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5/6/07

Speaking Truth To Bierkenstocks: Or, Why I Became PeaceBang

Sermon

“Miss Conduct Speaks: The Beauty of It”
Robin Abrahams, a Cambridge resident and Ph.D. in psychology who writes the “Miss Conduct” column for the Boston Globe, shared the pulpit with our minister.

4/29/07

Breaking And Entering: Reflections on Commandments Against Stealing and Adultery

Sermon

Continuing with our Ten Commandments series, we consider the ways that the admonitions not to steal and not to commit adultery are connected emotionally and socially.

4/8/07

A God of Second Chances

 

Happy Easter! Today we have been invited to consider that the Easter message does not just speak to human relationships one with the other, but to our human relationship with our planet.

4/1/07

The Laughing Christ: Jesus As Trickster & Holy Fool

Sermon

It’s April Fool’s Day and it’s Palm Sunday. Here is a rare opportunity to consider the remarkable fact that there is much foolishness in the Christian story -- not the foolishness of modern minds who think themselves beyond the beauty and intensity of this myth – but the intentionally subversive foolishness, mockery and wildness of its hero, Jesus.

3/25/07

Four Short Words: Thou Shalt Not Kill

Sermon

How to craft a consistent ethic of life? Our own faith tradition expects a few things of us when considering this or any other commandment.

2/25/07

The Integrity of Atheism

Sermon

Because Unitarian Unviversalists make the radical claim that doubt or outright disbelief are acceptable in our religion, it is important that we understand atheism as one valid theological orientation among many.

2/11/07

Where Grief Lives

Homily

Grief is not rational. If it is repressed, it may manifest sideways as rage or sickness or depression. Of all the human emotional experiences, grief is one most deeply feared, because it reminds us that no matter what we do to ensure our security, we are ultimately not in control. Includes Faith Journey by Jake Basso

2/4/07

Honor Thy Mother and Father

Homily

“Ten Commandments Sermon Series, Part III”
The third sermon in our series. This one deals with honoring our parents.

1/21/07

Building the Beloved Community

 

Walter LeFlore, Student Minister
Martin Luther King first coined the term the Beloved Community. The phrase conjures such a wonderful image.

1/14/07

Staying at the Table

Reflection

Honoring the Work of Marjorie Bowens-Wheatley
Today I will share some of the spirit, and the work, of this friend in ministry with you.

1/7/07

I Swear To God, I Don't Have Time To Take An Entire Day Off

Sermon

“Ten Commandments Sermon Series, Part II”
Don’t miss the second sermon in our series. This one deals with taking the Lord’s name in vain, and keeping the Sabbath holy.

12/24/06

Dreaming of Angels, Waking to Life

 

Christmas Eve Homily

12/10/06

The Drama of the Prodigal Children

 

A Chinese philosopher reminded us long, long ago that if there is to be peace in the world, there must be peace in the nations. If there is to be peace in the nations, there must be peace in the cities. If there is to be peace in the cities, there must be peace in the home. And if there is to be peace in the home, there must be peace in the heart.

12/3/06

Joyful and Triumphant in August

 

Advent is a season of anticipation. In this age of instant gratification, what is it that we’re waiting for?

11/12/06

Love Does No Harm

 

Rev. Weinstein talks about how gender stereotypes and expectations play out in the church community. She will use as one of her references the provocatively titled book, Why Men Hate Going To Church by David Murrow.

10/29/06

Honoring Death

 

A Homily by Walter LeFlore to celebrate All Soul's Day.

10/22/06

No Other Gods

 

When a humble Israelite shepherd saw a burning bush some 3,300 years ago and had an experience of the great “I AM,” it was a theophany that was to change history forever. In this first sermon in a series on the Ten Commandments we learn more about Moses as Jewish (and Muslim) prophet, set the historical context for the Commandments, and begin to gain an appreciation for the complex moral system behind the deceptively simple statements.

