The Unitarian Universalist Association and President Peter Morales are pleased to present a new video series, “A Religion for Our Time.” These short videos highlight inspiring work in Unitarian Universalist (UU) congregations, including innovative projects relating to worship, religious education, social justice, membership, and fellowship.
Please share the news about this exciting series and watch for new installments to be released every couple of weeks between March 2010 and General Assembly 2010. Join in recognizing and celebrating Unitarian Universalist congregations as they build “A Religion for Our Time.”
Episode Fifteen, "An Auction with Heart!" spotlights the Outreach Auction at Central Unitarian Church (CUC) in Paramus, New Jersey. Inspired by a charity auction at the Unitarian Church of All Souls in New York City, members of CUC are in their tenth year of holding two annual auctions. While the spring auction raises money for the congregation, every dime from the Outreach Auction in the fall goes to local charities.
“Don’t listen to any naysayers, just do it,” says Celia Mendelsohn, co-coordinator of the Outreach Auction. “You will raise funds, even if it’s what you feel might be a modest amount, it’s going to grow over the years. You will not lose money to pledging. You might even see your pledges increase, because it’s a wonderful feeling to belong to a church that does this.”
Watch Episode Fifteen: An Auction with Heart!
Download Episode Fifteen (MP4) (right-click to save the file).
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Episode Twelve, “Worship That Rocks!” explains how First Unitarian in Albuquerque, New Mexico, attracts a diverse group of worshippers through a contemporary service on Sunday afternoons.
As the sanctuary became more and more crowded during the two Sunday services at First Unitarian, members of the congregation had a decision to make. They didn’t need to deliberate over whether to add another service, but about what kind of service to add. A survey pointed them in the direction of contemporary worship, and now the congregation rocks out with the house band each week.
“When I put together a service, I look not only for music that will be energetic,” explains Vance Bass, contemporary worship director at First Unitarian. “I also look for music that encourages a sense of community, both in terms of the lyrics, and also in terms of the encouragement to stand up and clap, sing along, dance in the aisles.”
Watch Episode Twelve: Worship That Rocks!
Download Episode Twelve (MP4) (right-click to save the file).
Share Episode Twelve (YouTube).
Episode Eleven, "Connect, Respect, Protect," features the outdoor education program for 9-12-year-olds at Jefferson Unitarian Church (JUC) in Golden, Colorado.
How do you keep pre-teens interested in going to church? Parents at JUC came up with an idea that puts enthusiastic young people right in the middle of the 7th principle. With the motto of “Connect, Respect, Protect,” the Nature’s Keepers religious education program helps participants engage with and learn about the great outdoors.
According to Nature's Keepers Co-Founder Kristi Reeves, "There’s no curriculum except 'nature happens.'" She adds, "One of the things we learned was that it was not so much about figuring out a big, fancy activity. It was just getting out in the interconnected web of which we are all a part."
Watch Episode Eleven: Connect, Respect, Protect
Download Episode Eleven (MP4) (right-click to save the file).
Share Episode Eleven (YouTube).
Episode Ten, "Multicultural Ministry," shares insights from the fifteen-year journey of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Annapolis (UUCA), Maryland, toward becoming a more diverse congregation.
"So the question is, how do you in your church begin to move toward this multiracial, multicultural paradigm?” asks UUCA Associate Minister Rev. John Crestwell. "And it's simple. It has to become a conscious, deliberate, and determined effort of the congregation. You've got to look at every aspect of your ministry and make every aspect of that ministry speak to the reality that you seek."
Watch Episode Ten: Multicultural Ministry
Download Episode Ten (right-click to save the MP4)
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Episode Nine, "Deepening Faith through Service," shows how the social justice program at the Neighborhood Unitarian Universalist Church in Pasadena, California, engages the congregation in a range of projects and facilitates participants' spiritual growth.
As Associate Minister Rev. Hannah Petrie observes, "Some of our most spiritual moments–-where we're really connected with the divine–-happen when we're in service to others and service of a more just and peaceful world."
Watch Episode Nine: Deepening Faith through Service
Download Episode Nine (right-click to save the MP4)
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For more information contact pw_specialist @ uua.org.
This work is made possible by the generosity of individual donors and congregations.
Please consider making a donation today.
Last updated on Tuesday, September 16, 2014.
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