Worship

SUNDAY SERVICE DETAILS

When: Sundays at 10 A.M.

Where: Find us on the corner of Circle Blvd and NW Firwood Drive, just West of the Corvallis Zen Circle. You may also join the service on Zoom.

Directions: Find us on the corner of Circle Blvd and NW Firwood Drive, just West of the Corvallis Zen Circle.

Map:

JOIN ONLINE

There are two ways to attend Worship Remotely:

  1. Join on Zoom: we use this same Zoom link every week. (Clicking on the link will open a Zoom meeting). If you have not used Zoom before, here is a guide: Joining a Zoom Meeting.
  2. Facebook Livestream: We livestream the Sunday services to the UUFC FaceBook page.

The Order of Service is available if you like to follow along. We sometimes make changes all the way up until Sunday morning, so the Order of Service may not be available until a few minutes before the service.

WHAT TO EXPECT AT WORSHIP

Most of our Sunday morning services typically include inspirational readings, a story for children, choir and congregational singing, and a sermon by our minister or guest. We also have a variety of special services.

Summer Sunday services are less formal with a variety of guest speakers in addition to our minister.

Dress for UUFC services is mostly casual, but ranges from tees to ties. Dress in whatever way is comfortable for you. Children and youth usually attend Religious Exploration classes, but are welcome in services too. Children mainly wear play clothes.

Following our services, we have a Coffee and Conversation hour in the Social Hall adjacent to the Sanctuary. Come meet and greet!

And once a month we have a delicious Action Lunch to support charities in our community and throughout the world. Please join us. We want to get to know you and want you to get to know us.

ABOUT WORSHIP

What is worship?

The word “worship” means many things to many people, and is defined in many different ways. It refers to acts and attitudes, celebrations and rituals, events shared by groups, and individual experiences. It refers to ascribing value or worth to ideals, ideas, and beliefs; to giving homage and praise to a god or gods; to taking time and intention to centering oneself and focusing on values and ideals. Definitions of “worship” are generally understood and shared within specific cultural contexts. There is no one right definition or one shared definition.

What does worship at UUFC look like?

Historically, Unitarian Universalism is a tradition which evolved from the radical wing of the Protestant Reformation, a decades-long struggle within western Christianity to define sources of religious authority and forms of religious community. Because of this heritage, the most common Sunday Service in a UU congregation looks more like a protestant Christian worship service than any other kind of worship. Yet, in the nearly 200 years of American Unitarian/Universalism, much as changed, as the religious culture has become much more diverse. Therefore, our services include diverse formats and elements and broad aims.

What generally happens during a worship service?

Welcome – brief introductions from service leaders and participants, and an assurance that all are free to attend and participate

Introit – usually a song or music, to signal the setting aside of regular or daily concerns and the intentional turning to a time of reflection and aspiration, together

Opening Words – a statement to remind us why we gather in this place in this way

Lighting of the Chalice – the symbol of our liberal religious heritage, an affirmation of our core values of religious freedom, reason and embrace of diversity

Opening Song – re-affirming our gathering and our intentions, using our bodies and breath

Affirming Our Connections

Having taken time to settle in and focus our attention and intentions, we move to Affirming Our Connections, which usually includes:

Wisdom from the World’s Traditions – a reading from one of the sources of wisdom for our religious growth and learning, from any and all of the classical religious traditions, or from poetry, prose, science, etc.

Time for All Ages – a story for all ages, aimed primarily at elementary aged children, to help them learn about our tradition, to help them know and feel that they are a valued part of our inter-generational community, and to help them understand what it means to be a Unitarian Universalist. The children and youth leave for their Religious Exploration sessions following this time of sharing.

Sharing of Sorrows and Joys – a time to share with each other the most important things that are happening in our lives –-experiences of loss and gain, of birth and death, of fear, of joy and gratitude, of sickness, recovery and health. This kind of sharing is very important for us as a community, to know what is true and real for each other and therefore for ourselves – to affirm the realities which connect us. It is also a very big challenge: to tell our own truths and to focus on the most important things. This is not a time for political opinions, announcements of events, stories about other people, or long-winded details. This practice of sharing truths is usually followed by a meditation on breathing and on connectedness, then shared singing.

Searching for Wisdom and Inspiration

Having been reminded of what we share, we move into Searching for Wisdom and Inspiration, which usually includes:

Spoken Meditation and Sharing of Silence – to nurture contemplation, honesty, and inner peace

Music for Reflection

Readings – expressions of important points to be explored in the sermon

Sermon, Homily or Presentation – focus on a topic of importance for our religious, spiritual, and congregational lives, by a minister or guest speakers.

