Sermons and Services

June 2017

 June 4 — Flowers and the Cycle of Life:  An Intergenerational Flower Communion Service — Rev. Paula Maiorano, UUSD Interim Minister:  The Unitarian Universalist Flower Communion is one of our most beloved traditions and rituals, created by Dr. Norbert Capek in Prague to celebrate diversity at a time when the Nazi party was on the rise. Today’s intergenerational service reflects on the life cycle of both flowers and people. Childcare and program provided for the youngest of our community.

June 11 — Celebrating VoluntarismRev. Paula Maiorano, UUSD Interim Minister:  The Unitarian Universalists of Southern Delaware owe existence to its members whose volunteer talents and hours are endless and priceless. This service recognizes the importance of voluntarism in a democratic society and celebrates the services of our many UUSD volunteers.

June 18 — Farewell and Fare Thee Well — Rev. Paula Maiorano, UUSD Interim Minister:  Rev. Maiorano says goodbye in this her last service with UUSD with blessings for the journey and a reflection on the bittersweet aspects of life and labor.

June 25 — Music Sunday — Musical Expressions of Faith — Dr. Marcelle Schiff, UUSD Music Director:  Dr. Schiff, the choir, the children, and other wonderful music-makers from the congregation will take us on an exploration of “Musical Expressions of Faith.” Music has held a very special place in religious communities throughout time. We will explore the variety of musical traditions and their place in the world of spiritual practice, and examine questions like how important is music in your spiritual journey and what role might music play in your spiritual life.

Recent Sermons

May

May 28: The War Prayer by Mark Twain — UUSD Members: On Memorial Day weekend, we pay tribute to the sacrifices of those who defend us. Our service will be a performance by several UUSD members of Mark Twain’s “The War Prayer,” as scripted by Paul Hale. The piece was left unpublished by Mark Twain at his death in April 1910, largely due to pressure from his family, who feared that the story would be considered sacrilegious. When urged by others to publish it anyway, Twain replied, "No, I have told the whole truth in that, and only dead men can tell the truth in this world. It can be published after I am dead." It was finally published thirteen years after his death.

May 21: Transition: A Look Back and Forward — Rev. Paula Maiorano, UUSD Interim Minister: As the two years of interim ministry come to a close, it is timely to review the outcome of interim goals, consider our achievements together, and discern how your congregation is poised for its future.

May 14: Mothering and Fathering — Rev. Paula Maiorano, UUSD Interim Minister: To different degrees, men and women are made up of qualities and characteristics both feminine and masculine. Both are important. There are times when each of us needs to tap in more to our feminine aspects or more to the masculine. This service explores the feminine mother and masculine father in us all, and considers when these different strengths are important in our relationships.

May 7: The Myths & Realities of Community — Rev. Michelle Collins, Candidate for UUSD's Settled Minister: We come into our communities with a lot of assumptions and idyllic pictures of what community may look like. But many of these pictures are only that — pictures — myths that can actually hold us back. What are some of the myths that we are holding for religious community and what are the realities? It's only through understanding these that we can lean into the real potential for our UU communities.

April

April 30: The Blessings Between Us — Rev. Michelle Collins, Candidate for UUSD's Settled Minister: Many say that the universe is not made of atoms; it's made of stories. And people and the relationships between people even more so. Willingness to share these stories blesses each of us — sharing blesses us through trust and through giving that little part of ourselves to each other. As we start to get to know each other, I'm looking forward to hearing your stories and your hopes and dreams for UUS

April 23 — Transforming Our White Supremacist Culture: Rev. Paula Maiorano, Interim Minister: Actual “white supremacists” are not required to uphold a white supremacist culture. This service is one offered by over five hundred Unitarian Universalists congregations nationwide within the next few weeks, addressing how to identify white supremacy within and beyond the walls of our Unitarian Universalist communities of faith, and within ourselves as well.

April 16 — Georgia O’Keefe and the Wonder of Life: An Earth Day Service for Easter: Rev. Paula Maiorano, Interim Minister: In the spring, earth rises in renewal. When we celebrate the earth, we are reminded why it is so important to care for her. In this service, Rev Maiorano reflects on how the art of Georgia O’Keefe suggests the sheer joy of material being, one of the many reasons to love the earth, our home.

April 9 — Why Then a Donkey? Rev. Paula Maiorano, Interim Minister: The Sunday before Easter in the Christian tradition celebrates the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem. He entered on a donkey. Considering why a donkey helps Unitarian Universalist hear Jesus’ message of the upside down kingdom for our time and faith tradition.

April 2 — When Imperfections Are Beautiful: Rev. Paula Maiorano, Interim Minister: People sometimes strive for perfection, even when we know that life cannot be perfect. This service suggests that there is joy and wisdom in finding the beauty in imperfections.

January

January 29 — “The Splendid Torch” — Deanna Duby, UUSD Member: On the annual Jean Charles Service Sunday, Deanna Duby discusses service from several perspectives, including that of George Bernard Shaw who describes a life of service as “A splendid torch which I’ve got to hold up for a moment. I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.”

January 22 — Wholeness amid Division — Rev. Keith Goheen, UU Beebe Chaplain: A hospital chaplain reflects on the importance of the spiritual life in times of fear and uncertainty. Amid the tempest, the willow tree bends and oak stands firm, but we are not trees and do not possess the spirit of the tree. Ours is the human spirit, and nurturing its growth requires a distinctly human approach when the wintry winds of social and personal change swirl in our lives and our souls.

January 15 — A Spiritual Practice of Leadership — Rev. David Pyle, Congregational Life Staff, Central East Region: Be it in congregations or in other parts of our lives, we are called to be leaders in many different ways. If your leadership brings justice and builds community, no matter where it is, you could be said to be engaging in that leadership as an aspect of your faith and spiritual life.

October 30 — All We Are One — Carol Carter Walker: Carol Carter Walker, UUA  Beyond Categorical Thinking Facilitator, will talk about the urgency of looking beyond categories and stereotypes in our ministerial search and in the fulfillment of our principles and purposes. She will be leading a related Workshop after the Service.