For me, selfishly shaping the future is a Unitarian Universalist expression of grace. Grace expresses itself in our awareness that we have a choice as to whether or not we will demonstrate love through our small and large redeeming acts of love towards one another. This expression of grace is the driving force behind human spiritual evolution. By this definition, not only the world’s great prophets, but each one of us can be vehicles of grace.
Surely, our efforts today to shape life for future generations can be understood as selfish, redeeming acts of grace. And it is through our Fellowship that we see the bonds that bind us all to those who are living now and to future generation. Our relationship with the Fellowship assures us we are not struggling for justice on our own, but as members of a larger community. I believe this religious community provides the grounding for acts of grace. Alone, our vision is too narrow to see all that must be seen and our strength too limited to do all that must be done. Together we discover the vision for all that is needed for the future. Together we gain the strength to be vehicles of grace.
Our Fellowship is a spiritual sanctuary and an incubator that helps us discern which acts of grace will be driving forces behind humanity’s spiritual evolution.  In this challenging time in the United States, “Now Is the Time” to provide the financial support that sustains and builds our religious community.  Your support, our united support is a selfish act of grace. And thus this service is the beginning of our 2017-2018 STEWARDSHIP CAMPAIGN.

Jeff Lockwood will explore with us the importance of free speech to any democracy—from a nation to a religious community. To understand moral hazards censorship, there is no more compelling, contemporary context than the energy industry’s application of economic pressure on governmental bodies and public institutions to suppress the expression of ideas that are contrary to the financial interests of those who profit from fossil fuels. Based on this recent book, Behind the Carbon Curtain: The Energy Industry, Political Censorship and Free Speech, he will share stories and thoughts about human freedom, the control of citizens by those in power, the dire risks of dissent in times of fear, and the importance of speaking the truth about oppression—whether political, economic, or both.

Jeff Lockwood is a UW professor of Natural Sciences & Humanities and long-time UUFL member.
Children’s Religious Education

Many Unitarian Universalists claim Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States (1800-1808), to be a Unitarian. But, is this true? In my reflection I’ll explore the religious views that grounded Thomas Jefferson’s life and work as a way to help us decide whether he could truly be claimed as a Unitarian.
Children’s Religious Education
Sign up for Mystery Pals

With the flood of faked stories masquerading as news, and clearly false statements from officials fouling our democracy, how can ordinary citizens sort out reality from unreality? A functioning democracy requires a baseline of actual facts so that we can safely debate policy.
Journalist Ann Imse covered the collapse of the Soviet Union for the Associated Press as a Moscow correspondent, and later worked for the Rocky Mountain News, the Orange County Register and numerous other news operations in print, online, radio and television. She will give us some strategies for discerning fact from fiction in today’s disorienting media environment.
Children’s Religious Education

Since first invented, tables have been silent listeners and witnesses to conversations ranging from the mundane to the profoundly spiritual to the world-shaping. I’ve found that the table in a religious community often can rep-resent a significant theological tenet. If I asked you to reflect on what your table has heard and witnessed, I suspect you’d be surprised by what you’d discover and what it can reveal about you or your family or your loved ones. In my reflection I’ll consider the value of the table in our lives.
Change for Change
Children’s Religious Education

How can three words generate such controversy? Why does this simple assertion evoke defensiveness? What is the story and meaning behind, BLACK LIVES MATTER? This Sunday Dr. Forbes will help us navigate the social discourse churning around Black Live Matter. Is it merely a moral affirmation; does it encompass a new or ongoing movement; how can we understand reactions and responses—and what would it mean to us and the larger community if the UUFL were to publicly announce our alliance with Black Lives Matter?  Erin Forbes is a UW professor of English and African American & Diaspora Studies.

Although UUs aren’t typically steeped in traditions of guilt and self-loathing, we are still quite fallible and flawed. Not just fallible, most people have qualities, habits, beliefs or behaviors which may feel shameful to recognize. Rather than following an urge to conceal or deny our negative aspects, today’s message will encourage us to accept the entirety of our being– the good, the bad and the ugly. Part of feeling true love for our fellow human is to first fully acknowledge, accept, and love oneself. Linda Meeker is a long time member of our Fellowship, Board Chair and licensed school Psychologist.

Personal letters often reveal much about the personalities of the writers and the recipients. This can be particularly true in the case of love letters. In this service, you will hear historic love letters of famous people, letters discovered in the archives of museums across the world. You’ll also hear love letters written by ordinary people. All of these let-ters not only help shine light on the writers’ personalities, and the recipients’ too, but give us an intimate perspective of the times the correspondents lived in.
You’re invited to bring a love letter (or excerpts from it) or a poem written by a family member or friend to share during our “Responses from the Gathered Peoples” time. Letters, which used to be somewhat common, are now rare. Perhaps this service will motivate you to pen a handwritten letter to a special person in your life and give your descendants something to treasure with grateful hearts.

It’s been my experience as a minister that Unitarian Universalist people become frightened when they hear the word theology because it conjures in their minds a system of belief that is irrational. However, there is a theology that is anything but irrational. It is a theology that is grounded in quantum physics, systems theory, chaos theory and evolution. And, actually, it is a belief system that can be considered a theology or a philosophy. So it can resonate with a theist, agnostic, humanist or atheist. The beauty of this belief system is that most Unitarian Universalists already hold these beliefs but don’t realize that what they believe in is embodied in a complete theology/philosophy.
My reflection is a quick tour through process theology. It will speak to people who have not yet encountered a belief system that satisfies their sense of what is real and possible. If you know someone who does not belong to a religious community because they believe there is not a religion that is grounded in science, or someone who is just interested in the intersection of science and religion, invite them to this service!
NOTE: Please see my invitation on page 5 of the newsletter to join me in a special evening gathering where I’ll lead an in-depth discussion about process theology/philosophy based upon the 2011 movie The Adjustment Bureau starring Matt Damon and Emily Blunt.

Led by members Catie Ballard and Barbara Bogart and building on previous programs, we will continue to work our way through the alphabet of words with spiritual connotations.