Myra Kibler, our speaker today whose topic is Jesus, was born four years before the gospel of Thomas was discovered. She grew up in Mississippi, a social outcast for befriending gays and taking an integration bill to Youth Congress. She was president of the Senior High Fellowship of the Presbyterian Church when she lost her faith. She wrote her high school senior thesis on the Dead Sea Scrolls.
At Millsaps College in MS, Myra studied two semesters of Religion, only because it was required. She learned there about the synoptic gospels and wrote a paper comparing Christianity and Buddhism. She did not attend church during college. Other than the religion class, she focused on academics and, always the party girl, sorority life. According to Myra, "Apprehending the miracle of evolution during a Zoology final was the most profound religious experience of my life."
She returned to church only briefly during a summer when she attended a stimulating college-age Sunday School class at the Presbyterian Church. But, when the minister turned away four black people from the church doors, Myra left and never went back to any Christian church. About nine years later, Myra discovered Unitarianism in Valdosta, GA where she was a harried mother of two babies and writing her dissertation for a PhD at Emory. Her husband was teaching at Valdosta State University. Myra says, "The people at the Valdosta Fellowship saved me from the doldrums of that period of my life. I was RE teacher, then president there, and then served a term on the Florida District Board."
Myra's life has had more twists and turns than she says are worth recounting, but she has been a member of eight Unitarian churches over the years, while changing husbands three times and careers four times. She goes on to say "Unitarianism has been the constant in my life for almost fifty years."
When she retired from her last career as administrator at UUCA, she chose to locate in Ellijay because, in addition to the mountains, it had a Unitarian church. Myra has been at Mountain Light for five years, has served on Membership, Sunday Services, and on the Board. Currently, she serves on the Leadership Development Team and the MLUUC Membership Team. And, occasionally, she takes the pulpit. Welcome, Myra.