All services are held on Sundays at 11:00 am unless otherwise noted.
January 19 – “Do Not Bow Down” by Mary Grace Ketner
Some of this morning’s guests, recipients of First UU’s Courageous Love Awards, may be surprised to learn that, in a Unitarian Universalist Church, one sometimes has to justify or apologize for using Bible stories as a sermon text. But when imagination is applied, as in the case of an Old Testament story retold by Rev. William Barber (Moral Mondays, Repairers of the Breach, Poor People’s Campaign,) the prophetic power of ancient Hebrew legends as an appropriate moral model for our 21st Century lives becomes clear.
Mary Grace Ketner serves our community as co-chair of the Interfaith Welcome Coalition and this church as a member of the choir and the Social Justice Committee. She can often be found behind her laptop creating meeting agendas or at peace and justice rallies wearing her yellow T-shirt and her IWC livestrong bracelet (“Welcome is our middle name!”) Or maybe not. Come and find out!
January 26 – “Who We Have Been and Who We Can Be” by Bill Bush
Bill Bush will talk about First UU’s 75-year history, drawing on his book Beloved Community: A New History of the First Unitarian Universalist Church of San Antonio. The church was founded in the 1940s, amid a national revival of liberal religion in response to the rise of authoritarianism and fascism. Over its 75 years as a thriving community of spiritual explorers and free thinkers, First UU has stood for a set of values that are more important than ever in our current times. Reflecting on the past and present, Bill also will suggest what First UU might be celebrating at its centennial anniversary in 2045.
Bill Bush has been a member of First UU since 2009. He is Professor of History at Texas A&M University-San Antonio, where he teaches classes on modern U.S. history and the history of children and families. He lives in San Antonio with his wife, Mary Wright, and children, Alexander and Oliver Bush.
February 2 – “What is Emergence?” by Rev. Mark Skrabacz
A month ago, I listed my first Sermon title on the Worship Calendar as What is Emergence? I had intended to address the question of “What is emerging at First UU at this very moment?” Yet after listening to some of you, including a group of lay leaders, it has come to my attention that perhaps a primary question for First UU is: Who are we? Religious Liberals might not seem to possess the motivations that stimulate many dominant religious organizations, like fear of hell and of a God of judgment, which are powerful, but are they truthful? Are they worthy of our very lives? I ask you, how many of us are here because we are done with dogma, finished with “must do” rules and the resulting feelings of guilt? Yet who are we?
It’s true that in this Community we are free and responsible for our own search for truth and meaning. That’s our fourth UU Principle. It means we attend to our conscience and consciousness and we are committed to grow in community through a democratic process. It doesn’t mean that we can believe whatever we want. Our lives require critical thinking and greater understanding of the feelings of our hearts. Hence with growing aliveness in our heads and hearts, and an embodied spirituality, and as a part of an earth-honoring, justice-making community, we are constantly learning and growing into a new context for our individual and collective spiritual and personal development. One that is appropriate for our lived twenty-first century circumstances. This describes in part, the theme of Emergence that we will explore as a Beloved Community on my first Sunday with you.
February 9 – “What is Black History Month?” by Rev. Mark Skrabacz
February 16 – “Love Perseveres – A Valentine’s Reflection” by Rev. Mark Skrabacz
February 23 – “Hymn Sing”