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A voice of progressive religious tradition since 1843
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Sunday, December 23, 10:30 A.M.
The Story of Multiple Stories
Rev. Michael Brown
We are story telling creatures. Our ancestors dressed up in costumes and acted out their ancient myths. At this time of the year we often do the same thing. Why are we humans so charmed and enchanted by certain stories? Why are stories a deep dimension of our human psyche?

Sunday, December 2, 10:30 A.M.
And May All Your Holidays Be Green
Rev. Michael Brown
As we move into the sacred time of year when we celebrate the legends of Solstice, Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwaanza, and the New Year, let us ponder the challenges of living on planet Earth. What will the holidays look like in 25 years? Will there be tidings of comfort and joy? What can we do to help that happen?

Sunday, November 25, 10:30 A.M.
Who Is Human and How Can You Tell?
Rev. Lynnda White
How can we celebrate the quest for justice, equality, and human rights without determining what we mean by human and deciding if some people are more human than others or are more entitled to more rights than others? Apparently the answers aren't as simple as we think they are.

Sunday, November 18, 10:30 A.M.
What it Means to Work Together as Human Beings Toward Cultural, Social, and Environmental Equity
Johnnie A.
Our guest speaker is an internationally-known Native American environmental activist who is continuing the conversation and discovery process around what it means to be a Human Being and how to work together for Cultural, Social and Environmental Equity. His actual topic will arise as the spirit moves him. Come and engage in this prophetic witness.

Sunday, November 11, 10:30 A.M.
Report from the World
Rev. Michael Brown
Today, twenty-three of our members will have just returned from the Parliament of the World’s Religions in Toronto. What are the religious and non-religious leaders of the world saying about our planet’s future? What are the messages of concern and of hope? And how do we as UUs fit into the picture? What can we do? Come and hear what we found out.

Sunday, November 4, 10:30 A.M.
I Hear You
Rev. Jackie Clement
More and more I hear the question of how we can talk to others who do not share our points of view, people with whom we have serious disagreements. This morning I want to explore what one wisdom story might tell us about how to approach those difficult conversations in a way that might bring more understanding, justice and compassion into the world.

Sunday, October 21, 10:30 A.M.
Autumn, Melancholy & Depths
Dr. Robert (Bob) Fuller Dr. Fuller, Professor of Religious Studies
at Bradley University, will be today’s guest speaker. Dr. Fuller is one of this congregation’s favorite presenters. We welcome him back to the pulpit for another opportunity to enjoy his wit and wisdom.

Sunday, October 14, 10:30 A.M.
A Description of Your Next Minister
Rev. Michael Brown
New religious leadership in this church is an exciting and creative opportunity. I think I may know certain characteristics about your new interim minister, even though I have no idea who it may be or even who the candidates are. I will share some of my ideas with you today.

Sunday, September 30, 10:30 A.M.
Where Do We Go from Here, Baby Boomers and Millennials
Rev. Lynnda White
We live in a time when life is both more grand and more ferocious. At one time, our children were expected to be more prosperous than their parents’ generation. Baby boomers are blamed for most of the things that are not going right in the world. Each generation has its downfalls and its victories. Can’t we all just get along?

Sunday, September 23, 10:30 A.M.
Everyone Has a Birthday – The Power of Inclusion
Rev. Michael Brown
How can we live out our mission to love inclusively? Is there anyone we should exclude? Today we will celebrate an intergenerational birthday party after church. We will celebrate everyone’s birthday! Be sure to be there for your own party. We will also have a (brief!) congregational meeting right after the service. Hopefully it will only take a few minutes. See you at the party.

Sunday, September 16, 10:30 A.M.
Start with Experience
Rev. Michael Brown
In the world of religion, we often talk about what people believe. Do we believe in God or angels or an afterlife? Often this discussion gets argumentative pretty quickly. What if we started with experiences instead? What if we look at religions as beginning with experiences rather than beliefs? Let’s explore whether that path leads to some new insights.

Sunday, September 9, 10:30 A.M.
Drop by Drop
Rev. Michael Brown, Rev. Lynnda White, Amy Popp, CRE
Join us today for our annual Water Service as we reconnect for a new church year. You are invited to bring water from any experience that was meaningful to you this summer. We will also have water available that can represent any place or experience you wish. Today we will explore how sometimes change occurs slowly, drop by drop. It may not seem like change is happening, but it is!

Sunday, September 2, 10:30 A.M.
It's Not What You Think: Exploring a Native Message
Rev. Lynnda White
I had the opportunity to reunite with North Dakota Water Protectors in August, and I wondered how their message and methods would be accepted here by we highly-organized, goal-oriented “two-leggeds.” Are we able to live into the concept that “it is how you think, not what you think” and understand the prophetic witness that speaks to so many of our societal woes?

Sunday, August 26, 10:30 A.M.
Embeddedness
Rev. Michael Brown
Embeddedness is the idea that in order to understand the actions of individuals and groups, we need to look at the social contexts in which they exist. In a world where different social groups are often at odds with each other, might it be useful for us to understand better why different individuals and groups act the way they do? Would it give us a better chance to solve some of our deepest problems? The idea is worth exploring.

Sunday, May 13, 10:30 A.M.
Is Every Day Mother’s Day?
Rev. Lynnda White
Mother’s Day is one of those holidays to which some of us look forward, while others are saddened for any number of reasons. Let's explore the mystery, the majesty, and the malaise associated with the day.

Sunday, May 6, 10:30 A.M.
What Is Our Next Move?
Rev. Michael Brown
On the first day of our next 175 years,
where should we be headed? What role should we play? What goals should we reach for? Let’s reflect on where we have come from and where we might be going. What is our mission in this community of opportunities and challenges?

