Restore Us to Memory

A Service Presented via Zoom April 2021.

Call to Worship  Rev. “Twinkle” Marie Manning

Let turn our attention to the sacred 

as we consider the words 

of Poet David Whyte when he says:

“Memory is not just a then

recalled in a now,

the past is never just the past,

memory is a pulse passing through 

all created life,

a wave form,

a then continually becoming other thens,

all the while creating a continual 

but almost untouchable 


Every human life 

holds the power 

of this immense inherited pulse,

holds and then supercharges it,

according to the way 

we inhabit our identities

in the untouchable now.

Memory is an invitation 

to the source of our life,

to a fuller participation in the now,

to a future about to happen,

but ultimately to a frontier identity  

that holds them all at once.

Memory makes the ‘now’ fully inhabitable.”

Let us accept this invitation 

and explore together this Gift of Memory.

Story For All Ages: 

“Miss Rumphius,” Written and Illustrated by Barbara Cooney, 

Reading: “Love Will Remain” (abridged) by Sheryl Crow

 READING – Love Will Remain (abridged) Sheryl Crow

Special Music: If I Can Help Somebody

Words and Music by Alma Bazel Androzzo

Sermon/Pastoral Message: 

Restore Us to Memory

by: Rev. “Twinkle” Marie Manning

Mnemosyne (Nem-o-scene-y),

the Greek goddess of Memory,

was considered one of the most powerful 

goddesses of her time.

Revered during a time when Memory 

was of the utmost importance.

At a time long before the written word

was incorporated into language,

Memory was critical to the well-being 

of an individual 

and a society

who had to rely solely 

on the lessons and history passed on

in an oral tradition. 

Mnemosyne is remembered as being

the mother of the nine Muses,

each of which represents 

what could be summed up 

as the embodimental elements 

of the human experience, our expressions of:

  • History
  • Astronomy
  • Epic and Love Poetry
  • Tragedy
  • Comedy
  • Dance
  • Music, Songs and Religious Hymns

The memory of Mnemosyne was all inclusive

— it was the memory of the rules and energies of the universe,

the cycle of life,

the people,  animals  and objects on Earth,

the memory of how to live in the world.

And the world, beyond.

Mnemosyne’s memory served as 

protection, beacon, and blessing.

Another revered female figure 

both Saint and Goddess,

depending on the source: 

is Bhrigid, or Brigit, Brigid

also closely tied to the arts, poetry and memory.

A prayer-poem dedicated to her 

conveys how important memories were 

to those of Celtic origins:

Brigid of the Mantle,  encompass us,

Lady of the Lambs,  protect us,

Keeper of the Hearth,  kindle us.

Beneath your mantle,  gather us,

And restore us to Memory.

Poetic examination of this text 

indicates the use of “Mantle”

associates the theme with the part of our brain

that plays a large role 

in the processing of information,

in consciousness, awareness

…the creation of memory: 

(the cerebral cortex). 

We can conclude that 

not only is this a beseeching of

being remembered by the Deity,

but also having one’s own mind transformed

to a renewed condition of health

so that the essence of memory 

is whole.

This kind of desire 

for memory and remembrance 

is echoed through many religious sources.

Many believe there is 

an etheric Keeper of such memories,

be it Mnemosyne,

or Brigid,    

or St. Peter at the Gates of the Christian Heaven.

At a human level, 

We are each other’s Keepers 

– of Memories

And, we want to share 

our memories with others.

Along our journeys,

In our quiet moments;

In our public exchanges;

In our pursuit of 

understanding the world we reside in

and our purpose in it,

We are affected by each other.

And we want to be remembered 

as who we know ourselves to be.

For being remembered 

as who we know ourselves to be

means being understood

To be understood creates a sense of belonging

Which is an intrinsic human desire,

indeed, an intrinsic human need.

Cultures around the world for millennia 

have left evidence

of their desire to preserve Memory.

Pictographs and Petroglyphs in Arizona;

Hieroglyphics in Egypt;

Cuneiform (Coo nā a-form) Script 

throughout Iraq, Iran, Syria, and Turkey

Each provide more than a mere glimpse

at primitive civilizations that once existed;

Often thought of as the mechanism to disseminate

the doctrines of gods

and dogma of humans,

These writings and pictures also give insight

as to what once were their daily lives,

family shapes and sizes,

rituals, cultural norms 

and power structures.

