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Services at First Unitarian Church

UPCOMING SERVICES

January 19. Begin Before Knowing (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
Nearly all of the most transformative movements in our history began with ordinary people taking one first action, without knowing where that action would lead. As we honor Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s enduring legacy of a better world this weekend, how can we find the faith to sustain us from those early first actions to the promised land of a world awakened fully to love and justice?

January 26. Built Entirely Out of Attentiveness (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
The Poet Mary Oliver writes “the soul exists and it is built entirely out of attentiveness.” And yet many of us struggle mightily with our culture’s endless flashy distractions. How would we focus our lives differently if attention built our very souls? How can we reclaim attentiveness?

February 2. Tell Them I Said Yes to Life (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
Sometimes, life’s challenges feel so overwhelming that we may want to say “no” to the world; to close ourselves off, or shut our surroundings out. When our energy feels completely drained, where do we find the strength to answer our life’s deepest call?

For other upcoming events at the church, check out our church calendar.

PAST SERVICES

January 12. Life in Harmony (Rev. Hannah Capaldi)
We get goosebumps when we hear human voices harmonize, the simple and pure blending of notes to create dimension. Those sounds and our response to them feels primal, extra-ordinary, from beyond. What is it about the balance and blend in harmonies that resonates so deeply? This service will explore the ways we might bring harmony to our own lives.


January 5. Let the Sabbath Keep You  (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
We get goosebumps when we hear human voices harmonize, the simple and pure blending of notes to create dimension. Those sounds and our response to them feels primal, extra-ordinary, from beyond. What is it about the balance and blend in harmonies that resonates so deeply? This service will explore the ways we might bring harmony to our own lives.

December 29. Behold: A Time for Healing is Upon Us (Rev. Zemoria Brandon)
Join us for a celebratory worship service as we close out this current year and open doors to a New Year filled with possibilities to heal and embrace a future of brighter days ahead.

December 24. 94th Annual Christmas Eve Candlelit Service (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
Join us for our annual candlelit service to share the ancient story of hope reborn, sing carols, and reflect on the meaning of Christmas in our lives and in the world. And please bring a plate of cookies or treats to share during our wassail reception following service. Childcare will be provided. Service begins at 6:30pm in the Sanctuary.

December 22. The Back of God (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
Jewish teachings remind us that sometimes the workings of holiness in our lives make no sense in real time and only become clear in hindsight. In this time of Hanukkah and Winter Solstice, time of darkness and light, mystery and miracle, what gifts might we find in the unknown sacred that pervades our lives

December 15. Telling It All Together: An Intergenerational Pageant (Rev. Hannah Capaldi
Join us for an intergenerational service where we will recreate the Jesus birth story with costumes, props, and hymns. Bringing joy and light heartedness to a time-worn story, aided by the presence of children and families, helps remind us of the magic of this time of year.

December 8. 
Rest Assured (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
Sundays, we sing the words of Rev. Dr. Rebecca Parker’s Universalist prayer, “There is a Love holding us … holding all we love … holding all; we rest in this Love.” In this world of uncertainty and mystery, how can we rest assured in a Love that holds all?

December 1. Mystery or Miracle? (Crystal Mann)
This month’s theme, mystery, is full of enigmas for people of faith, people of science, and those that are a little of both. You will be given the facts, but you still have to decide.

November 24. The End of the World as We Know It (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
In the 1970s, children we taught that cleaning up litter would save the world. In the 1980s, it was recycling. Today's children are learning that climate disaster is immanent unless our entire society undergoes dramatic transformation. How can our faith renew our hope, sustain our activism, and prepare us for what is to come as our world transforms, for better or worse?

November 17. The Peace of Wild Things (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
The Buddha said “Praise and blame, gain and loss, pleasure and sorrow come and go like the wind. To be happy, rest like a giant tree in the midst of them all.” This morning, we look to nature for lessons on living a life of abundant peace.

November 10. Let my Love Be Heard (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
"Grief is the cost of love," we are told. In a world where impermanence is the only constant, where grief is inevitable, how can our love make a lasting mark

November 3. We Will Be Known (Hannah Capaldi)
If we are to be known as a welcoming church, a place where we all belong, how do we treat those who are just passing through? Must we know someone a long time to love them well?

October 27. The Great Family of All Souls (Rev. Abbey Tennis, Hannah Capaldi, and Rev. Alison Cornish)
Our faith tradition affirms that we are inescapably interdependant with each other. What do we owe to one another as members of this great family? And when abuse and dysfunction happen in the human family, how do we return safety and healing to our center?

October 13. Small Kindnesses (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
We are bombarded with stories of conflict by reality TV, water cooler gossip, the news, and more. Yet all day everywhere around the world people are quietly working together for the common good. How might we be transformed if we awaken ourselves to the human kindness and cooperation that surrounds us but is so easily taken for granted?

October 6. Atonement (Hannah Capaldi)
The High Holy Day of Yom Kippur offers us a time for reflection and consideration on the act of forgiveness.  Perhaps the person needing forgiveness most this season is yourself.  For in the words of RuPaul,"If you can't love yourself, how the hell you going to love someone else?"

September 29.
Alone in the Crowd (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
Each of us has, at one point, been surrounded by people yet still felt utterly alone. Where can we find deep belonging in a world plagued by lonliness?

September 22.
Loved into Loving (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
From our births, people have 'smiled us into smiling, sung us into singing, and loved us into loving,' we are told by Mr. Rogers. Yet we also know that poverty begets poverty and trauma begets trauma. How can we find, and build, the kind of community that creates more joy, music, love, and justice into the world?

September 15. Off the Pedestal: Reconciling Relationships in Beloved Community (Hannah Capaldi)
The Beloved Community is built on redemption and reconciliation. The Beloved Community is for everyone, even those that have harmed us or done wrong by us. How do we, as people of faith, stay in relationship with those we would prefer to cast out? In today's culture of calling out and canceling, what does the Beloved Community look like?

September 8. Water Communion: Groundwater of Being (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
Sometimes it feels like our well has run dry. How can we refill our souls when we're running on empty? In this ingathering Sunday, we return to our Sanctuary and 11:00AM service time to celebrate our annual intergenerational Water Communion service. Don't forget to bring a small amount of water from a place that is meaningful to you for our ritual!

September 1. Improv as Spiritual Practice: Making It up as We Go (David O'Connor)
The rules that govern good improv play are worth exploring as a way to live in community with others. Let's play together and see what sticks!

August 25. Blessing of the Animals (Rev. Abbey Tennis)
Bring your (well-behaved and/or crated) pets to receive a blessing in this intergenerational service celebrating our relationships to the non-human community of life. Pictures of shy or departed pets, stuffed animals, or other symbolic animals are invited to receive a blessing too!

August 18. Are People Good? (Phaedra Tinder)
How do we square a desire to see the best in others with the harms we know people are capable of? What does "being a good person" even mean? This week we consider this tension and try to imagine what living with it might look like in practice.

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