Hello, I’m Linda Holroyd.
Richard asked me to give a UUCPA testimonial, so being a mostly obedient person, here I am.
We are not our label. But if I’m giving you a testimonial, you should have some context or who I am. I’m a first-generation American who’s a serial entrepreneur, working as a director at a VC firm and passionate about innovation and leadership. I’m married to a Googler with a daughter about to graduate from UCLA. I joined the church in August, became a member in October, and pledged my support in February.
I’ve always considered myself an open-minded and spiritual person… but I never seemed to fit in anywhere where there were a lot of rules. There were churches which preached fire and brimstone and even from a young age, I would have none of that. There were people who were less than trustworthy, promoting causes with questionable benefits. That too was not for me.
I found peace in the music, and sometimes in sermons from a wide range of churches throughout the past three decades. But in general, life was too busy to include regular services. My friend and neighbor Jane invited me to try the UUCPA church and choir in August, so I thought I’d check it out. In the first experiences, I found several things.
- Connections between people who obviously cared about each other (many for decades)
- Moments of Peace and Contemplation without judgment
- Stimulation of new ideas, different perspectives
- Joy at the gifts we give and receive
- Hope for a better world, a better tomorrow
So I thought I’d explore further. In general, I make decisions following my head, my heart, my hands. For my head, I found stimulation in the weekly forum discussions. They are always on topics of interest, and always include perspectives of people from a wide range of backgrounds. I must admit that many of the issues of today, including politics, environment, corruption, etc., – are too overwhelming for me to contemplate, too depressing for me to discuss. But the weekly forums help me understand the issues and hear varying thoughts and perspectives around these issues. I am also at times able to contribute to the discussion, which always surprises me.
For my heart, I give the gift of music, as well as the community of the choir and the women’s group. I’m new to music, although I’ve always loved to sing. Thank you to Bruce for his guidance and support, and to Veronika and the choir for including me so warmly.
Thank you to the woman’s group for helping me understand the world from a broader, deeper perspective, and for helping me buff my own rough edges.
For my hands, I’m invested in the success of the community. I actively participate in a forum that discusses sticky issues I’d previously avoided. One day, when a topic I offer is approved, I may actually facilitate a discussion!
I started and run a first Sunday mahjong series so I can teach the game and spread the joy of playing it. I regularly connect with the women in our group and support each of them on their journeys.
I’m a staunch advocate for UUCPA, and I’m happy to provide this testimonial of support.
In closing, I’d like to acknowledge Amy for always placing a mirror in front of all of us, and challenging us to see a better version of ourselves and of each other. Amy, thank you for your guidance on and off the pulpit. I try to always align my thoughts with my words and my actions. You get a sense of my thoughts from my message and you certainly heard my words.
My action is that I made my first pledge to UUCPA this month. If you also believe in UUCPA in thoughts and words, and have the means to do so, please join me in making a pledge.