Sermons

This is a full list of sermons presented at UUCCSM since mid-1999. Links to sermon texts are included when made available by their authors. Audio recordings are also available for most sermons presented after September, 2007 by our staff ministers and others directly affiliated with our church (just click the speaker icon next to each sermon where it's available). Audio from guest speakers is posted only when we have their permission to share it.

Rev. Greg’s sermons are now available for purchase in the Front office and on Sundays, in Forbes Hall. The cost to produce this publication is $5. In order to continue publication, we ask for a donation that will cover - or go beyond - production costs. Any revenue raised beyond cost will go to the Ministerial discretionary fund which is used to assist members and friends in their time of need (such as shelter, food, utilities, medical, etc.)

"Leaving Room for Hope: Sermons for Uncertain Times," a book of Minister Emerita Judith Meyer's sermons, is available here.

February 26, 2017
Hearing the Call of Wild Geese
Monthly Theme: Identity
Rev. Anne Hines

How do we learn to accept and forgive ourselves — to give thanks for who we are, rather than lamenting our so-called failings? The topic for this service is grounded in Mary Oliver’s poem, “Wild Geese.”

The Rev. Hines retired last summer (for the second time!) after more than 30 years of parish ministry, all within our Pacific Southwest District. In 2015, Emerson UU Church in Canoga Park bestowed on her the honor of Minister Emerita. She now serves as one of the UUA Pacific Western Region's Ministerial Transition Coaches. She enjoys playing piano and spending time with her family; and since the recent presidential election, is feeling called once again to political activism.

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February 19, 2017
All In The Family
Monthly Theme: Identity
Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur

This is the second in a series of services on transition, leave-taking, and saying goodbye when a ministry comes to an end.

[Note:  audio recording for this service is only partial.]

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February 12, 2017
Blessing of the Animals
Monthly Theme: Identity
Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur and Kathleen Hogue
Join Rev. Rebecca and Kathleen Hogue for this all-ages and all-creatures celebration of the animals in our lives. If your gentle pet is comfortable meeting lots of new people, please bring them along. We are also glad to display photos of pets that would not enjoy the service, and/or memorial pictures of animal companions who have died.

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February 5, 2017 - 5:00pm
Heart and Soul: A Contemplative Worship Service - 5 p.m.
Monthly Theme: Identity
Kikanza Nuri-Robins, Joyce Holmen, and Karen Hsu Patterson
In consultation with our minister, we are continuing the 5 p.m. Heart and Soul services, now led by Kikanza Nuri-Robins, Joyce Holmen, and Karen Hsu Patterson. With singing and instrumental music, statements and questions, silence and sharing, we’ll explore the theme of "What does it mean to be a community of identity?"
February 5, 2017
Where is the "Good" in Goodbye?
Monthly Theme: Identity
Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur
From winter into the spring, Rev. Rebecca will lead a series of worship services on the work of transition, leave-taking, and saying goodbye when a ministry comes to an end. This is first of the series.

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January 29, 2017
Longing and Belonging
Monthly Theme: Prophecy
Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur

[Note: No audio recording is available for this service.]

January 22, 2017 - 3:00pm
"Religious Education is All We Do" - Ceremony of Welcome for our DRE, Kathleen Hogue - 3 p.m.
Rev. Diane Dowgiert
Please Join This Ceremony of Welcome for our Director of Religious Education, Kathleen Hogue.  We will share our hopes and dreams of our shared ministry together. A light dinner reception will follow the service. Please put this date on your calendar, and help us welcome Kathleen into our church family.
 
If our UU congregation is where we come to learn how to live our liberal religious values and principles, then everything we do together is religious education. The great Universalist educator, Angus McLean, believed that how we teach is more important than what we teach. Or as McLean would say, the method is the message. How we are together in community and how we embody our covenants – this is religious education.
 
More on Reverend Diane Dowgiert
Rev. Diane Dowgiert serves as Interim Minister of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Greensboro, North Carolina. She also served as Minister at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Tucson, Arizona for ten years and the First Unitarian Universalist Society of Marietta, Ohio for five years. Diane is a graduate of Starr King School for the Ministry. With a background in social work, Diane has a passion for responding to the needs of the local community, bringing Unitarian Universalist principles and values to social justice issues. Outside of church, she enjoys hiking
and quilting. She has been married to her husband AJ for 42 years. Their family includes two adult sons, one wonderful daughter-in- law, one grand dog, and two adorable cats.
 
[Note: No audio recording is available for this service.]
January 22, 2017
Religious Education for Times Such as These
Monthly Theme: Prophecy
Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur, Rev. Diane Dowgiert and Kathleen Hogue
When times are hard and the future is uncertain, we need a sustaining faith, one that will activate moral strength, courage, and conviction. What in our liberal religious heritage can sustain us through times such as these? What will we teach our children?
 
Rev. Diane Dowgiert serves as Interim Minister of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Greensboro, North Carolina. She also served as Minister at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Tucson, Arizona for ten years, where she worked closely with Kathleen. We're delighted she can join us for worship this morning and to preach a sermon of welcome for Kathleen at her Ceremony of Welcome at 3pm Sunday afternoon.
 
[Note: No audio recording is available for this service.]
 
January 15, 2017
Only Love Can Do That - MLK Sunday
Monthly Theme: Prophecy
Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur
"Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that." - MLK, Strength to Love, 1957.

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January 8, 2017 - 5:00pm
Heart and Soul: A Contemplative Worship Service - 5 p.m.
Monthly Theme: Prophecy
Kikanza Nuri-Robins, Joyce Holmen, and Karen Hsu Patterson
In consultation with our minister, we are continuing the Heart and Soul services, now led by Kikanza Nuri-Robins, Joyce Holmen, and Karen Hsu Patterson. With singing and instrumental music, statements and questions, silence and sharing, we’ll explore the theme of "What does it mean to be a community of Prophecy?"