"The Community of 100 Acre Woods": The Winnie-the-Pooh stories and characters remind us that, though they represent deep and nuanced philosophical traditions, what is abidingly true is that they are a community. In this weeks sotry, we will learn alongside the characters how to respond when a birthday (Eeyore's of course!) is forgotten. All ages are welcome in this service. Please consider bringing a friend or family member to experience the Winnie-the-Pooh charm with you.
Dia de los Muertos (The Day of the Dead): During this multigenerational service we will honor the lives of our loved ones who have died. You are invited to bring a photo or a small memento to place on our ofrenda during our time of celebration. With Rev. Anastassia and the All Souls Choir.
"Time to Disconnect and Reconnect": The expectation that we will regularly check-in via our cell phones and social media has become ubiquitous and its poor health effects have been documented. How can practices of Sabbath help us establish preservative boundaries in our lives? What will such practices make available to us? How can we become connected by disconnecting?
In 1907, Dr. Frank Scott Corey Wicks, All Souls' longest serving minister, delivered a sermon “Good Men In Hell”, that was reprinted the next day in the Indianapolis Star and published and reprinted by the American Unitarian Association over thirty times. It was among the most widely circulated Unitarian sermons, and posited the idea that the Unitarian mandate was to go to troubled places and be with troubled people. Where would we go and whom would we be with if we lived this mandate today? Rev. Anastassia preaching.
In 1819, William Ellery Channing claimed the slur "Unitarian", proclaiming distinct theological sources and establishing the grounding propositions of Unitarianism. 200 years later, how can we recenter Channing's message? What is our radical and real message to our times? Rev. Anastassia preaching.
This month we will explore the big theological ideas in Unitarian Universalism by returning to some of the most famous sermons, but the ideas that matter are the ones that are most central to our own ordinary and extraordinary lives. Come hear some of our All Souls members share the theological tenets that mean the most to them, and how they are in their lives.
On this Ingathering Sunday, we will come together as one community, formed from all the living generations, to bless each other through our water communion. As we begin our series “Let Justice Roll Down,” we will consider how the justice-making that we do collectively ought to begin with blessing, forgiveness, commitment, and love. Children and youth are invited to bring their backpacks to be blessed as they head into a new school year. All are invited to bring some water from a favorite local swimming hole, a kitchen faucet, or somewhere they've been this summer. Featuring Rev. Anastassia and the All Souls Choir.
The first Father's Day was a sombre event. It was held as a pastoral response to the Monogah Mining Disaster, which killed 361 men and 250 fathers in West Virginia. Today, we honor the sacrifice of fathers and all the fathering we have received and given.
Memorial Day has its origins in the United States when Americans began honoring those who died on both sides of the Civil War. America is again in a period of deep division. How can this holiday encourage us to see value in those who sacrifice themselves not only for what they believe in, but also for those who hold significantly different values? Sermon beginning at 31:40.
Once we have seen the world and savored its beauty, then we know we are called to save it, both for itself and for ourselves. Let us dedicate ourselves to saving this earth.
Ralph Waldo Emerson recognized that the world is meant to be savored and we are designed to savor it. Why is the act of savoring essential for our spiritual lives?
No amount of teaching can parallel the assurance we get from first-hand experience. To see really is to believe, but what are we seeing in the world today?
Sports have often been a metaphor for war and an outlet for human aggression and competition. In this fourth book in the Harry Potter series, J.K. Rowling intentionally blurs the line between "fictional" and real violence. In our own lives, we see that the rules of civility and order have begun to break down and that many Americans are forming opposing and radicalized camps. What are the signs of this happening? What does it call us to pay attention to?
Our fears paralyze us and prevent us from living fully. No matter what stage of life we are in, we are living with fears that hold us back. In the third Harry Potter book, Harry and his friends discover powerful tools to face their deepest fears - tools that will serve them throughout the series. Come and learn how memories of joy and love, and the timely use of humor and imagination, can help us face what frightens us the most.
In the second book of the Harry Potter series, Harry and his companions are faced with an ancient deadly secret, discover prejudice amongst their fellow witches and wizards, and are threatened by dark magic. It is only when they learn to share, be vulnerable, and lean on the help of their community that Harry and his friends are able to survive. Our high school youth reflect on this theme in this service with sermonettes.
In the first Harry Potter book, Harry encounters the Mirror of Erised, which shows the most desperate desire of a person's heart, a vision that has been known to drive men mad. Ancient myths and theologies too played with the metaphor of reflection, as a means to show what we often have trouble perceiving without assistance. In this case, the Mirror of Erised is a good reminder of the Buddhist practice of non-attachment.