Archives: Services

It’s a Process

They (whoever ‘they’ are) say that the only constant is change. In this service, we’ll explore what that means from a theological and spiritual perspective, and how this way of understanding calls us to our work in the world.

Rev. Kimberley Debus is a community minister based in upstate New York, inspiring an artful and art-filled faith. She consults with congregations and religious professionals throughout the denomination. She has previously served at the Church of the Larger Fellowship as well as congregations on Long Island and Key West.

How the Cosmic Stories of Cassandra and Pandora Offer us Perspective on Living Through This Challenging Time of a Pandemic

The biblical story about Solomon’s dream offers us an interesting question. In the dream God tells Solomon to ask of Her whatever gift he most wants. What would be your answer? In our sharing we will consider the possible responses of Fannie Lou Hamer, Abraham Heschel, etc.
Roddy O’Neil Cleary is a retired Emerita UU minister who is a religious hybrid, a catholic unitarian.  She was a member of a religious community of sisters for almost 15 years, a campus minister at UVM for 15 years, and served at 1st UU in Burlington for 11 years. She is working at present in Hospice and prison ministry.

Purpose, Not Perfection

In the setting of the pandemic and Unitarian Universalism’s need for perfectionism, most commonly found in expectations around worship, Erica Baron of the New England Region writes “striving for perfection does not nourish” and “we affirm the turn away from perfectionism.” As a bi-racial person I see perfectionism as a tool of white supremacy, so her encouragement to be less than perfect speaks to my heart. I am looking forward to sharing these thoughts and heart feelings with you. Don’t miss it…….remember to SPRING FORWARD.

Rev. Di Bona has served Unitarian Universalism for 30 years, and is the 2018 recipient of the Award for Distinguished Service to the Cause of Unitarian Universalism. In her retirement, she serves as the Palliative Care chaplain at South Shore Hospital in Weymouth, MA. She has served as a member of the UU Nominating Committee and on the UU Women’s Federation board. She is the former President of the Diverse and Revolutionary Unitarian Universalist Multicultural Ministries, and continues to serve DRUUMM as Chaplain. Rev. Di Bona also serves on the Board of the Church of the Larger Fellowship. She is a Chaplain to the UUA Board of Trustees and Finding Our Way Home

Journey to Environmental Justice

For decades, too many of us have viewed the struggles against pollution and systemic racism as unrelated or even at odds. In this time of pandemic and antiracist uprising, more and more people are coming to understand the inescapable connections between these movements. Rev. Small will tell his own story and invite us all into more powerful activism.

Cited by Bill McKibben as “one of the key figures in the religious environmental surge,” Rev. Fred Small is Executive Director of Massachusetts Interfaith Power & Light, which mobilizes people of faith as climate activists.  He also serves as Minister for Climate Justice at Arlington Street Church, Boston. A Unitarian Universalist parish minister for nearly two decades, Fred is also a singer-songwriter and environmental lawyer.  In 2015 he left parish ministry to devote his energies to climate advocacy. One of the first to engage in civil disobedience to draw attention to climate change, he was arrested with 21 others in prayer outside the US Department of Energy in Washington, DC, in May 2001.  In 2007, he was a lead organizer of the Interfaith Walk for Climate Rescue from Northampton to Boston, Massachusetts. Grist Magazine has named him one of 15 Green Religious Leaders worldwide.

The Pluralism of Truth

Truth, as a concept, is changing and we’re pretty uncomfortable about that.  There’s lots of hunkering down around “our truth.”  Plenty of folks are shaking their heads and thinking “Well that’s not true.  How can anyone believe that?”  When competing truths are lifted up, often the outcome is that both truth holders walk away convinced the other is wrong, not true. Does our religiously liberal tradition offer any tools for us to use to work on shaping a new sense of truth?  We are religious pluralists after all.   I look forward to getting this conversation started with all of you at MMUUF!

