Sundays at UUS
During Sunday services at UUS, you will find support for your own unique spiritual journey, a celebration of community, a call to love more broadly and actively, and vibrant programs for children & youth.
Location & service times
Sunday services begin at 9:30 a.m. and last for about an hour. Following service, you are invited to gather for coffee and refreshments. You will find Information on childcare and religious education classes in the children & youth section below.
You will find in our Sunday services that big questions are addressed, many sources of wisdom are used as guides, and there is no prescribed way to think. Our members have a range of religious perspectives and backgrounds, and they often report the sense of liberation they felt at discovering a community that accepts them for who they are, inspires them, and broadens their perspective.
What to wear
We are an informal congregation. While a few might wear a jacket and tie, or dress, others come in clothes suitable for weekend activities. Children are encouraged to dress casually as they may be engaged in arts and crafts or outdoor activities.
Service calendar & leaders
From September through May, most services are led by our minister, with support from lay members and invited guests. During the summer, lay members and guests offer personal explorations related to a particular theme in a somewhat less formal format.
On Memorial Day and Labor Day the congregation gathers for a celebratory picnic and no services are held.
Service format & content
At a typical service you will experience a sermon from our minister or a guest speaker, as well as hymns, readings from the pulpit, responsive readings, time for quiet mediation or prayer, and an offering. If you have attended worship at a protestant church, our service format will likely feel familiar.
But the content of our services is very different from those of most other denominations. In particular, you may notice:
- Our central religious symbol is chalice that we light to begin each service.
- We do not rely on the Bible or any other single source for inspiration. Our themes are guided instead by our Unitarian Universalist principles and supported by a wide range of sources.
- We choose our words carefully in all parts of the service to be inclusive and to speak to each individual’s own spiritual journey. You may even recognize traditional hymns with revised lyrics to speak to a broader audience.
- While we celebrate traditional holidays such as Christmas and Easter, we focus on stories, teachings, and earth-centered rituals rather than on miracles.
- Our time together is focused on how we can build a better world in this lifetime, not on salvation or an afterlife. As part of this commitment, our Sunday offering is donated entirely each week to a local community organization.
Children & youth
During the school year we offer religious education classes during Sunday services for preschool through middle school participants, while our high school group typically meets at other times. During Sunday services we also offer free childcare in our nursery for children 0-3 years old.
The nursery is available 10 minutes prior to the start of service, and all school-aged children and youth begin in the sanctuary with their families. The first portion of each service is multigenerational, and children and youth have an opportunity to participate by lighting the chalice, enjoying a story for all ages, and taking part in song and other special worship before classes begin. Children and youth may also stay with their families for Sunday service, if preferred.