Here a few of the observances we host every year or whenever the need arises:
At the beginning of each program year in September, we gather in a single service for all ages and share a much-appreciated ritual that honors the diversity of experiences we have enjoyed in the preceding summer months. Everyone who feels they have a story to share brings a small container of water representing an experience they've had during the summer, and after sharing the significance of their story, they pour their water into a vessel containing the water everyone else has brought. We always leave this service with joy and gratitude for the beloved community that is ours!
We meet at the darkest time of the year, as people have done for thousands of years, to celebrate the return of the light, both literally and symbolically. This event gives us the opportunity to embrace the winter holidays of many faiths and the welcome the coming new year.
Each May we bring flowers from our homes, arrange them in a display in the church, then one by one we speak briefly about what the new season means to us, then choose a flower to take away with us.
(This celebration was originated in 1923 by Dr. Norbert Capek, founder of the modern UU movement in Czechoslovakia, and one of the many martyrs to our cause. When the Nazis took control of Prague in 1940, they sent Dr. Capek to the concentration camp because his UU teachings were, according to the Nazis, "too dangerous to the Reich [for him] to be allowed to live.” But his message of human hope and decency lives on through his Flower Communion, helping us remember the principles and dreams for which he died.)
We celebrate and solemnize many different kinds of public declarations of love and commitment.
There is no joy quite like that of celebrating a child’s entrance into a family. Many families choose to participate in a public ritual where our spiritual community officially welcomes the child and where the naming of the child is uplifted. Most often, these Dedication ceremonies are conducted during our regular Sunday service with sponsors and extended family present. In accordance with our beliefs, each ceremony is tailored to match the family’s spiritual values and hopes for the child.
Memorial Services and Funeral
Memorial Services and funerals are an important way to say goodbye to loved ones. These are planned by the family members and the minister to honor the memory of the person who is deceased.