Rev. Erin Gingrich

A Possibility for Survival

Service at 9:15 and 11:00 am

Celebrant: Kellie Patterson

This month we ask how we can be a people of possibility, together. Let us apply the insights of Bowen family systems theory to consider what is actually possible to do individually and collectively wherever we find ourselves.

 

Special Music by: UU Singers

Will the Real Jesus Please Rise?

 

Watch the Video (You Tube)

On the verge of Christmas Eve, as Christians around the world celebrate a birth that happened more than 2,000 years ago, we Unitarian Universalists seek to discern the true meaning of that birth. As people of diverse theologies, we respect and celebrate a diversity of religious traditions. And we may rightly ask: “What is there in the life of Jesus of Nazareth that invites respect? Who was this Jesus, really?” Two millennia of history aside, what is there about Jesus to celebrate? Answering this question means looking past the assumptions and conventions of the season to discover the real Jesus. This service is suitable for people age 6 and older and is designed to welcome all our diverse theologies.

Reclaiming Blessings

Watch the Video (YouTube link)

Unitarian Universalists hold sacred the ties that bind and we actively seek to affirm the inherent worth and dignity of every person. Given our humanist faith, we may not think to include prayer or offering blessings in our spiritual toolbox as we do this. Rev. Erin, members of our pastoral team and justice seeking groups will share stories about how powerful it can be to reclaim these tools.

Special music by Risa Vandegrift

Instrument of Peace

Watch the Video (YouTube link)

Envisioning an end to sexual violence involves many things, including the willingness to understand and compassionately address the underlying motivations of those who cause harm. It involves a willingness to see those who have caused harm as whole and worthy of care. As a religious community, let us hold the pain of all with sacred compassion together.

A Tale of Tenacity

9:15 & 11 am

In this service for all ages, we share a tale of tenacity: the story of Esther. This true story is the centerpiece of the Jewish celebration of Purim, which this year begins on February 28. In many ways Esther was a true superhero: a seemingly ordinary person who saved many lives through her persistence and courage. Today we consider how our own narratives intersect with this tale of tenacity.

Hanging On

Watch the Video (YouTube link)

Perseverance carries an exhausting connotation, especially if we think about perseverance as holding our breath as we push through impossible conditions. This month our theme in worship asks us how we are called to be a people of perseverance. What alternative understandings of perseverance might we need to share if we are to be a people who persevere together?

Share the Light

Watch the Video (YouTube link)

Joining us over the weekend of this service is Rev. Janne Eller-Isaacs, our ministerial search transition coach, along with Rev. Jen Crow. After each service, Rev. Janne will hold open meetings to share information about the search process for our new settled senior minister. This purpose intersects beautifully with January’s Soul Matters theme exploring how we are called to be a people of intention. Setting personal intentions is a spiritual act that can shape our living. Setting collective intentions is a spiritual act that can transform a congregation and the wider community. In these services, guest minister, Rev. Jen Crow and Rev. Erin will speak to the power of love and ministry that is unleashed when a congregation re-imagines their shared intention for vision and mission. May we be inspired for the Connections Parties in February, when we will share our individual light to create the vision for our collective future.

Stone Soup

Watch the Video (YouTube link)

The old story of Stone Soup tells of two weary travelers who arrive in a small village and unexpectedly bring a community together under the guise of making a delicious soup from stones.To make this story come to life, we’re encouraging everyone who can to bring pre-cut veggies to add to the pot, as well as non-perishable food to support the children with their food drive. This participatory service will engage young and old alike in this important tale and also offer food to the hungry in our community. Special music by visiting musician Peter Mayer.

Abundance as a Spiritual Asset

Watch the video of the Reflection | Watch the video of the Sermon (YouTube links)

Having a sense of financial abundance is about more than having the ability to buy plenty of things. Or is it? Depending on our income and class background, depending on our family’s relationship to money, or on major events in our generation’s lifetime, we will have different experiences that have shaped how we understand abundance, having enough and our definition of generosity. Reflection by Darin Jensen.

Cherish: A Service of Remembrance

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This service for all ages remembers the loved ones who have passed away. As we honor their memories, and the ways they shaped our lives, we’re also reminded to cherish every moment we have with those we love. Please bring a photo or item of remembrance for any people and/or animals who has passed away that you (or your family) would like to remember during this service.

Dismantling White Supremacy- Teach-in #2

Watch the Video (YouTube link) | Watch Lisa’s Reflection video (YouTube)

Unitarian Universalists are collectively taking action to dismantle white supremacy. On Oct. 22nd, worship services and religious education classes will focus on disrupting white supremacy in our lives and communities. This is our second teach-in; the first took place last spring when our church joined with over 700 UU congregations across the country in examining white supremacy in our lives.

Immigration: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised

Watch the Reflection Video (YouTube link) | Watch the Homily Video (YouTube link)

In September, Rev. Erin Gingrich joined with 8 Iowans and more than 30 faith leaders from across the United States to meet with our Members of Congress in DC. She will share stories and reflect on the American dreams and American nightmares in our current system and its history.