This Sunday’s Service – Faith in Action: Five Stories of Courage, Action, and Faith

February 18 Service at 10:30 AM

Bonnie Hurd Smith

“Faith in Action: Five Stories of Courage, Action, and Faith from Our Unitarian Universalist Tradition.” This talk will inform, engage, and inspire you as she demonstrates how relevant our remarkable foremothers are to our lives today. The re-issued edition of Bonnie’s book on this subject will appear in 2018.

Bonnie Hurd Smith is a lay leader within our UU tradition who has led services throughout New England. She is an author, speaker, and publisher, and the acknowledged expert on the Universalist essayist from Gloucester Judith Sargent Murray. She chairs the Archives Committee of the First Church in Salem, UU.

This Sunday’s Service – When she spoke out- part 1

February 11 Service at 10:30 AM

Rev. Julie Lombard, Minister

In trying to better understand what Religious Authority is or might means to Unitarian Universalists, we have the advantage to turn to many a rich history of examples. In part 1 of this sermon series, we will look to a woman from within our Universalist side of our tradition that drew upon her religious authority to give her the strength and conviction to speak out. How can be like her? What is it about her Universalist beliefs that empowered her to speak out? Is there room for us to buck higher authorities to listen to what is our hearts? How far are we willing to go on this faith journey?

This Sunday’s Service – Hack the Cage

February 4 Service at 10:30 AM

Rachel Burlock

The opioid crisis has hit many of our communities hard, and the debate about the best way to combat addiction is raging on all levels of our society. While opiates are proving particularly deadly, addiction in all its forms causes irreparable damage to countless lives and continues cycles of trauma across generations. Instead of viewing addiction as either a moral failing (a view often taken by the conservative right) or a purely chemical disease (the liberal left’s paradigm), a third perspective based on the “Rat Park” experiment of the 1970s offers us another way to engage with addiction on a personal level. How can we as Unitarian Universalists engage with addiction in our society, our community, and our families?

Rachel Burlock has been a Radio Shack manager, medical interpreter, burrito engineer, Methodist pastor, musician, and equity research analyst. She earned a Master of Divinity from Boston University in 2011, and soon after made the switch from United Methodism to Unitarian Universalist. In 2014 she self-released an album called Blocks which is on the Internet. Rachel and her husband John currently perform and record as the band Feisty Pants, when they’re not working grownup jobs and taking care of their daughters Molly (6) and Fiona (4). Rachel cherishes every chance she has to speak to others about her own spiritual journey and to share whatever value others might get from her story.

This Sunday’s Service – UnEarthing Mary Moody Emerson

January 28 Service at 10:30 AM

Nancy Haverington

Mary Moody Emerson, Ralph Waldo Emerson’s aunt and tutor, had been writing to him for several years about nature’s superiority to traditional religion. In one letter, she wrote, “Nature is my pulpit.” When Waldo’s young wife died, the loss shook him to the core and haunted him with questions about his vocation as a minister. Aunt Mary invited him to her sanctuary in the White Mountains of Maine, where they together confronted Nature, God, and each other. This experience changed both of them, and New England history. Haverington’s sermon will tell Mary’s story and raise the questions they wrestled with. Nancy Haverington, a playwright, screenwriter, former minister and Emerson scholar, will tell Mary’s story and explore the questions they wrestled with.

The music today will be our Singing Group led by Helen Brandt with Judy Putnam at the piano.

This Sunday’s Service – Embracing Brokenness

January 21 Service at 10:30 AM

Rev. Julie Lombard, Minister

A couple of years ago, Parker Palmer gave a compelling commencement address at Naropa University, a place known for merging Western scholarship with Eastern wisdom in a context of contemplative practice. As Parker warmly welcomed the new graduates to a world in deep need of their competence and compassion, he shared with them six suggestions for the road ahead. In 2013, Sheryl Sandberg wrote Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead and in 2017, Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience and Finding Joy. Hear how the sudden death of her spouse changed the way this American technology executive, activist, and author embraced her own brokenness. Come and mine the wisdom of Parker and Sandberg – fodder for us all.

There will be special “four-hand” music as Judy Putnam Music Director is joined by two of her piano colleagues from Brooksby Village. Their selections will include Brahms, Dvorak, and others from a four-hand concert they performed at Brooksby last November.

This Sunday’s Service – Black Lives of Unitarian Universalism

January 14 Service at 10:30 AM

Lois Markham

What would it be like if our UU worship service centered entirely around the voices and the experiences of black Unitarian Universalists? What truths might we hear, however difficult? What might we learn? How might these black UU leaders teach us to be better allies, better siblings in faith, and even better citizens in our community? In celebration of the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., this service will focus on the experiences and teachings of black Unitarian Universalists.

Helen Brandt will direct the Singing Group bringing us some powerful and beautiful music to honor MLK, Jr.  Judy Putnam will be at the piano.

This Sunday’s Service – The Soul of the Broken Family

January 7 Service at 10:30 AM

Rev. Julie Lombard, Minister

The Jewish Tradition offers us a very different way to approach family in the context of religion that we can apply at the start of a New Year—the family’s principle purpose is to create a context for moral identity, spirituality, community, and purpose. Yet many of us have experienced through years of complicated dynamics within our families, we are at a crossroads: We can fight to change the dynamics of our dysfunctional families — trusting in the incredible power to transform ourselves and others. Or we can say it can go this far and no further. We will no longer be paralyzed by what isn’t or wasn’t right in our homes. Is it possible that this is the beginning of something completely new? Let us explore how the New Year could be a moment in which our accounting of the Soul of our Family allows us to turn to our loved ones and say, “I’m willing to try to do this differently.”

The music today will be solo piano by Judy Putnam, Music Director