Sunday, April 29, 10:30 A.M.
Circle of the Sun
Guest Speaker: Rev. Kendyl Gibbons
Rev. Gibbons will be in town this weekend for the ordination service for Erin Dajka Holley on Saturday the 28th. Former President of the UU Humanist Association and also of the UU Ministers Association, Kendyl also has the rare distinction of being an internship supervisor for both Erin Dajka Holley and Rev. Michael Brown.

Sunday, April 8, 10:30 A.M.
Recreating the Community
Rev. Michael Brown
Today is Fellowship Sunday. Everyone is invited to a special Fellowship Lunch after the service. Each spring we plan for a new church year and then come together to make our plan become reality. How does this special kind of creativity happen? Our fellow church members will share their insights and we will ponder together the miracle of recreating the church each year for 175 years and moving into the future.

Sunday, April 1, 10:30 A.M.
Celebrate in Joyful Song: Spring and the Rebirth of Hope
Rev. Lynnda White
We have seen so much trouble and upset in the world that we often forget how important celebration is as a healthy, vital part of a balanced life. There is much to celebrate as we move through the festival of Spring and the rebirth of hope. On April 1, we will celebrate through familiar, joyful hymns. Instead of a sermon, there will be some narration as a guide, and the congregation will reply with some of our most beloved hymns

Sunday, March 18, 10:30 A.M.
The Gathering Wave
Rev. Michael Brown
This service is about the gathering wave of women entering politics and other forms of public life. According to all reports the numbers are significant. What does this shift mean for our society? An ally offers some reflections.

Sunday, March 11, 10:30 A.M.
Hope Springs Eternal
Rev. Michael Brown
What is the role of hope in our lives? Is it a kind of necessary illusion or maybe something we eventually outgrow? Springtime is often experienced as a time of hope. In these times of stress and division, what can we hope for?

Sunday, March 4, 10:30 A.M.
...And a Little Child Shall Lead Them
Rev. Lynnda White
In this topsy-turvy world where some people are having trouble telling right from wrong, truth from fiction, it seems that children are coming to the front lines battling for justice. This time it was a tragedy in Florida that brought them to the forefront, but there have been other moments in history when children have been the wise ones and led their elders with their wisdom, courage, and perseverance. What can we learn from our children?

Sunday, February 25, 10:30 A.M.
W.E.B. DuBois and Unitarian Universalism
Rev. Michael Brown
W.E.B. DuBois was a prominent sociologist, activist, and writer who was born just after the civil war ended and who died one year before the Voting Rights Act was signed. Among his most well-known books is "The Souls of Black Folk." He was one of the founders of the NAACP. W.E.B. DuBois was a guest speaker at our church's Sunday Evening Lecture Series on February 16, 1936. How did his cutting-edge thinking compare with Unitarian Universalism at that time and even now?

Sunday, February 18, 10:30 A.M.
Will Democracy Survive in America?
Rev. Michael Brown
A number of contemporary thinkers believe that the United States is on a slippery slope toward losing our standing as democratic form of government. Could this possibly be true? Our UU Principles and Purposes affirm democratic process as one of our most important principles. What could we do that would strenghten democracy in our country and save it from possible collapse?

Sunday, February 11, 10:30 A.M.
Community as Transcendence
Rev. Michael Brown
What is the effect of being connected in community? Does it change our life in any important ways? What happens when we commit ourselves to being an inclusive community? These are questions that may help us understand the struggles going on in our world.

Sunday, February 4, 10:30 A.M.
Good versus Evil: How Do We Take Sides
Rev. Lynnda White
That onerous old hymn Once to Every Soul* and Nation tells us that a moment will come when we must each decide our fate, that we must take the side of good or evil. Perhaps it isn’t as easy as we think to make those determinations. How does Unitarian Universalism help us decide?

Sunday, January 21, 10:30 A.M.
Legacy Sunday
Rev. Michael Brown
As part of our 175th anniversary celebration, today we will honor those who have been members of our church for 35 years or more. They are quite a group. Please come and meet these pillars of the church and appreciate their contriutions to our community. I hope those of you who have joined more recently will find this an opportunity to know your church home with more depth.

Sunday, January 14, 10:30 A.M.
Beloved Conversations
Rev. Kierstin Homblette Allen
Rev. Rhonda Brown (from Florida) will also participate in this service. They are both facilitators for the Beloved Conversations retreat Friday and Saturday prior to the service. Rev. Homblette wrote, “When I have preached before on a Sunday following a BC retreat, I’ve talked generally about the work of racial justice and against white supremacy and how our religious communities are suited to do that work together.” We look forward to having them as part of our worship.

Sunday, January 7, 10:30 A.M.
A Reason to Hope
Rev. Lynnda White
We have come out of a year that has held more than its share of difficulties. We dream of change in ourselves and in the wider community. What makes us hopeful that we will embrace a new year with renewed energy and a reason to hope?

Sunday, December 31, 10:30 A.M.
The Gift of a Year
Rev. Michael Brown
What shall we do with the gift of a year, the most precious of holiday gifts? We may have personal goals that call to us, perhaps things that we have wanted to do for many years. At the same time trends in our broader world also challenge us to be healers of unhealthy patterns that seem to be all around us. What shall we do with this year? What is the best use of our time?

Sunday, December 3, 10:30 A.M.
Creativity as a Source of Meaning
Rev. Michael Brown
Where does creativity come from and what role does it play in our search for meaning? In a season full of elves, angels, guiding stars, magic candle oil and a flying saint who gives gifts to children we decorate our houses inside and out. What is all this creative display about and why do we do it every year? What does it mean to us?

2017 sermons

2016 and earlier sermons