Sermons

Subway Jesus

by Rev. Kaaren Anderson
The Rev. Kaaren Anderson is the Senior Minister of First Unitarian Church in Rochester, NY, a 1000 member church. One of the outstanding preachers in our movement, she was selected to give the main sermon at the UU Association’s General Assembly a couple years ago. Her sermon will share about “The Greater Good,” a remarkable alternative holiday giving program that is children-led and has raised over $400,000 since 2006 to support social justice work.

Song of the Open Road

by Rev. Leah Hart-Landsberg

In the deep of winter (when this service description was written), the promise of spring can symbolize freedom (from too-little daylight, slippery driveways and being stuck inside). And who captures the heady magic of milder weather better than Walt Whitman? Heed the music of his epic poem “Song of the Open Road” as it calls us…

The Limits of Freedom

by Rev. Roger Bertschausen

Freedom is a pillar of our faith. I used to preach it is THE pillar of our faith. I continue to think it’s a pillar, but I also have come to recognize it has limitations, too.

The Future of Liberal Religion

by Rev. Roger Bertschausen

Where is our faith headed? Will it survive the increasing secularism of our culture (yes, even in the Fox Cities)? I’ll share reflections from my sabbatical experience in the highly secularized culture of England.

Surrender as a Spiritual Practice

by Rev. Roger Bertschausen, 3/23/2014

Surrender is not a spiritual practice that Unitarian Universalists are inclined to embrace. Certainly there is a shadow side to it. But is there also some merit in surrender as an occasional spiritual practice?

The Shadow Side of Vulnerability

By Rev. Roger Bertschausen, 3/16/2014

Vulnerability is a popular value in Unitarian Universalism today. This is for good reason: it is a key to the spiritual life. But are there limits to vulnerability? Can it be unhelpful and even destructive?

Something Beautiful From What’s Been Broken

By Rev. Leah Hart-Landsberg, 3/9/2014

What does it mean to live a life of vulnerability, which is March’s learning and worship theme? This is going to be one of those months where some of our services argue in favor of vulnerability and others argue against it. As we begin this exciting conversation, let’s think about what it feels like to be vulnerable. Are some among us more prone to vulnerability? How do we handle our soft and tender edges?

Building Dedication Service

3/2/2014
Greetings: Mr. Tim Hanna, Mayor of Appleton
Ms. Dori Davenport Thexton, Congregational Life Consultant with the Mid America Region of the Unitarian Universalist Association
Rev. Don Southworth, Executive Director of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association

Sermon: “Home: Sanctuary or Basecamp?” by Rev. Peter Morales, President of the Unitarian Universalist Association

Offering for World Relief: Ms. Kathy Flores, Diversity Coordinator of the City of Appleton, and a member of the Fellowship

Act of Dedication: Led by Mr. Eric Riggers, President of the Fellowship’s Governing Board
President: With gratitude to all those who laid the solid foundations of Unitarian Universalism and the courageous band of free-thinkers who opened the doors of this Fellowship in 1955,
All: With gratitude to those who helped create this place by giving so generously of their time, energy, vision and treasure; and with gratitude to those whose labor turned our dreams into the reality of wood and stone, carpet and shingle,
President: And with gratitude to the Spirit of Life that fills us with possibility and abundance,
All: We dedicate this new spiritual home. May this be a place where we welcome everyone, embracing diversity as together we explore the mysteries of the universe and face a shared future.
President: May this be a place where we grow in mind and spirit as together we make meaning of life. May this be a place where we encounter the beauty of humanity and our world.
All: May this be a place where we lead in social justice by reaching out in service and solidarity. We dedicate ourselves to making our own hearts and our greater communities more just and compassionate.
President: May this be a place where generations come together as we minister to one another, sharing joys and sorrows and celebrating together the events and seasons of our lives.
All: May this be a place of memory and hope, where we revel in our past while opening to our present. We dedicate ourselves to making this home a spiritual legacy for future generations.

Song: “Let’s Make the Circle Bigger” written and performed by Be Alford with Erik Leveille

The Evolution of the Fellowship: A Sermon in Five Acts

by Rev. Roger Bertschausen and Rev. Leah Hart-Landsberg, 2/23/2014

“Love Is Big” written and performed by Doug Wheeler

The Fellowship in many ways is like a living organism. Like all life, it has evolved. We’ll use the lens of this month’s theme of evolution to look at the evolution of the Fellowship. How has the Fellowship evolved over the years? What has been the continuity? What might be next?