The art portrays the observations 

of these ancient people,

from documenting 

celestial representations 

of the solar cycle

to characterizing animals, 

vegetation, landscapes and waterways

of the natural, and supernatural, worlds. 

Some of such, 

very subjective in its observational tone,

drawing attention to that which 

must have held significance

to the observer,

creating a better understanding 

between ancient artist

and present-day patron.

One such example is of rock art 

discovered a few years ago in Egypt 

depicting a herd of elephants 

– one of the elephants 

has a little elephant inside of it

representing a pregnant female.

Seemingly a small distinction,

yet at that point in history 

apparently a rare way 

of illustrating a gestating animal.

Carved between 4,000-3,500 B.C.E., 

this discovery in the Spring of 2017

by an expedition of archeologists 

led by Yale Professor John Coleman Darnell

was surprising to the archeologists.

For while Ancient Egyptian 

Hieroglyphics and art 

have been widely found 

throughout that region,

this discovery unveiled 

monument size hieroglyphs

meant to be seen and read 

from a great distance.

Compared to a modern-day billboard,

the location of these inscriptions 

show a kind of writing

that until recently 

was believed to be only used by

the ruling class at that time

and used for bureaucratic purposes.

Yet prominently placed where they were

on what would have been 

a route well-traveled by the general public,

it indicates that the messages

on this “road sign” or “wayside pulpit”

were readily accessible 

to the understanding of more than merely

the most privileged of the day.

In archaeological frameworks 

what this means

is that the clock has been turned back

and the point in time 

they have long-believed

the Egyptian writing system 

first became accessible

to the general population 

is much longer ago.

And while we do not know 

the artists and scribes by name,

their legacy,

their memory of their time on Earth,    

lives on,

grows and expands though these findings.

Informing those who have access to it. 

Then and Now.

So it is, too, 

with the memories we are creating today.

Individually and Collectively.


It is not just a recollection of

“What once happened”

Memory has a life of its own.

In the current moment.

Drawing on past, 

present and anticipated future 

to inform it.

The best way to preserve 

Long Term Perpetuation of Memory

is to pay attention to it 

as it is unfolding,

the magical 

and the mundane moments.

Scientists tell us memories 

are encoded most strongly

when we are paying attention,

when we are alert,

when we are deeply engaged

and when information is meaningful to us.

Protective measures can be put in place

to better equip us 

towards the preservation of memory.

For we humans have some 

obstacles to overcome

when it comes to what 

we could call “memory thieves.”

Mental and physical health problems 

in particular

interfere with our ability 

to pay attention 

and to recall.

Depression. Isolation.

Also strip away our mind’s ability

to hold 

with accuracy 

recollection of past memories

and encoding of new ones

as those who are in depressed 

and/or isolated states

are often focused on 

past events 


future worries

and replaying such over and over in their minds

and as such 

they are not entirely present 

for current moments.

Experts in the memory field 

have noted that socialization 

is another

contributing factor 

to whether or not 

our memories are strong.

Studies have shown 

that people with high levels

of social integration 

have a higher rates 

of recollection.

It is suggested this is because 

social interaction is akin to

mental aerobics,

maintaining muscle strength – muscle memory if you will. 

As such interactive, uplifting conversations

are a good workout for our brains.


like learning a new language or skill,

is like Yoga for our brains.

And while we are considering 

movement and exercise,

as with the rest of our body 

that improves its health.

With physical activity 

that increases blood flow 

including to the brain.

This along with 

consuming nourishing foods 

aide in the brain’s Neuroplasticity

which helps us to organize information

and be flexible and welcoming 

of new ideas.

And, today, 

perhaps more than ever in history…

Chronic Stress 

is a key component to memory loss.

Similar to Depression, 

when we are in Chronic Stress mode,

we are not fully present 

for muchof Life’s genuine experiences.

Chronic Stress keeps our bodies 

on hyper-alert.