10/1/06

Sermon
Commentary

I don’t know any pastor who doesn’t constantly hear the refrain, “I’m hurting, but compared to so many other people, I have nothing to complain about.” Suffering and complaining are two different things. This morning we try to understand a little bit better how to honor suffering such as it is, without comparing it to anyone else’s.

9/24/06

Soul Food

 

As Muslim’s enter the holy month of Ramadan, we explore fasting as a spiritual practice, and the power of various spiritual disciplines to shape and strengthen our lives.

9/17/06

Entertaining Angels Unawares: Thoughts on Hospitality

Homily

Do we treat the stranger as a sister or brother, or do we wait for them to prove themselves worthy of our friendship, solidarity and inclusion?

6/11/06

Please Do Not Pray For Each Other

 

A recent study by Highly Qualified Scientific People informs us that praying for others may not only not help them in healing after surgery, it may, in fact, impede their recovery! In her last sermon of the program year, our minister will caution us against praying for each other over the summer. You can’t be too careful these days.

6/4/06

The Hardest Thing to Say

 

FLOWER COMMUNION SUNDAYA celebration of the community ethic that keeps our church alive, a Pentecost reflection on tongues of fire, and a recognition that some really important things are really hard to say.

5/14/06

Mother's Day - Parenting as a Vocation

 

What if parenthood wasn’t a calling, or a choice, but a legal obligation? Why, that would be just fine with some folks. Come, and we’ll consider it together.

5/7/06

Living in the Layers: the Confessions of a Transcendentalist Church Lover - Stuart Twite

 

The ever more prevalent idea that one can be "spiritual" without the entanglements of "Church" is often traced to the New England Transcendentalists who stressed intuition and "Self-Reliance". This week, a lover of these same Transcendentalists will seek to reclaim the centrality of church and suggest that the benefits and responsibilities of Church life have rarely been more important.

4/23/06

The Blessing of the Animals

 

It was such a delight to share our first Blessing of the Animals service today. We had two white mice, two tadpoles, a very chubby hamster, one live cat and one beloved stuffed cat, a fighter fish named Nemo, a very large iguana, a bunny wrapped tenderly in a towel, and a horseshoe representing a new horse. You brought in dogs by the armful, dogs in little argyle sweaters, big retrievers and little snausages. There were more dogs in church this morning than I’ve seen at any other animal blessing service. We’ve gone to the dogs, and it’s great. What fun! Photos.

4/16/06

Easter 2006 - God is a Community

 

The Bible is full of ancient stories about God making miracles happen. Some of them are quiet miracles that happen to one person, and some of them are big Cecil B. DeMille productions like the parting of the Red Sea, where a whole community of people experience the miracle together. The thing is, though, even those little miracles that occur to just one person always – and I mean always– have an impact on a community of people.

4/9/06

Victory is Mine

 

In the words of a popular gospel song, “Victory is mine, victory is mine, victory today is mine/I told old Satan, get thee behind, victory today is mine.” What does victory mean when it leads to the Cross, or, in the case of Sophocles’ character Antigone, to an early death by royal decree? In honor of Palm Sunday we examine personal integrity and the tragic sense of victory.

4/2/06

The Cost of Disenchantment

 

Peter Schaeffer’s play “Equus” features a tormented young man named Alan who literally worships horses, with terrible consequences. His doctor, Dr. Dysart, has the difficult job of “curing” Alan, but at what cost to his soul? We meditate on the question of passion and its relationship to the expectations of sanity.

3/12/06

Inherent Worth and Dignity: The Starting Point

 

Expounding on her sermon delivered to the congregation of the Church Hill Methodist Church on Ash Wednesday, Rev. Weinstein reflects on the Unitarian Universalist first principle as the place to start (not finish) in our quest for spiritual growth and ethical commitment.

3/5/06

Judge Ye!

 

This is one of the big no-no's nowadays among religious liberals: you cannot be judgmental. That's for the other guys. We don't do that. Remember that a religious liberal is one who is open to multiple sources of wisdom, and above all, a religious liberal is someone who engages in interpreting their Scriptures and their tradition, as opposed to saying, "This is what the authorities say on this or that issue, and that's God's Truth."

