Gratitude a Theme of Interfaith Thanksgiving Service
The Unitarian Universalist Congregational Society of Westborough hosted Wednesday night's service.
Westborough's 40th Annual Interfaith Community Service Thanksgiving Service included wisdom from Hebrew Scripture, Christian Scripture, the Ute Indians of North America, an anonymous poet, and a Springfield Nuclear Power Plant safety inspector.
"A Prayer of Gratitude" by Homer -- Simpson -- was recited by Rabbi Rachel Gurevitz during her sermon, "A Thankful Heart Changes Everything."
While praying, Simpson says, "You freeze everything the way it is, and I won't ask for anything else," Gurevitz told the crowd at the Unitarian Universalist Congregational Society of Westborough on Wednesday night.
"Really the only thing in this world that stays the same is change," said Gurevitz, the spiritual leader of Congregation B'nai Shalom.
Gurevitz gave the sermon in place of the Rev. Derek Duncan, lead pastor of the Chapel of the Cross.
Duncan's grandmother died recently, said the Rev. Cynthia Frado, minister of the Unitarian Universalist church.
Early in Wednesday night's service, what Frado called "a candle of honor and a candle of memory" were lit.
The candle of honor was for "the many, many clergy who have served the town of Westborough," said Frado, president of the Westborough Interfaith Clergy Association.
The candle of memory was for Duncan's grandmother, as well as Lizzi Marriott, among others, Frado said.
A short time later, Frado invited the children in attendance to come sit near her as she told a story, "Pennies From Heaven."
The main character, a boy named William, experiences "the worst year of his life," as his grandmother dies and then Hurricane Sandy destroys his home, Frado said.
Asked by a teacher to identify the blessings in his life, William learns he needs the blessing of gratitude, Frado said.
"Even those in the hardest times," she said, "can find something to be grateful for."