Sermons

I Will Not Let You Go Until You Bless Me

by Rev. Ashley Horan

Our UU theology pushes back against the belief in an interventionist God who makes us suffer to make us stronger. How, then, are we to understand the problems, trials, and misfortunes in our lives that keep cropping up, again and again? Can there be blessing in pain and struggle?

Remember Who You Are

by Rev. Janne Eller-Isaacs In our demanding, busy lives it is difficult to remember to notice the miraculous that surrounds us and the holiness that is everywhere. It is often most challenging to remember that the same sacred spark also exists within us. Rev. Janne and Rev. Kathleen will explore the spiritual implications when we…

Creating Our Final Days

by Rev. Karon Sandberg

National Health Care Decisions Day is April 16 and in honor of that I want to lift up the importance of creating our Health Care Power of Attorney Document. It is so important that our loved ones know our wishes and sadly Americans are the only people in the world who think dying is optional. Why is this? We will explore issues that get in our way when thinking about death. Come join us as we explore how you can create you own wishes for your end of life care with dignity, grace, creativity and love.

What the Seed Needs: An Earth Day Revels Service

Message by Rev. Kathleen Rolenz

This multigenerational service will celebrate Earth Day in grand “revels” style – with storytelling, special music, and playing in the dirt! We’ll also hear from the newly formed Green Sanctuary Committee, who will be asking the congregation at the Annual Meeting if they will support the Fellowship’s application to be a Green Sanctuary Fellowship. Much singing, laughter and interactive activity is expected!

Making It Up

by Rev. Dr. Wayne B. Arnason

The most creative thing that we are engaged with every day is the improvisation of the life we live. We all have to make this up as we go along. Often we find out what we really know when we are forced to say it. Inevitably we make mistakes, and we have to “make up” for them too – but we can’t let the risk of failure stop us from the creativity that is our birthright.

A Salute to the Sun

by Rev. Rob Eller-Isaacs Unitarian Universalist children of my generation were taught that it was the Pharaoh Akhenaten who first  “unified the Godhead,” by insisting that everyone worship Amun Ra, the sun god. By doing so he became, in effect, the founder of Unitarianism. Farfetched, perhaps, but it makes for a fascinating narrative for a…

An Infinite Expectation of the Dawn

By Rev. Karen Hering

Easter’s celebration of resurrected hope and new life invites us all to consider how hope rises in the midst of loss and despair. “We must learn to reawaken and keep ourselves awake,” wrote Thoreau, “not by mechanical aids but by an infinite expectation of the dawn.” What habits, spiritual practices and bonds of community will nurture our “infinite expectation of the dawn”? How do we keep our hearts awakened to the dawning of the morning star? Wear your Easter hat or bonnet to continue the tradition started last year.

Rev. Karen Hering serves as consulting literary minister at Unity Church-Unitarian in St. Paul, Minnesota. She is author of Writing to Wake the Soul: Opening the Sacred Conversation Within and leads guided writing sessions and retreats in congregations and other community settings in the Midwest and beyond. She grew up in Appleton and is a graduate of Appleton East. www.karenhering.com

It Is What It Is

by Rev. Dr. Wayne Arnason

There’s a politician I know who uses this line a lot, especially when he’s advocating an unpopular program, like a new tax increase. Most of us would prefer to live our lives unencumbered by limitations imposed by government, money, or time. Political conservatives call that “freedom.” This week let’s explore how “liberation” is different from “freedom” when it consists of accepting the limits of things as they are.

A Generous Universe?

Rev. Don Southworth

Is the universe a place of generosity or scarcity? How about our own lives? As we celebrate the blast off of the 2016-17 Fellowship stewardship drive we will reflect on generosity, abundance and how we can create a universe and a Fellowship of our dreams.

The Rev. Don Southworth is the founding Executive Director of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association. Prior to this role, he spent ten years in parish ministry in San Francisco, Atlanta and Durham after a twenty-year career in corporate America. He has led workshops on stewardship and congregational growth around the world and returns to the Fox Valley for his fourth visit. He is a California native and it is only because of his fondness and love for the Fellowship that he ventures into the frigid tundra of the north!

The Missing Peace

by Rev. Dr. Wayne Arnason

On the cultural holiday when loving relationships are celebrated, single people can feel left out. Whether you are partnered or single, all of us will ultimately lose those we love the most, so it makes a difference now how we think and feel about what our most intimate loving relationships really mean in our lives. Are they the “missing piece” that completes us, or are we “missing peace” by expecting that won’t can’t be whole within ourselves?