The Offering – the sharing of our resources towards living out the mission and goals of the church

Giving Thanks for All That Sustains Us – our collective reminder that life is a gift, and together we can make a difference

Returning to the World

Finally, we arrive at the time for Returning to the World, which usually includes:

Announcements – an educational moment, to describe some of the priorities, work, and events of the congregation

Closing Song– once again to engage our bodies and breath in our intentions

Closing Words– a reminder to keep our ideals in our minds and hearts amidst the distractions of daily life

Postlude – music for going out together

FORMS OF WORSHIP

Sunday Services

Historically, Unitarian Universalism is a tradition which evolved from the radical wing of the Protestant Reformation, a decades-long struggle within western Christianity to define sources of religious authority and forms of religious community. Because of this heritage, the most common Sunday Service in a UU congregation looks more like a protestant Christian worship service than any other kind of worship. Yet, in the nearly 200 years of American Unitarian/Universalism, much as changed, as the religious culture has become much more diverse. Therefore, our services include diverse formats and elements and broad aims. More about Sunday Services.

Wheel of the Year

Every six weeks or so, we gather at each of the eight points on the Wheel of the Year as an intergenerational community to celebrate holidays from nature-based neo-pagan tradition with story, song, and ritual. Some of these holidays are widely known, like Yule, the Winter Solstice. Some, like Lughnasadh, are not as well recognized. The eight sacred days on the Wheel start with Yule in December, then proceed to Imbolc in February, Ostara in March, Beltane in May, Litha in June, Lughnasadh in August, Mabon in September, Samhain in October, and then right back around the Wheel to Yule. This cycle of celebration echoes the cycles of the changing year, and it honors the interdependent web of which we are all a part.

More about Wheel of the Year Services

Dance Planet

Dance Planet is a community dance celebration for everyone. Move your own way to a joyous blend of music from all around the planet and across the decades. Admission to this family-friendly event is a suggested $5–$15 donation, but nobody is turned away for lack of funds. One hundred percent of proceeds go to local Earth-friendly causes.

Kirtan

Kirtan is a very simple & powerful way to meditate. It’s effortless & joyful; the music does the work for you as you flow with the melody & rhythm. As you sing you experience a deep connection with the musicians, the other audience members and yourself. And when the music stops, your mind is quiet.

Because kirtan has roots in India, many of the chants are sung in Sanskrit. These ancient chants contain powerful renewing & transformative energy that helps us reconnect with the Divinity that resides within all of us. If you’ve ever chanted responses in Latin or Hebrew in your religious tradition, then you know how powerful singing in an ancient, holy language can be. You can be completely immersed in the sound, with no words to distract the mind — the magic of the chants can then carry you within. While singing along at a kirtan concert, you can experience your own voice becoming as beautiful as those performing—all voices merge together to become One Voice.

We have kirtan every Friday night at the Fellowship. The 1st and 3rd Fridays are a Community Kirtan in person in Room 7, other Friday nights we hold the kirtan on Zoom. We also host live events.

From the Minister

  • Between Us – 4/14/2024

    Last week I mentioned a musician who often reminds their audiences that “This is not entertainment – this is a spiritual practice.” It’s a beautiful ideal for a UU congregation such as the Fellowship. At our best we are a community of practice, aiming at high ideals! So much more than interesting conversation and fun ways to spend time together (although those things are included – they are simply not our highest aims.)

    Here are several ways to enter into the practice:

    ~Plan to be part of the worship review which begins on May 3 (6:30 pm) and May 4 (9 am) to help discover our common needs and goals for worship (in various forms) at the Fellowship

    ~Make your pledge of financial support to the Fellowship for 2024-25 as soon as possible

    ~ Join in one of the Town Halls (April 21, May 5, 11:45 AM) to prepare for the Annual Meeting (May 19) to help the discussions we have and the decisions we need to make be caring, thoughtful and well-informed.

    In other words – be serious about your part of the life of this congregation. Bring your best intentions and your best self, for the good of the whole!

    Also, for those who have asked about the readings in the Easter Sunday service on March 31, here are the references:

    ~Two articles by Rev. Myke Johnson: “Radical Love” (April 2023) and “Sacred Trees and Resurrection” (July 2019) at UUA.org

    ~”Saving Paradise: How Christianity Traded Love of This World for Crucifixion and Empire” by Rebecca Ann Parker and Rita Nakashima Brock, Beacon Press, 2009.