Many of us are overloaded with work,

personal and family responsibilities,

and the inundation 

of negative media and news,

which are responded to 

with increasingly urgent calls to action

one after the other  after the other,

addressing multitude 

of public concerns 

that we focus on. 

Our body’s stress response mechanisms

are meant to signal our minds

to become alert

and our bodies 

to become activate.

This physiological stress-response 

mobilization system

is designed to make sure 

we can survive in a crisis. 

And then reset.

Coming back to a calmer state of Being.

Without extended calm periods, 

our bodies become 

flooded with chemicals

that result in 

a loss of brain cells 


an inability to form new ones.

This affects our ability 

to retain information.

It affects our ability 

to make good decisions.

It affects our quality of life, 

and the quality of Living we can engage with.

As a People of Faith:

We respond quickly to injustices.

We respond intuitively to the needs of others.

With the rampant media 

informing us daily, 

even hourly,

of each impending crisis, locally, globally.

With ever-emerging movements

tugging on our bodies, minds and spirits

to contribute all that we are

in gestures of solidarity 

so that we can make the world new again,

Many are exhausted!

And, need to rest.

Now, I am not suggesting you set down the mantels of social justice,

for that would be blasphemy

if ever there were such sacrilege to be named

in your creed-less faith tradition. 

But what I am suggesting,

What I’m imploring

And what I am asking     

is for you to give yourself permission 

to rest.

Instead of passing through Life 

in a blur of pressings and pressure,

Find balance.

Practice being attentive to Nature, 

to people,

to the changes of the season 

and of the landscapes and of the sky.

Notice the light 

as it shines through your window 

each morning,

And the stars in the nighttime sky.

Notice each other!

Pause    and notice how your lover’s eyes light up

when you enter a room…

Lover’s…. Let your eyes light up when your lover

enters a room.

Smile! Laugh!

Smiles and laughter make memories.

So do tears,

Take time when they are called for.

Let them flow 

and accept what that moment offers.

Embrace this human experience.

Take a vacation 

to explore something new

Visit a sibling our cousin 

or neighboring congregation 

once in awhile. 

There are plentifold ways 

to access online these days 

and at different times during the week.

It is an opportunity to make 

connections with those who share

similar values, hopes and dreams. 

It is also an opportunity to connect 

with those who hold foreign beliefs, 

philosophically, politically,

and a way to understand more deeply 

why they do.


With  many talented musicians within your ranks,

I know I am truly 

preaching to the choir! 

So, Yes, sing!

And listen to music.

And Dance.

Move as you are able.

Dine together.

Hug each other.

Hold each other.

Rejoice in each other.

There is a Navajo Prayer

That says:

When you were born 

you cried,

and the world rejoiced.

Live your life so 

that when you die,

the world cries

and you rejoice.

Make memorable moments  –  into memories.


  • Healthy Diet and Exercise
  • Carefree Socialization
  • Loving Relationships
  • A Sense of Community and Belonging
  • Mental and Emotional Rest
  • Spiritual Nourishment

All contribute to better memory storage.

All contribute to better Memory Making!


Restore you to memory.

May Love reside here.

May you take time to rest.

And, may you live your Life 

so that you rejoice!


Pastoral Benediction   Rev. “Twinkle” Marie Manning

May the memories you most cherish 

continue to serve you;

And may you continue to make good memories together, 

and hold them close.

Remember you Belong to Each Other. 

Keep in Mind that every moment 

is an opportunity to make a memory.

Make ones 

you want to remember

And be remembered by.

May it be so.


When you were born 

you cried,

and the world rejoiced.

Live your life so 

that when you die,

the world cries

and you rejoice.

Original Copyright November 2018

Revised and recorded for this video April 2021



Rev. “Twinkle” Marie Porter-Manning is the senior minister for 

The Church of Kineo, an emerging ministry on Moosehead Lake in Maine. 

Twinkle strives to include many philosophies in her services.  

Her interfaith ministry often focuses on the earth-centered, spiritually connected and community building aspects of transformational faith. 

She is the Founder of Twinkle’s Place and Moosehead Lake Retreats,

 and also has a Wedding Officiant service for those seeking to have their wedding ceremony on or around Moosehead Lake.

Much of her theology is contained in Living Life as a Prayer, published by Matrika Press in 2020.