Seating Thoughts, October 2014

Church pews

“Part of being a Unitarian is the continued examination of life, both that around us as well as our own.  Prompted by Rev. Margaret Kirk’s service covering our differences (and mutual tolerances of), I began thinking. Whilst we have discussed it before I wondered if our default seating arrangements at Sunday services may say something about us.

Over the years we have become friends, yet we elect to sit as complete strangers.  Are we spreading out simply to fill the pews and continue this out of habit, or does the physical separation symbolise the different beliefs and thoughts we each rightly carry?  Margaret’s concern is that any silence between us, be it through diffidence, diplomacy or awkwardness can lead to us ‘rushing to fill the space with our own ideas and beliefs’.

Perhaps we should be doing as Margaret suggested and examining our differing beliefs and in doing so become more supportive and tolerant of one another?  One proposed idea of having a regular post-service discussion to examine what we have just heard is, I believe, a very good step toward this.”

Jamie Scott, November 2014