    Author

  • Between Us, 4/7/2024

    April is Stewardship Month at the Fellowship, among other good things (like Earth Month and Poetry Month…) This means it’s the time we each consider our role as part of the congregation, as part of the covenant, as part of this living tradition. It’s the time when we make pledges of support – of our…

    read on

  • These Ancient Modern Stories

    The Jewish and Christian traditions are foundational in the long evolution of stories which have shaped Unitarian Universalism. It is now the season for two of the most important of those stories: the exodus of the ancient Hebrew people from Egypt – the Passover story, and the death and resurrection of Jesus – the Easter…

    read on

  • Daily Practice: A Weekly Reminder, 3/22/2024

    Along with trees and bushes and bulbs, the Fellowship seems to be in a season of blooming! Events and activities abound – so many ways to get together with others, to share in religious learning and growth, to increase justice and peace step by little step. New formats and methods for communication are emerging. The…

    read on

  • Daily Practice – A Weekly Reminder, 3/17/2024

    This is the week – Spring has definitely arrived. Daffodils and jonquils have been holding on thru cold rainy days – and now they are standing proudly! The long line of ornamental plum trees around the corner are purple pink today. When the crescent moon appeared last night, with Jupiter shining close by, frogs and…

    read on

  • Between Us, 3/10/2024

    At the end of every OSU term I mark out ten to twelve hours on my schedule to have short one-to-one meetings with all the students in my class on World Religions. There are usually around 45 students, so it takes a while. I have learned that it is one of the most worthwhile things…

    read on

  • From the Board President – Sheryl Stuart, 3/1/2024

    I’ve been reflecting on the beautiful work of our RE team over the past several years in helping us be more attentive to the needs of multiple generations within the Fellowship, recognizing that there are differences in experience, expectations and more between different generations. As we’ve been blessed with more, younger children being present, especially…

    read on

  • Between Us, 2/25/2024

    (I wrote this in 2016. Re-reading it during this Black History Month was helpful – as if I had written a reminder to myself check in some years later..) I’ve heard that as we age and mature, the best we can do is replace one habit with another habit. That doesn’t sound very promising, but…

    read on

  • Daily Practice: A Weekly Reminder

    To begin a day with notes of thanks is never a waste of time. It is a courageous way to orient oneself to a day, given how easy it is to start with complaints. To sit quietly for a few minutes to see what gratitudes emerge can feel like what the phrase “heart song” might…

    read on

  • The Worshiping Community

    Is religion dying out? Some say it is – others say it should. Since I consider religion to be an innate human process, I doubt it will disappear, but there’s no question in my mind that its forms will continue to change – as has been true forever. To understand why the Fellowship is so…

    read on

  • Between Us, 2/2/2024

    When I answered the call to ministry here at the Fellowship in 2013, the letter of call which became the Letter of Agreement between minister and congregation included this as its second point: 1.2 “Anti-Oppression AwarenessThis congregation accepts its responsibility to continue to offer its members and minister(s) opportunities to increase their ability to function…

    read on

MUSIC

Music is an important part of the life of the Fellowship, and of every Sunday service. If you love to sing or play instruments and want to get involved, please read on!

Congregational Singing

Every Sunday morning we sing together. We sing together because it feels good and it builds community. It may be the most important thing we do on Sunday.

UUFC Choir

The choir rehearses Wednesday nights from 7 to 8:30 and sings twice a month for Sunday services. This dedicated group works hard to provide choral music that uplifts and inspires all who hear them on Sunday mornings. The choir is a wonderful supportive and welcoming community for singers of all skill levels. The choir is where all the important stuff happens at any church. So if you want to get close to the action, join the choir! Everyone is welcome and encouraged to participate. If you are interested, talk to the choir director, Steven Evans-Renteria.

House Band

We now have a house band at UUFC that plays once a month for Sunday services. We have guitars, percussion, singers, piano, and guitarron. Once in a while the choir and the house band join forces, and it really rocks! Check us out on Sunday morning.

Guest Musicians

We’ve had a number of wonderful guest musicians show up to services to add to our music, including Johanna Beekman, Roy Zimmerman, Peter Mayer, and others, including local groups like Compass Rose and the Delgani String Quartet.

Other Musical Opportunities

Before the pandemic we had regular music events at the Fellowship including the Holiday Sing-Along, Music Sharing nights (basically open mic night). We hope to begin incorporating more events like this in the coming months, so watch the newsletter and weekly announcements for updates.

SUNDAY SERVICE VIDEOS

We have saved videos from most of the services from the past several years. Occasionally a service video doesn’t get recorded, or saved. If you can’t find a on the YouTube playlists, it might be in the Facebook live stream videos.

YouTube Playlist – Services from 2024

YouTube Playlist – Services from 2023

Service Videos (January 2020 – March 2023): The link opens a pdf of an older method of storing links to service videos, before we started uploading them to YouTube.

Facebook Livestream Videos

Our Mission

Explore. Love. Act.

We gather as an inclusive religious community to search for meaning, build deep connections, and inspire action toward a better world for all.

Author