“Why I love this place”

Aliana Miller, a member of the Senior High Youth Group (SHYG), spoke in the services this past Sunday about why she loves UUCPA:

I love this place for the memories it holds for me. I have come to this church since I was two months old. I sang my first Christmas here. When I was one and a half, I met my best friend here, a person I am still best friends with today. I’ve had birthday parties, made friends, learned from teachers. Looking back, this place was a large part of my childhood. Some of my best memories are of this church.

I love this place for the people. The friends I mentioned have come and gone, but today, many of the best are still here. They are people I’ve known from childhood, and people who have only just become part of this. They are all a part of my life. From this church, I’ve had so many teachers, and learned things I hope I’ll never forget. Everyone I’ve known has changed who I am, I think, for the better- from the Sunday school volunteers to the people I say hi to in the courtyard.

I have learned so much — things I believe no other church would think to teach me. (From Sunday school, I’ve learned about becoming a person I can be proud of.) I have learned about countless other religions and one of the things I love most about Unitarian Universalism — that there is not one true way, but your true way. The church is still helping me find it, with everything it does. What this church offers that I’ve taken — Coming of Age, SHYG — has been very important to helping me find me. Without it, I would be a different person. This church has given me rallies and programs and volunteering. This church has given me something to believe in, and a way to do something about it.

I love this place, I love this church. When I can, I want to become an official member of it. I want to make sure what has meant so much to me in everything never disappears — so I do what I can, donating what I can, volunteering if I can. I want to make sure that what this place will stay what it has been for others, what it is for me — I want to make sure it is the same for those to come. I love this place — I want to make sure others can love it too.

Copyright (c) 2014 Aliana Miller. Used by permission.