Leah’s Blog
Editor Albany UU | Jan 06, 2021


Express Yourself – Create Your Chalice Drawing

As we endure these remaining months of pandemic isolation, I find both irony and inspiration in our theme for January – “Imagination”.  For me, January is a tough month to get through in a good year. There are no holidays to look forward to; I’m not a skier so I’m not wildly enthusiastic about the snow; and though the days are getting longer, the additional minutes of sunlight do not manage to influence the cold temperatures. Normally, in January I would seek the company of friends and loved ones to do puzzles and play games at home, or to brave the cold to go out to movie or dinner together. 

I’ll need a lot of imagination to get through this part of winter this year.  So, I appreciate a drawing and writing exercise from our Soul Matters partners because it lays out step-by-step instructions to spark the imagination. A blank canvass can be daunting! And this exercise invites us to consider different kinds of connections. I think you could make either the drawing or the writing as simple or detailed as you would like. For me, this is a good reason to get out some colored pencils or even some paints. My goal is to share my creation on our Face Page and in our RE platform, The Treehouse. I invite you to do the same. Whether or not you put pen or brush to paper though, simply reading the instructions below might help spark your imagination to create connections.

Whatever spiritual or social practices you’re engaging in, I wish you ease, peace, and safety this month.

In joyful service, 


Our Soul Matters partners challenge us to consider these three connections as sacred bonds:

  • The connection to one’s deepest self
  • The connection to life’s gifts and joy
  • The connection to needs greater than our own

We can imagine the chalice as representing these three sacred connections. Draw a chalice as you reflect on the following symbolisms and resolution questions/commitments:

The flame represents the connection to our inner light and deepest self.

  • What’s one way you will deepen your connection to your inner light/deepest self in the coming months?

The two circles around the chalice symbolize our two faith traditions, with our Unitarian side lifting up the idea that people are inherently good, not sinful and our Universalist side lifting up the idea that the Spirit of Life strives to offer us grace and gifts, not judgement and punishment. Each in their own way reminds us that life is good and full of gifts.  

  • What’s one way you will deepen your connection to life’s gifts in the coming months? I.e. How will you more strongly lean into joy?

The chalice bowl represents our common life together. We also like the way it represents a cup with which one uses to feed or offer drink to others. And in doing so, becomes a reminder of our calling to serve needs greater than our own.

  • What’s one way you will deepen your connection to needs greater than your own in the coming months? I.e. How will you more strongly lean into the work of serving others?