Sunday Morning Worship is held in the Sanctuary at 10 AM from the Sunday after Labor Day through late June.
The Sunday worship service is a journey that we take together. The idea is to journey into a deepening, by building community, sharing what’s in our hearts and minds, and singing along the way! The order of service has been structured to reflect this journey. It begins with an overarching theme or message that is listed at the top of the order of service. Out of that quotation, the journey unfolds.
We begin with the gentle striking of our singing bowl which is a large crystal bowl that is tuned to resonant with the heart. This sound quiets our talking as we settle into our seats and give our attention to the church leader bringing us greetings. Afterwards, the bowl is struck again, and we are invited into the first notes of the prelude, our cue to turn our hearts toward this sacred time.
There are four segments to our journey: in the first segment, Entering into Sacred Space, you are welcomed into the space and the beginning of our worship time together. One of our first acts in worship is to light our flaming chalice, the symbol of our faith tradition, which was adopted by the Unitarian Universalist Association in 1961, at the time of the merger of the Universalist Church in America and the American Unitarian Association. Since we value the young people who are part of our congregation, and the opportunity for them to be in worship with us, this segment is generally the family portion where children older than 3 remain in the sanctuary with the adults. This time also functions as a kind of a mini-worship time for the children. After “A Time for All Ages” the children leave the sanctuary to join the age-appropriate religious education program. Parents reconvene with their children after the service.
In the second segment, Building Beloved Community, in essence we “begin again.” Here we inform each other of upcoming events as relates to the ministries of the church. We share our abundance (first time visitors are not expected to donate), and our joys and sorrows (by lighting a “spoken” candle), as we begin to go deeper with each other. After we have shared these communal gifts, in the third segment, Exploration, we journey inward using the theme to frame the meditation time. Once our hearts have been opened and we have cleared our minds of distracting thoughts, we can more fully listen to the message of the sermon. In the final segment, Sending Forth, with the singing of the last hymn, we begin to turn toward returning to the world. Our last spoken word is a benediction which is related to the theme and expressed as a blessing. Then we return to our seats to give ourselves the gift of wonderful music once more as we make our transition from the worship hour back into “ordinary time.” The postlude is an final opportunity to quietly reflect on the blessings of being in this place at this time.
Our minister leads the service three times a month, and on other Sundays the service is led by a lay member of the congregation, or a guest. We warmly look forward to meeting you, and invite you to come take a journey with us.
Friendship Hour: As important as anything that happens in the Sunday Service is the opportunity to make new friends and connect with older ones, all of which builds the bonds of our community. Congregation members are happy to meet and talk with you, to share impressions and experiences, and to welcome you to a church that encourages each person’s unique spiritual journey.