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.

November 27, 2016
Your Happy Place
Monthly Theme: Story
Kathleen Hogue
Have you ever been told, Don't worry, be happy"? How can one be happy in times of stress, pain or turmoil? Who defines happiness? Come find out the answers to these questions and more. Join us in music, story, and ritual as Kathleen Hogue-DRE shares her "Six Keys of Happiness."

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November 20, 2016
The Real Challenge of Gratitude
Monthly Theme: Story
Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur and Kathleen Hogue
Activist and author Barbara Ehrenreich reminds us that gratitude isn't only a personal feeling, it's also a call to value the lives of real people, many of whom are unseen and underpaid, who do the work that supports our lives. Is solidarity the real challenge of gratitude? 
 
[Please Note:  No audio recording is available for this service.]
 
November 13, 2016 - 5:00pm
Heart and Soul: A Contemplative Worship Service
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 these themes:
 
November 13 — A Community of Story
December 11 — A Community of Presence
November 13, 2016
What Just Happened?
Monthly Theme: Story
Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur
Rev. Rebecca will offer post-election reflections and we will celebrate all those who have joined our church as members since the spring with a ceremony of affirmation and welcome.
 
[Note: no audio recording is available for this service.]
November 6, 2016 - 6:00pm
Remembrance Vespers
Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
At this contemplative evening service, we will remember those dear to us who have died in the past year—with music interspersed with moments of silence and candle lighting. For inclusion of your loved one’s name, please email Music Director Dr. Zanaida Robles at music@uusm.org by noon on Wednesday, November 2.
 
November 6, 2016 - 11:00am
The Larger Circle
Monthly Theme: Story
Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur
YRUU Group, chalice lighters
Len Harris, special guest
 
As our 2017 Pledge Campaign takes off, we'll explore generosity as a spiritual practice deeply grounded in our UU values. Our YRUU Youth Group will light the chalice and our service will include a special presentation with church member Len Harris on "Generosity for The Children of the World," in which Len will share some of the lessons he's learned about love and generosity in his 93 years on this earth. 
 
[NOTE:  No audio recording is available for this service.]
 

 

October 30, 2016 - 12:00pm
Dedication Service in Garden of Eternity
Monthly Theme: Healing
Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur
All are invited to share in a special dedication service in the Garden of Eternity immediately following the 11 am service, at which we will dedicate all memorial bricks that have been installed since November 2015. Rev. Rebecca will lead a brief service of memory and gratitude.
 
October 30, 2016
Day of the Dead
Monthly Theme: Healing
Rev. Rebecca Benefiel Bijur, Kathleen Hogue and Dr. Zanaida Robles
Inspired by Mexican, indigenous, and homegrown traditions surrounding Day of the Dead/Dia de los Muertos, our services will include building an ofrenda and blessing the memories of those we love who have passed away.
 
Please bring a framed photo of a loved one who has died to add to our ofrenda memorial altar on Sunday, October 30. You may drop off pictures at the church during office hours or on Sunday before the services. If you would like your photo returned, please label the back with your name and contact information.
 
[NOTE:  No audio recording is available for this service.]
 
October 23, 2016
Bodies, Blessings and Bucket Lists
Monthly Theme: Healing
Rev. Bill Schulz
Join us for a special Sunday in which we celebrate the 90th Birthday of our Minister Emeritus, Rev. Ernie Pipes, with distinguished guest Rev. Bill Schulz. Bill gave the inaugural Ernest D Pipes Lecture in 1991 and joins us now 25 years later with more wisdom to share both on Sunday morning and as he delivers the Pipes Lecture at 3pm on 10/23. Rev. Judith Meyer will also join us on Sunday morning via a recorded video tribute to Ernie.
 
Bill Schulz, recently retired from full-time ministry and from the presidency of the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, will reflect on the how each stage of our life journeys require of us different religious disciplines.  Bill is a senior fellow in human rights at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard and an affiliated minister at Meadville Lombard Theological School in Chicago.

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October 16, 2016
Perfect Strangers
Monthly Theme: Healing
Michael Esalun
Church member and UCLA Oncology Chaplain Michael Eselun will explore our relationship to strangers. We are often told from a young age, “Don’t talk to strangers,” only to find that sometimes such encounters might be “perfect.”
 
Michael Eselun, a certified chaplain, serves as the chaplain for the Simms-Mann/UCLA Center for Integrative Oncology.   He is also a co-founder and chair of a non- profit, volunteer anti-homophobia speakers bureau called GLIDE, Gays and Lesbians Initiating Dialogue for Equality. Over the last 20-plus years, Michael and his fellow speakers have spoken to an audience of over 200,000 students, teachers, and other various groups and agencies in the LA area about homophobia.  He has a TED talk available on-line via You Tube, called “It’s Magic” and you can find out more about him at www.michaeleselun.com.

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