Edmonds, WA

Posted February 23, 2012 in Profile

The Rev. Cecilia Kingman piloted one of the earliest common security clubs in her Washington State congregation, calling it “one of the best pastoral tools I’ve used in years in terms of giving members of my congregation a sense of agency in their economic lives.”

Cecilia says the church has a unique role to play in this moment of crisis:  “All of the old stories are failing us, and we need new stories.  Religion is the only institution that creates new stories, and a new theology.” Cecilia has served several congregations in the past decade, and has observed a heightening amount of anxiety and depression in her congregations over that time.  “People are overwhelmed by grief and anxiety … part of my job is to put grief work before them on a regular basis.  I try to be deft about it—one upcoming service is about “how to keep moving forward in times of despair” as we deal with climate change, the economy, and so on.  Rather than provide the congregation with false assurances, I’m approaching the situation through the story of Jonah in the belly of the whale: we have to feel the loss and despair first.  If we are clinging to trying not to feel bad, then there’s no possibility of real transformation.”

Contact: For more information about Resilience Circles and Common Security Clubs in the Seattle area, contact Glenn Scott Davis, 206-734-5436 or developingyourworkforce@gmail.com.