Paul Mitchell has been the Lay Minister at the Keweenaw Unitarian Universalist Fellowship for the past 2-1/2 years. He works 3/4’s time and provides the full complement of ministerial services. Paul has worked as the Social Justice Ministry Coordinator for the Granite Peak UU Congregation in Prescott Arizona and he was the co-founder and initial Co-Executive Director of the Arizona State Action Network known as UUJAZ. Paul’s a father of three and a grandfather of six. He misses seeing them all but is happy they are healthy.

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Song at the Sea: a Celebration of Freedom

In the Jewish cycle of reading Torah, this week we arrive at the moment when the Israelites cross the Sea of Reeds and begin their new journey towards becoming a nation. This week’s Sabbath is also known as “Shabbat Shira/the Sabbath of Song” and therefore we’ll talk about freedom, song, and what it takes to create a society that is formed through sacred covenant.

Rabbi Jan Salzman was ordained in 2010 by ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal. In 2016, she created Ruach haMaqom, the first Jewish Renewal congregation in Vermont. Previously, she served 6 years as the Assistant Rabbi and Cantor at Ohavi Zedek Synagogue in Burlington, Vermont. She was blessed to have been a student of Reb Zalman. Rabbi Jan serves in the capacity of President of OHALAH, an international professional Association of Renewal Rabbis, Cantors and Rabbinic Pastors. She is on the board of Living Tree Alliance located in Moretown, VT. Rabbi Jan has lived in Vermont for over 40 years, is married to her “rebbitzmon”, Loredo Sola, and has two grown children and two grandchildren.

A Fierce Unrest

We humans are never satisfied. No matter what we achieve, we always want more, or want things to be different.  But at the same time, what we fear and avoid most is almost any sort of change.  What are the consequences of this contradiction on our world and ourselves, and what should we do about it?
Nancy Weis has been a committed UU since her college days and is a member of the Rutland UU Church, where she speaks a couple of times a year.  She is a visual artist, and has spent her professional life teaching, and working as a librarian and administrator at various colleges.  She spends her spare time reading, horseback riding, and thinking about all sorts of things.

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Christmas Eve Service

The Mount Mansfield Unitarian Universalist Fellowship will host a Christmas Eve service at 4pm on Zoom on Thursday, December 24th. The theme is “Sharing Our Light”: a celebration of community, traditions, and shared light in dark times. Songs and readings will be shared. We will close the service with our tradition of lighting candles and singing Silent Night so please have a candle ready at home. All are welcome. Please email us at info@mmuuf.org to receive Zoom connection information.

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Happiness for Everyone: Our Moral Obligation to Change the Economic Paradigm

Happiness is not just an inside job. We are all also governed by systems, beliefs, paradigms – and measures.  Measures like salary, the price of gas or our weight not only guide many of our personal decisions but also can dictate sometimes wildly skewed public policy, like the Gross Domestic Product, or GDP, paradigm which dictates how success is measured much more than it should, and at too high of a price. This sermon highlights the need to adopt a more holistic set of measures for greater well being for all, and to step away from the GDP which is leading to economic devastation and undermining collective happiness and well-being.

Ginny is a co-founder and past president of Gross National Happiness USA, and is currently on the GNHUSA advisory board. In 2011, Ginny started the Happiness Paradigm as a platform for writing, teaching about, and advocating for greater personal happiness and systems change for well-being. She has been a speaker on these topics in Costa Rica; Seattle; Santa Fe; Charlotte, North Carolina, and  and city and state officials crafting a well-being index in Charlotte, North Carolina; and Burlington, Vermont.  Ginny has a masters in Mediation and a Certificate in Positive Psychology. She has brought her education, experience, and insights about happiness to Unitarian Universalist pulpits since 2013. In 2020, Ginny published a book of these sermons called Preaching Happiness: Creating a Just and Joyful World, a book the Midwest Book Review describes as “Deftly written, impressively informative, exceptionally thoughtful and thought-provoking.” Ginny is a member of the Unitarian Church of Montpelier, and is very happy to be back