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 Ward’s sermons are available for purchase. Monthly publications can be purchased at $10 per hard copy. Electronic copies are currently not available. Please send your payment to the office, or purchase online using the "MAKE A DONATION" link in the upper right-hand corner of this page. E-mail Diego Andres at oos@uusm.org and note which month you would like to purchase. Publications are generated as ordered. 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.

[*Please Note: if you do not see an audio speaker icon below each of the individual sermons on this page, click the small lock-shaped icon next to the page's URL in your address bar, and in the drop-down menu that pops up, make sure "Flash" is set to "Allow." Then re-load the page, and you should be able to see the audio players. Sorry for any inconvenience - we are working to fix this issue.]

December 23, 2018
The Star of Bethlehem
Monthly Theme: Mystery
Kathleen Hogue
 Why do we celebrate Christmas? As Unitarian Universalists, most of us believe that Jesus was a human being, that he was an inspired spiritual teacher and compelling social revolutionary.  For some of us, we do celebrate the story of the only Son of God come to save the world, and that belief is welcome here today. For others, the culture in which we live tells this story, over and over, and we gather to experience it once again. But it is not only the Christian religion that needs to tell this story, over and over. As a Unitarian Universalist people of faith, we, too, need to tell this story over and over because, like all great religious myths that have been told through the ages, this night and this story hold essential spiritual truths. Come and experience the story once again, with all the characters you know and love including our congregation’s beloved Friendly Beasts! Join us for a Christmas Nativity pageant in word and song with the timeless story of Mary and Joseph, the kings, and the shepherds.
December 16, 2018 - 5:30pm
Winter Solstice Celebration
Rima Snyder
[PLEASE NOTE:  This service will be held in Forbes Hall...NOT the Sanctuary]
 
This year we commemorate the solstice by learning about the Iranian festival of Yalda, the longest night. Join us to celebrate the beginning of winter and the emergence of the light with music, poems, and shared community.
 
Note: No audio recording is available for this service.
December 16, 2018
A Star is Born
Monthly Theme: Mystery
Rev. Greg Ward

Michael Dowd's evolution of history.

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December 9, 2018 - 5:00pm
Heart and Soul: A Contemplative Worship Service @ 5 p.m. - "What Does it Mean to Be a Community of Mystery?"
Monthly Theme: Mystery
Catie Grasso
 
Bring your food a little early and join us for a contemplative worship to give you strength before the holidays.  Service is from 5-5:45, the theme is Mystery.
 
Heart and Soul is a contemplative worship service series that usually occurs on the second Sunday of each month. It is a shorter, more intimate service, with singing, statements, and questions, silence, and sharing. Readings, poems, quotes, and music are drawn from a variety of sources, including the UU Soul Matters Sharing Circle, our hymnals, and popular/folk music.
 
Please note audio is currently unavailable for Heart & Soul services.
December 9, 2018
Confessions of an Apocaloptimist
Monthly Theme: Mystery
Rev. Greg Ward

Urban Dictionary definition of an Apocaloptimist: 'Someone who knows it's all going to shit, but refuses to lose theirs in the process.'  We can all find reasons to panic about the environment, the economy, the rise of corruption and greed or the collapse of human civility.  How can we look at the world earnestly - with its capacity to break our heart - and not lose hope?  Those who can do that - who can stand amidst impossible odds and still be engaged and idealistic - is an apocaloptimist."

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December 2, 2018
Millenials are Ruining...
Monthly Theme: Mystery
Robin Stillwater
Millenials can seem like a seperate species from the older adults in congregations.  How does one even talk to these strange creatures?  More importantly, as Unitarian Universalism ages, how do we welcome in millenials; offering them sanctuary and hope in a too-often toxic and attacking world?

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November 25, 2018
The Rope
Monthly Theme: Memory
Robin Stillwater
Edwin Friedman, one of the pioneers of 'Family Systems' has a book of fables which he uses to talk about the universal predicament we all face: the hero's journey of becoming our own person.  We may scratch our head and ask, 'isn't that what we're doing?'  But if we look at the myriad of ways we unconscious, tenaciously, hold on to the habits we were taught when we're young, we discover we are all composites of patterns we adopted early in our lives to survive and never managed to unlearn.  We talk a great deal about the value of freedom but, don't often realize how captive we are to our own past. 

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November 18, 2018
Back to Junior High
Monthly Theme: Memory
Michael Eselun
Church member, oncology chaplain, and popular guest speaker Michael Eselun will share some deeply personal reflections about junior high school -- a pivotal and often painful time that leaves indelible memories for many of us.  In dialogue with some of those 13-year-old’s perceptions, what might be discovered about inherent worth, dignity and compassion?

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November 17, 2018 - 5:00pm
Heart and Soul: A Contemplative Worship Service @ 5 p.m. - "What Does it Mean to Be a Community of Memory?"
Monthly Theme: Memory
Robin Stillwater
PLEASE NOTE: For the month of November, the Heart and Soul service has been moved to Saturday, November 17th, before the Thanksgiving dinner. 
 
Bring your food a little early and join us for a contemplative worship to give you strength before the holidays.  Service is from 5-5:45, the theme is Memory.
 
Heart and Soul is a contemplative worship service series that usually occurs on the second Sunday of each month. It is a shorter, more intimate service, with singing, statements, and questions, silence, and sharing. Readings, poems, quotes, and music are drawn from a variety of sources, including the UU Soul Matters Sharing Circle, our hymnals, and popular/folk music.
 
Please note audio is currently unavailable for Heart & Soul services.
November 11, 2018
Oi Troy Oi!!! - Vietnam 50 years after the Tet Offensive
Monthly Theme: Memory
Rev. Greg Ward
 
Recently, Rev. Greg toured Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia.  He went, partly to trace the stories of family friends and elementary and high school classmates who've sent loved ones to Vietnam to fight.  He found it hard to hear of all those who lost their lives - or simply were lost.  But the hardest were the stories of those who came back with painful experiences which few people could understand or make room for, partly because their story didn't fit our national narrative.  On his trip, he discovered there are other narratives we don't often hear, but they are worth knowing because they could hold the key for some of the healing we've been lookng for.
 

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