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Audio recordings, at your convenience. Nurture your spirit. Unitarian Universalism draws from the teachings of the major world religions and appeals to people from a diversity of traditions. At the core of our faith are a set of principles that reflect values, rather than dogma. Our religious beliefs vary. For both the heart and the mind, Shelter Rock offers engaging worship, religious education, opportunities for social action, a breadth of extraordinary music, and a community of caring, cu ...
 
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When faced with change, we often feel like we are standing at the edge of a precipice, looking out into uncertainty. One way to help adapt to change is to lean on the things that provide stability in unstable times. Join Erol Delos Santos, student minister, to reflect on identifying spiritual resources and how to use them to soften moments of trans…
 
This 2022 annual celebration of the Thanksgiving holiday was a family Service. Music was provided by the Young Peoples Choir, Jazz Ensemble, and UUCSR Choir. Once again, we were able to come together and tell about the bread which nourishes us. Attendees brought bread to share in the Social Hall after the Worship Service. Guest at Your Table Boxes …
 
Change is remarkable in the way it leaves us different and yet at heart still the same person. But human change is also complex—the way anything is complex when human beings are involved. Howard Mansfield’s insightful 2001 book, The Same Ax, Twice, explores how the restoration of things—like an old ax with a new handle—involves both change and stab…
 
This month we celebrate Thanksgiving and many people tell the story of the “Pilgrims and Indians.” The story is based in truth but has gained mythic status. There is, of course, more than one perspective in the story and more than one way to tell any story. How can we/should we change the story to be more inclusive?…
 
In a time when information is available to us in an instant, we often don't dwell in the uncomfortable space of the unknown. The truth is that there are limitless possibilities in 'not knowing'. Imagination thrives in the fertile grounds of mystery. There is something sacred in the secrets of the world around us. Listen to reflect on the courage re…
 
One of the hallmarks of social life in America today is how many things out there are annoying. Confronting the myriad annoyances without losing it takes a remarkable level of centeredness. And maybe courage, which may be a strange character trait to associate with the ability to meet incoming annoyances with serenity. Even so, today's worship serv…
 
The notion of taking responsibility for “the seven generations yet to come” comes from a Native American aphorism that became quite popular in both the New Age and ecology movements. But it is sometimes read in a very linear way that can make it feel burdensome. There is another way of thinking that asks us to create the conditions today for living…
 
Courage is the ability to do something that frightens you. It is not actually having no fear at all. From where comes the courage of this community? From the Jewish tradition of Yom Kippur we are asked to have the courage to examine our actions, reflect and repent – atone and begin again. Sunday, October 2, 2022…
 
In the Jewish tradition, Rosh Hashanah commemorates the creation of the world and marks the beginning of Days of Awe, a 10-day period of prayer and reflection which culminates in Yom Kippur. How would you celebrate the birthday of the world? How would you begin anew? Held at UUCSR on Sunday, September 25, 2022.…
 
Humans seem to have an innate need for belonging. On Sunday, September 11, 2022, we talked about what it means to be mortal under a sky full of stars, and to find companionship and belonging throughout the days of our lives.By Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Shelter Rock
 
Welcome to the September 2022 Soulful Sundown LIVE, a monthly collaboration between ministers and live musicians. In September, Rev. Jaye Brooks weaves spoken word with LIVE music from the Cosmic Orchestra. Coffee House follows with Guest Musical Artist Abbie Gardner. Onsite and online. Masks encouraged. Beneficiary: ABBA Back to School Supplies Dr…
 
Times of tumult, like these, of great uncertainty, can initiate an acceleration of a calling. This call may include an awakening of the elder and the sage within each of us. In many old wisdom traditions, elders were considered to have one foot firmly planted on the ground of presence and of survival, and the other in the realm of great imagination…
 
The image of a tree—roots, trunk, branches, and leafy canopy—resonates with humans in so many ways. It’s a family tree, with the history of our ancestors. It’s a tree of life, showing the interrelationships among all species. And it’s often a symbol of community. In Ross Gay’s poem, “To the Fig Tree on 9th and Christian,” a tree on a Philadelphia s…
 
