Change: The Only Constant, led by Rev. Jennifer Raffensperger, Guest Minister
There’s no question: 2024 is going to be a year of change. Of course—what year isn’t? When change feels unsettling or scary, how do we shift our relationship in anticipation of change? Our faith calls us to the work of transformation. How can we work to embrace the change that is coming? Can we, from our own relationship and reactions to change, find ways to deepen our call to transformation within ourselves and our faith communities?
Once Upon Another Time, led by Student Minister Dana N. Moore
The call to justice, equity, and compassion in human relationships requires that we address systemic implications and re-imagine our future communities to work toward a common goal. What hope does our storied past glean for the future? Will we see these changes in our lifetime(s)?
Creatively Maladjusted, led by Rev. Israel Buffardi
The ability to connect with others and understand their truths often lies at the heart of what calls us to become the change we wish to see in the world. Together we explore the power that communal storytelling and visioning has to transform movements for justice and equity through both empathy and compassion.
What Are We Not Seeing? led by Guest Speaker Cassandra Montenegro
This Sunday, we consider the life and legacy of Elizabeth Cabot Cary Agassiz, Cambridge Unitarian and founder of the women’s educational institution that would later become Radcliffe College. She was the wife and close collaborator of Louis Agassiz, biologist and geologist whose approach to teaching revolutionized the study of natural history and whose scholarship simultaneously advanced theories in support of scientific racism. How do we practice a posture of spiritual humility when it comes to ancestral reconciliation? And, what is it in our own work, that we are not seeing?
Soulful Sundown, led by Rev. David Carl Olson
Soulful Sundown offers poetry and reflection by Rev. David Carl Olson and live music from The Cosmic Orchestra, onsite AND online. Special guest artist Leslie Mendelson will perform at an ONSITE-ONLY coffee house/concert afterward. All are welcome; never a charge!
Where music resides at the heart of religious experience.
February will mark the return of a regularly occurring simple supper prior to Soulful Sundown. A voluntary donation of $10 covers soup, salad, artisanal bread, cookies, and beverages. All are welcome to supper at 6:30 PM before Soulful Sundown.
Justice and Equity, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore
Remember when you were a young person (or maybe you are still a young person) and you protested that it was not fair unless everyone was treated the same? We are usually taught to think that treating everyone the “same” is what is just but what about equity—the idea that it may be just to consider that different people have different needs in order to achieve fairness and justice?
Veatch Sunday Worship Service: Radical Connection: Building a Multiracial Democracy led by Deborah Scott, CEO of Georgia STAND-UP
Veatch Sunday provides an opportunity for all to hear directly from Veatch grantees. Join the Veatch Board of Governors to hear Georgia STAND-UP founder and CEO, Deborah Scott, deliver the sermon Love Lives Here. Veatch Annual Meeting will follow at 1:00pm. Deborah Scott and Rosemary Rivera, Executive Director of Veatch grantee Public Policy and Education Fund, will discuss Building a Multiracial Democracy. For more information visit the Veatch Blog | Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Shelter Rock (uucsr.org).
Love Unites, led by Rev. Israel Buffardi and Members of the Denominational Affairs Committee and Delegates to GA 2023
This year, Unitarian Universalists will gather for a virtual General Assembly to celebrate the profound impact of the love that transcends boundaries and builds connections in our communities. Members of our Denominational Affairs Committee will share their experiences of the impact of attending General Assembly along with thousands of other UUs committed to putting love at the center of all we do.
Marching, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore
There is an old story: a Universalist was asked where they stand and answered, “We don’t stand, we move.” Moving and marching is a way of gathering energy to move a cause forward. Bayard Rustin—Black, gay, pacifist, Quaker—was an organizer of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom in 1963. Rustin worked with Martin Luther King, Jr. and deepened King’s commitment to non-violence as practiced by Mohandas Gandhi. As King was at the center of the greatest civil rights march of its time, Gandhi led the Great March to the Sea in 1930. We’ll reflect on the stories of these movements and marches.
Soulful Sundown, led by Student Minister Dana N. Moore
Soulful Sundown offers spoken word by Student Minister Dana N. Moore and live music from The Cosmic Orchestra, onsite AND online. Special guest artist Brian Mitchell at ONSITE-ONLY coffee house/concert afterward. All are welcome; never a charge!
Liberating Love, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore
Love is a central value in Unitarian Universalism. Love is a powerful force. Love can be defined in many ways in our faith community. Let us consider “Love” as a force for justice and liberation.
