A Typical Sunday

Every UU service is written fresh weekly—relevant to today’s world and reflective of a wide range of beliefs.

 

Music for Gathering

Welcome
One of our Worship Associates (UUFES members who help plan and create worship) and the minister welcome newcomers and long-timers. They say a few words about what Unitarian Universalism is and introduce the theme of the service.

Peace Chalice Lighting
Every service begins with the lighting of the chalice, the symbol of Unitarian Universalism.

Centering
A time of contemplative music and quieting.

Call to Worship
A poem, invocation or unison reading that welcomes, gathers and connects those present.

Opening Hymn
Our hymns are a mix of old Protestant chestnuts with updated lyrics, new pieces written for this faith, and world music.

Shared Affirmation
Many UU churches recite this covenant written by Unitarian Rev. James V. Blake in the 1880s. We sign the words as we speak them.

Love is the spirit of this Fellowship,
the quest for truth is its sacrament,
and service is its prayer.
This is our great covenant:
to dwell together in peace, to seek truth in love,
and to help one another.

A Time for All Ages
A story, with appeal across the generations, that ties into the service theme.

Singing the Children to Class
UUFES offers a weekly program of religious and spiritual exploration for children and youth. On special celebration Sundays, all ages participate throughout the whole service.

Go now in peace, go now in peace,
May the spirit of love surround you
Everywhere, everywhere you may go.

 

Joys and Sorrows
People are invited to briefly share a joy or sorrow. This time begins with a song:

Draw the circle wide, draw it wider still.
Let this be our song, no one stands alone.
Standing side by side, draw the circle wide.

– Gordon Light


Meditation in Song, Words and Silence
A quieting hymn, often the beloved UU anthem,“Spirit of Life,” is the gateway into a time of meditation/prayer, which ends in a long silence.

Spirit of Life, come unto me.
Sing in my heart all the stirrings of compassion.
Blow in the wind, rise in the sea;
Move in the hand, giving life the shape of justice.
Roots hold me close, wings set me free;
Spirit of Life, come to me, come to me.

Reading
Words that deepen the service theme: a poem or essay; a reading from one of the world religions; a book excerpt.

Hymn
This congregation enjoys singing!

Sermon
A message from the minister—about fifteen minutes.

Free Will Offering
A chance for people to support the life of the fellowship. Once a month, the offering is given away to a chosen cause.

Anthem
Performed by our new choir or our talented Music Director.

Closing Hymn
“How can we keep from singing….”

Extinguishing the Chalice

We recite these words in unison.
We extinguish this flame,
but not the light of truth,
the warmth of community
the fire of commitment.
These we carry in our hearts.

Benediction
Parting words…until next week.

Postlude
Worship begins and ends with music.

All are invited for conversation and refreshments after the service.