Below are audio versions of select sermons and a homily:
I have learned how important language is to inclusivity, rejecting gendered language, ableist language, or other language that may hurt a marginalized population. I have learned how to make language an art, bending the rules of grammar to create poetic metaphor and prose. I have learned how to use language to inspire and call for change.
Successful worship is a web of collaborative work. When working as a team, multiple ideas and creative energies are experienced and digested by the congregation every week. This allows for wisdom from multiple shared, embodied truths to create one whole, with one message.
While Unitarian Universalists can and must draw from a wealth of different cultures, religions, and beliefs, it is equally important that we do this keeping in mind cultural misappropriation. Why am I using this song? What is the purpose of including this reading? What is the history behind this?
Services I help create are steeped in my theology. My theology of overcoming is heard when I speak to the hurting, the suffering, and those who are recovering. When appropriate, I include myself, my stories and my lessons. I work to keep sermons personal, while not divulging too much. I work to keep sermons vulnerable, in hopes that this openness inspires others to be vulnerable as well.
When a room full of adults needs to be challenged I bring that challenge to the pulpit. When the country is struggling and love seems barren, I remind people to sing. When I feel the need for deeper engagement, I incorporate ritual and make service multi-sensory, giving congregants something tangible to mark their achievements or honor their pain, even something as simple as a small stone. Worship is an art. It is an art that can better the world and heal souls.
“Jane thoughtfully created her worship to be right for the audience – culturally, generationally, and theologically. Whether she was speaking to a large audience of adults in the assembly hall, to children with adults listening in during the Time for All Ages, or to a small intergenerational group outdoors at Retreat to the Woods, she created an appropriate tone and level of interaction” – Final Evaluation, Internship Lay Committee