Modern Day Mystics, led by Student Minister Dana N. Moore
Are YOU a UU Mystic? Student Minister, Dana N. Moore explores how Unitarian Universalists engage our sources and "direct experience of that transcending mystery and wonder, affirmed in all cultures, which moves us to a renewal of the spirit and an openness to the forces which create and uphold life."
Light in the Darkness, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore, Rev. David Carl Olson, Rev. Israel Buffardi, Student Minister Dana N. Moore
Each winter, may we remember that, in our lives, the season of rebirth always promised but not guaranteed. It is by our efforts to bring light to the lives of others in dark times that we bring about possibilities for renewal. We can make ourselves a light in the darkness for those in need. We can be vehicles of hope. This service will feature the UUCSR Choir, soloists and instrumentalists. As is tradition, the Service will conclude with candlelighting while singing “Silent Night” in the Worship Room.
Stories of Love and Light, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore, Rev. David Carl Olson, Rev. Israel Buffardi, Student Minister Dana N. Moore
Our Family Sunday Worship Service will center stories of love center light in this holiday season. This service will include candlelighting.
To Give Shelter, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore, Rev. David Carl Olson, Rev. Israel Buffardi, and Dana N. Moore, Student Minister
Human beings need both shelter from the elements and shelter from harm. In the stories of the winter holidays, we can find guideposts for how we can be a sheltering community–here at Shelter Rock. UUCSR first-graders will present a Nativity Story.
The Mystery of Music, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore
As we prepare for the afternoon’s annual Messiah Sing, we will gather surrounded by the waiting instruments and musician’s chairs–and consider the mysterious spiritual gifts of music.
Soulful Sundown, led by Rev. David Carl Olson
Soulful Sundown offers spoken word by Rev. David Carl Olson and live music from The Cosmic Orchestra, onsite AND online. Special guest artists The Cosmic Orchestra at ONSITE-ONLY coffee house/concert afterward. All are welcome; never a charge!
Another World: A Journey of Connection and Justice, led by Guest Minister Rev. Mary Katherine Morn, UU Service Committee President
In the face of violence and grief, these days challenge us to imagine another world and commit to whatever next action we may take toward it. In this service, we will consider what we need to resist cynicism and refuse complacency.
Oh, We Give Thanks!, led by Dana N. Moore, Student Minister
Student Minister Dana N. Moore asks: In a world with so many needs and demands, how do we maintain hope and vigor for the work that must be done? Together we will explore gratitude and self-care practices that sustain social justice movements and the people who champion them!
Gobble, Gobble, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore, Rev. David Carl Olson, Rev. Israel Buffardi, Dana N. Moore, Student Minister
In our Annual Family Thanksgiving Worship Service we’ll consider two ways to think about “Gobble, Gobble”: Yes, turkey sounds–as we continue to collect donations to make sure that those in need can have a full Thanksgiving Meal. But also, in what ways are we a “Gobble, Gobble” culture–taking much without thinking of how little may be left for others.
Please remember to bring bread from your culture or memory to share and be prepared to share the story of this bread with the congregation. Guest At Your Table Boxes will be distributed for return on December 24.
Stepping Into Our Power For Social Justice, led by Pavel (Pablo) DeJesús, Executive Director of Unitarian Universalists for Social Justice
We are living through an important moment in American history, perhaps global history. In the foreground, we have the chaos of current events. In the background, we have pervasive challenges to our civic institutions and mounting threats to the health of our democracy–at least the inclusive impulses of our American project in democracy.
Unitarian Universalists must understand that despite these circumstances, we can share an important voice in public policy and legislative matters. We have power we can grow, curate, and leverage. Now is the time to invest in fusion politics and coalition. We have the opportunity to advance real solutions and participate in the movement that could reform the current paradigm. Now is the time to chase that dream of the beloved community. Let us step into our power.
Soulful Sundown, led by Rev. Israel Buffardi
Soulful Sundown offers spoken word by Rev. Israel Buffardi and live music from The Cosmic Orchestra, onsite AND online. Special guest artists Duke Levine & Kevin Barry at ONSITE-ONLY coffee house/concert afterward. All are welcome; never a charge!
How can we come to see that we have enough, we are enough, and there is enough for all of us? Together we reflect on what it means to cultivate generosity that flows from a place of deep gratitude for all the beauty and blessings that we already have in our lives. Let us draw strength to meet the challenges of the world by seeing that enough is a feast.