2/26/06

Ole Green Eyes

 

Spiritual Stumbling Blocks Part II: Jealousy is one of the most damaging secrets we can carry around with us, and is a seroius impediment to spiritual well-being. Come dance with ole green eyes, and learn how (and why) to exorcise jealousy from your life.

2/19/06

Return to Zero: Everybody Plays the Fool

 

This is the first of a three-part series on what I call "Spiritual Stumbling Blocks." Part of the covenant of this church is to "promote spiritual growth and ethical commitment," which is a serious and complicated endeavor, and we're not always clear how to go about it. First of all, people wonder, "what is spiritual growth? What does it mean to be spiritual?" For some people, "spirituality" is a word that fills them with suspicion, as it sounds New-Agey and like something you have to check your brains at the door in order to have.

1/22/06

Making The Rainbow Connection

 

The symbol of the rainbow is as old as Noah in the Bible-a promise of hope and survival after 40 days and nights of storms and floods-and as new as a rainbow flag symbolizing the welcoming of gays and lesbians into a church community. It is Judy Garland singing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow", and Kermit the Frog singing about "The Rainbow Connection". It is Jesse Jackson preaching a political sermon on disparate racial and social groups in American society joining together into a 'rainbow coalition". And yes, it's the ongoing struggle of gays and lesbians to be welcomed into houses of worship, to serve as lay leaders, and also as ministers and priests, and to have their love honored and celebrated in church and society, not only as a union of partners, but also as holy matrimony and marriage. Rainbows are signs of hope, love, peace, joy and connection. Making the rainbow connection is what being and becoming a church is all about.

1/15/06

Un-sainting Martin

 

A special celebration of the inspiring, challenging life of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King.

1/8/06

Out of the Wilderness: Spiritual Lessons on Turning Forty

 

In the Bible, forty is an important number. The flood lasts for forty days and nights. Moses' unruly flock wanders in the wilderness for forty years before God leads them to the Promised Land. Jesus fasts for forty days and forty nights before his temptation in the desert. What's going on with forty? On the eve of her fortieth birthday, our minister muses on the big 4-0.

1/1/06

New Year's Day Service 2006

 

Burning Bowl Service
Come as you are! Come in your pajamas! Come and hear the traditional sermon on the news of the year in religion, and ritually cast away what you no longer want or need from 2005.

12/11/05

Science and Miracles

 

It's the time of year when myth, miracle, and sacred story get a lot of press, and rational minds want to know, "what's going on here?" Albert Einstein once said, "There are two ways to live: as though everything is a miracle, or as though nothing is a miracle." Today we'll muse on this idea, and wade into intelligent design/evolution debate.

10/30/05

All Souls Sunday Sermon - "In Absentia: Relationship With Those Gone Before"

 

All Souls gives us occasion to reflect on our relationships with admired friends whose lives are over, but whose influence on us is still a very active force.

10/16/05

Forgiving God

 

The Jewish High Holy Days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur invite us to reflect on the issues of renewal and forgiveness. Unitarian Universalism has been described as a "hospital for the religiously wounded." In today's world, when the abuse of religious ideas is so egregious and so prevalent, the task of religious healing is central to the health of the individual and the religious community.
107K pdf

10/2/05

Tough Love

 

Tough love has had a pretty bad rap in recent decades. Having just layed to rest one of the greatest practitioners of tough love, (Uncle) Marvin Weinstein, I am looking forward to sharing stories and insights about the kind of love that has a real bite to it.

9/25/05

The Heat of Midnight Tears

 

The element of water, universally associated with life, healing and regeneration, has reasserted itself in our collective consciousness as a force to be reckoned with. Tsunamis, hurricanes, flashfloods and the growing concern about water rights give us reason to reflect on the spiritual and justice issues pertaining to the mighty waters.

9/11/05

There Is Not Time For Despair

 

September 11th is a sobering day to re-gather our community for the commencement of our regular worship services. Still, we gather in thanksgiving and praise, glad for the support of our religious community and for the human quality of resilience, which will be the subject of this morning’s sermon.