In order for you to gain an understanding of who Silverside Church is, we need to give you an overview of the ideals to which we are committed followed by a look at what we do "at church" and, finally, the causes in which we invest our time and money away from our building. Here are some of our primary commitments.
We hold varying understandings of who Jesus was and what his relationship with God was, but we are committed to the importance of an informed interpretation of Jesus' teachings as a guide for spiritual wholeness and personal morality. Our opinions differ as to what exactly Jesus may have meant here or there in a report from one of the Gospels, but when we have found the core or intent of a teaching we happily and gratefully embrace it--not as a mandate or requirement but as a guide or word of encouragement.
We are committed to the processes of finding truth and direction in scripture and other written sources. Most of us would agree that truth, including spiritual truth, is often found in Judeo-Christian scripture, in scripture from religions other than Judaism and Christianity, and in utterly non-religious literature. We cannot endorse the notion that everything included in Judeo-Christian scripture is ethical, applicable to twenty-first century life, and/or useful. (This is one of the reasons that our children's Sunday School teachers are very cautious about which Bible stories to share with the kids; see more about this on our Kids' page.)
- We are committed to the care of the Earth.
- We are committed to aesthetics as a primary source for spiritual enhancement.
- We are committed to the benefits of scientific inquiry as well as learning in other fields of endeavor; there is no need for conflict between spirituality and intellectual rigor.
- We are committed to affirming the dignity of every human being on the face of the planet. Therefore, LGBTQ members and friends are as welcome as those who identify themselves as heterosexual. Therefore, we believe that every human being in the world is entitled to life's basics--clean water, adequate nourishment, safe shelter. Therefore, we believe that such dignity leaves us no right to be judgmental of anyone who struggles or fails.
- We are committed to the value and wonder of life at every stage; we welcome members and friends of all ages.
- We are committed to the enjoyment and care of all our members and friends--whether they are celebrating or suffering or doing nothing at all out of the ordinary.
- We are committed to the necessities for and possibilities of change; we value our heritage without losing sight of the responsibility for remaining relevant in our ever-changing world.