the 2022 midterm elections; our Justice Leadership Team has begun organizing around this.  And beyond that, I ask – how do you want to build power?

In faith and love,

Karen (6/29/22)