To say I’m overwhelmed would be an understatement…in fact, I am almost at a loss for words. But not quite (you didn’t really think that would happen, did you?!).
The special Sunday morning celebrating the tenth anniversary of my service to WES was truly remarkable. From the flowers to the music to the cupcakes, every detail was planned out with thoughtfulness to convey the message: we are glad we found each other, and we are proud of what we have accomplished together.
And I sure am proud. I’m proud to serve a community that knows it’s okay to cry when filled with emotion, and that understand how important it is to celebrate milestones. My friend and colleague the Rev. Megan Foley, who works for the Unitarian Universalist Association, came and shared remarks–and I’m proud of how she sees WES, proud that she looks at our justice work and our energy and sees a congregation that not only learns from the world around us but has something to teach, too.
I am also deeply grateful. For the beautiful morning on Sunday–and to the incredible team that put it together, including Rachel Alexander, Craig Thornton, Susan Runner, S
helby French, Christine Parcelli, and Cayo Gamber. Those last two folks not only took care of an extraordinary number of details, but also baked ALL the amazing cupcakes, a feat which I can only begin to imagine but was very happy to benefit from! I’m grateful to the WES speakers, John and Julie Campbell and Trang Duong, whose words moved me to tears at BOTH platforms…good thing I brought a hanky. I am grateful to the staff, who supported this day and support the work of WES all the time. And I am grateful to every single one of you, children and adults, who have participated or will participate in some way in this celebration and the party to come next Sunday! What we have accomplished together as a community over these past ten years truly is because of all of you.
Pictured with this blog is the absolutely incredible podium you all gifted to WES (and through WES, to me–though I promise not to cart it back to my house and start using it for family meetings). It was built by Sean Schieber–you can see more of his work here: https://www.seanschieberfinefurnishings.com/
. My gift to you is also included, two prints that speak to me of the core of WES’ mission in the world, and created from murals by my friend Cristina Sosa Noriega–you can see her work here: http://www.cristinapaints.com/
. On the picture, I included these words: Presented to the Washington Ethical Society by Amanda Poppei, Senior Leader, in gratitude for ten years serving a congregation that works for love and justice to cross all borders of the heart.
I don’t think I’ve ever written truer words. Thank you so much for allowing me the honor of serving you.