Weaving Together: The dedication of The Polaris Community

Attendees of the dedication weave ribbons in a frame.Members of the United Church Homes (UCH) family gathered on September 8, 2023 to dedicate The Polaris Community in Columbus, Ohio.

Special guests present that day included: Rev. George Graham, Council of Health and Human Service Ministries, United Church of Christ; Rev. Patricia Battle, Central Southeast Ohio Association, Ohio Conference; Rev. Sigrid Rother, Westerville Community, United Church of Christ; Karl Ulrich, Chairman, UCH Board; and The Polaris Community executive director.

“Today, we welcome the covenant promise – a binding between two or more persons or groups that recognizes the spiritual connection between them,” Rev. Dr. Ken Daniel said, before inviting representatives of each of the organizations to receive into covenant relationship with The Polaris Community.Event attendees sitting and talking.

“By these actions, we celebrate the extension of the ministry of United Church Homes into Columbus, Ohio, the Central Southeast Association, the Heartland Conference and the whole United Church of Christ,” Ulrich prayed. “May this community provide care and comfort, abundant living in community, wholeness and peace. And may their service to the church and community be for the building up of the Kingdom of God, through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Rev. Ken Daniel giving a speech about the dedication. “There is a framed weaving that hangs outside my office door,” said Rev. Daniel. “The ribbons which make up the warp and weft represent the various communities and individuals who work together to create the fabric of United Church Homes. They are a reminder of the ways that we each bring our unique gifts and graces adding to the culture in which the Spirit creates abundant life in our communities.”

Gaye Allen, the first resident to make the new community her home, was invited to join others in weaving ribbons representing The Polaris Community into the tapestry – symbolically demonstrating how individual strands become stronger when woven together and the importance of unity, collaboration and spirituality.

Attendees of the dedication weave ribbons in a frame.

A prayer of blessing was then said by Rev. Battle, with all guests invited to celebrate in the spirit of abundant life.

Rev. Beth Long-Higgins showing the weaved ribbons to an event attendee. Rev. Beth Long-Higgins, vice president of engagement and director of the Ruth Frost Parker Center for Abundant Aging, closed the event with a touching benediction:

May you go with the infusion of Christ’s COMPASSION;

Finding ways to share the gift of HOSPITALITY;

May you celebrate with RESPECT, the diversity gathered in each place;

Allowing INTEGRITY to provide you courage to live God’s intentions for peace;

May you be wise STEWARDS of the gifts God has entrusted to your care; and,

May you be TRANSPARENT that others may see God’s love at work in you.

We give thanks for God’s blessing on us as we work to build God’s vision of abundant life in community.