Sunday Worship Service: Generosity, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore
As the Unitarian Universalist Association considers changes to its Principles and Purposes Statement, one of the qualities of our UU Covenant that is being put forward as central is “Generosity.” What does generosity mean in this community? In what ways are we generous with and to others–and with and among ourselves?
All Aunt Hagar’s Children, led by Dana Moore, Student Minister
Join Student Minister Dana N. Moore on a journey through history to discover biological and spiritual lineages that keep us connected in surprising ways! Inspired by the Book of Genesis, theologian Delores Williams’ book, Sisters in the Wilderness, and Dana’s own Conservative Christian upbringing, we will explore our shared heritage from a Unitarian Universalist perspective, and with an hermeneutic of suspicion. Tales of the supernatural and encounters with the divine parallel this spooky Halloween season and weave together UU Principles 2, 4 ,6 and 8.
To Put Your Name in the Book, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore
Membership at a Unitarian Universalist congregation includes the ritual of signing the Membership Book. The Membership Book at UUCSR begins with the signatures of the four founding families. Each person who has “Signed the Book” joins the company of those who signed before them and becomes part of the legacy of the congregation. How did it feel for you to become part of the heritage of this congregation? How do we invite others to put their names in the book?
The Larger Kindred, led by Rev. David Carl Olson
Eight hundred years ago, Francis of Assisi organized the first nativity scene with live animals as part of a celebration of Christmas. Since then, and in honor of his birthday, a day in October is set aside in many religious communities to bless animals that are among and around human communities.
We will bless our companion animals in an outdoor Service on the Patio (right outside the Main Lobby doors).
We invite participation of pets who are leashed or in carriers for a blessing in word, music, and gestures. The children may even want to bring in their favorite teddy bear, ALL are welcomed! There will also be an altar for animals remembered and allow a place for photographs, collars, chew toys and other mementos. Although water will be available to both human and animal alike, please remember to bring water bowls for your furry friends. Shelter Rock suggests bringing a blanket or sheet for the comfort of the beloved four-legged friends as well.
Following Service there will be recognition of Rev. Olson’s 25th anniversary of ordination.
Soulful Sundown, led by Rev. David Carl Olson
Soulful Sundown offers spoken word from Rev. David Carl Olson and live music from The Cosmic Orchestra, onsite AND online. Special guest artist Lisa Bastoni at ONSITE ONLY coffee house concert afterward. All are welcome; never a charge!
Going Off Script, led by Rev. Israel Buffardi
We are here because of those who came before, and yet we are also tasked with imagining a future for those future generations we may never even meet. Our place between the past and present can both lift us up and weigh us down at the same time. Come explore how we might embrace these complexities and imagine our future.
On Caring and Covenant, led by Rev. David Carl Olson
The long heritage of Unitarian Universalism begins with a strong embrace of congregationalism. Since the start, we have imagined that it is congregations that have ultimate authority, and that congregations are held together as spiritual centers because people agree with one another about how they will be with each other and the world. The agreements are made public by the covenants that members agree to.
At the same time, congregationalism carries the strong notion that caring is not given by a special class of priests, for example, but is the joyful responsibility of the members of the congregation themselves. Rev. Olson reflects on the ways that we support each other as individuals and as a congregation.
Sunday Service: To Forgive Ourselves, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore
In this season of the Jewish High Holy Days, we reflect on the Day of Atonement, Yom Kippur, a time to seek forgiveness for wrongs done. In many religious traditions, the divine asks for reflection and repentance and gives forgiveness. This model of forgiveness by the divine is a model for human actions. As we seek to forgive others, can we also remember to forgive ourselves?
After Service, there will be cake to celebrate Rev. Dr. Fenimore’s tenth anniversary of ministry at Shelter Rock.
Welcome Home Sunday, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore, Rev. David Carl Olson and Rev. Israel Buffardi
Sunday Worship Service: Welcome Home Sunday, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore, Rev. David Carl Olson and Rev. Israel Buffardi on September 17, 2023. In our annual ritual or Homecoming, we gather together after our summer adventures. We will reflect on what has been gained by taking a break from some of the routines of school and work. And we will also celebrate how good it feels to come home together again each fall to share our summer stories, renew our connections, and rejoice together.
Welcome Home Picnic follows.
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