Depending on where we live, describing ourselves as Unitarian Universalists can complicate our relationships, our responses to social issues. How does geography play a role in our identity as UU's? How do we bring together Unitarian Universalists, across state lines, among cultures and backgrounds, to work together for the common good? August 21, 2…
 
One of life's challenges is to cope and even thrive despite the accidents and unplanned consequences that beset us. Wendell Berry's poem "The Sycamore" offers a glimpse of how we might gather all accidents into our purpose. In a time when we need hope, a sycamore signals that hope is possible. August 14, 2022…
 
What does it mean to reengage religious and spiritual practices that we grew up with, that meant something to our ancestors, and, might mean something to us? In the words of biblical scholar Micah Kiel, “Rather than jettison, we must reexamine and rethink those traditions that have formed us” (Apocalyptic Ecology, xxi, relying on Lynn White). Sunda…
 
Stephen Michael Smith, Music Director UNHEARD VOICES: 3 Women Composers for Orchestra Louise Farrenc, Overture No 1, op 23 Florence Price, Symphony No 1 in E minor Margaret Bonds: Two Spirituals for Voice and Orchestra Anthony McGlaun, soloist Anthony P. McGlaun is noted for his clarity of tone, musicality and expressive delivery of text. He has a …
 
How often have we been denied the wisdom and creativity which come from marginalized voices/expressions? How might we make ourselves and our community more open? The Annual Summer Orchestra Concert followed the Worship Service. The Concert celebrated the “unheard voices” of three women composers for orchestra on Sunday, July 31, 2022.…
 
"Summer has a flavor like no other. Always fresh and simmered in sunshine."—These words of Oprah Winfrey reminds me that the sixty summers I’ve lived or the fifty five of them I can recall each has a flavor and excitement; a narrative and memories filled with highs and lows, barbecue and sweet corn that fills my heart with joy and the blessings of …
 
Tenor Anthony P. McGlaun and Music Director Stephen Michael Smith talk about music, race, and making music as a Black man in today's America. Mr. McGlaun is the vocal soloist at the "Unheard Voices" Summer Concert of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Shelter Rock Orchestra on Sunday, July 31, 2022. $10 at the door. Reception follows. All w…
 
On July 17, 2022 at 11 AM, we asked, "What does it take to maintain wilderness within an urban or suburban setting?" Members of Shelter Rock's Green Sanctuary team shared stories of our woods and coyotes, our community garden, and the native plants in these hundred acres protected from development. In addition to the re-wilding of our local ecosyst…
 
In the Sunday Service on July 10, 2022, we explored a Social Gospel for the 21 Century that asked what our response might be to the inequities exposed by the recent pandemic and the social unrest that has evolved during this time of uncertainty. “What We Deserve: Equity and Equality in the Age of Pandemic” was led by Rev. Aaron Payson, Guest Minist…
 
Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore led the Service, titled "Spiritual Democracy" on July 3, 2022. The Fourth of July holiday celebrates the American Revolution and the beginning of US political democracy. UU Principles also celebrate the democratic process but as something more than a political system. How do we understand the spiritual democracy which surr…
 
We celebrated the 2022 UUA General Assembly theme, "Meet the Moment." Wherever we've come from, wherever we're going, this very moment is the only time we can act to change ourselves, our lives, and the life of the wider world. Thousands of Unitarian Universalists gathered to consider the moment we all are now meeting. At the UU Congregation at She…
 
Be Your True Colors: JUNETEENTH and PRIDE SERVICE was presented on June 19, 2022. June is Pride Month, an annual celebration commemorating the 1969 Stonewall Riots that launched the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer rights movement in the United States. Juneteenth is the day we recognize the end of slavery in the United States in 1865.…
 
Memorial Day, led by the Rev. Jennifer Brower This weekend, as many members of our congregation were on retreat together at Silver Bay, we gathered for a service of song and spoken word. As we honored Memorial Day and our nation’s fallen soldiers, we reflected upon the ways that each of us might serve life and humankind in creating peace. Choral mu…
 
MAMA'S DAY, led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore Mother's Day was begun as "Mother's Day for Peace" in 1870 by Unitarian Julia Ward. She made an "appeal to womanhood throughout the world to unite for peace" With "Mama's Day" we are called to honor all those who "mother" especially those who mentor in the midst of pain, war, and struggle. However imperf…
 
Climate change is real, and a real threat. But in small ways all over the planet, people are acting to resist and push back—to renew and restore the Earth. These acts of planetary creativity and vision are cause for awakening to hope. Rev. Jaye Brooks with Green Sanctuary Members Elaine Peters, AnneMarie Ansel, Ellen Councill, Jim Peters, and Winte…
 
Awakening and Unfinished As we continue to open our hearts to the unfolding mysteries of spring, we gathered to witness the moments of wonder present in our daily lives—lives still awaking, unfinished. Our special guest was Cassandra Montenegro, a candidate for UU ministry who studies at Harvard Divinity School. She brought a vibrant inner li…
 
In his book, Awakenings, Dr. Oliver Sacks recounted the cases of his patients who had contracted sleeping sickness during the great epidemic just after World War I. They were frozen in time until 1969 when Sacks gave them the medication L-DOPA and the patients “awakened”. The book, and the movie based on the book, explore questions of health, disea…
 
“Adversity is not without comforts and hopes.” --Francis Bacon Members of the Senior Seminar youth group reflected on the adversities they have faced during COVID, the comforts and lessons they have found, and their hopes for the future. This Youth-led Worship Service was held on March 27, 2022.By Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Shelter Rock
 
During this month when our learning and worship theme is "Renewing Faith," UUCSR's ministers have asked members, "What, for you, was a key moment of renewal or insight about your faith?" Over a life’s journey, our understanding of faith develops and changes. In today's worship service, Shelter Rock members with diverse life experiences shared their…
 
In Unitarian Universalism, the idea of "Renewing Faith" (this month's learning and worship theme) isn't so much about reviving faith of a particular style and description. Instead, it's more about understanding the roots that have supported faith thus far and spreading the wings that take us to a new place of understanding. In our faith tradition, …
 
In the Service on February 27, 2022, we reflected on the days we have been given, our complicated lives, our moment in history and the seeds of joy that abide here. The Service was an invitation to accept the gift of the day we have been given, with all the beauty and challenge that we find here, and to meet our days with gratitude, resourcefulness…
 
What does it take to love our way through fear? The poet Amanda Gorman, in her book, Call Us What We Carry, acknowledges both the burdens of this time in history and the miracle of human resilience. The struggle continues. How do we open our hearts and let love try its best? February 13, 2022By Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Shelter Rock
 
Led by Rev. Dr. Natalie Fenimore. As a Unitarian Universalist community, we are called to be a community of care. The ministry of being more equitable, inclusive and diverse is justice work – and it is also a spiritual practice. We can explore how our Unitarian Universalist Principles support us in widening our circle of concern. February 6, 2022…
 
Lifting Up the Power of Leaders Greisa Martinez Rosas and Make the Road New York Co-Executive Director José Lopez, will co-deliver a sermon entitled "If Only We Dare." They are both examples of the impact of multigenerational leadership development, as José also began his work in community organizing as a teenager and is now running one of the most…
 
As Unitarian Universalists, we see our justice work as living our values in to the world. We covenant that "service is our prayer." What might it look like to create a Spiritual Practice of justice work? Meet Janine Gelsinger, the Executive Director of UUJAZ (Unitarian Universalist Justice Arizona, the state action network) and a member of the Belo…
 
The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.(1929-1968) quoted the Unitarian minister, Theodore Parker (1810-1860) when we said “the Arc of the Universe is long but it bends toward justice.” Our UU communities have long embraced a commitment to taking this long journey towards building a more just, peaceful and loving world. Our young adults incorporate th…
 
This month's learning and worship theme, Living With Intention, invited exploration of reproductive justice and a woman's choice. To consider this potentially contentious topic, we invited everyone in with open hearts and minds, and held in love anyone who has ever made a difficult choice. Led by Rev. Jaye Brooks with members of the UUCSR Women's G…
 
The sermon on December 26, 2021 asks: What is wisdom? How does it differ from knowledge? Is the difference worth discerning? It will explore the landscape of the difference between knowledge and wisdom and how the difference plays out in our modern world. Led by Guest Minister Rev. Anthony Johnson.
 
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