Worship Services 

 Sunday, December 1: Rev. Bill Zelazny

Beauty’s Deeper Connection

Beauty is not decorative. It touches us deeply.  It has the power to dissolve our conscious control, and connect us to levels of our being well beyond our day-to-day concerns.   Humans need beauty to live as much as we need food to live.   As we begin this season of beauty – snow on tree branches, the Messiah, lights decorating houses and trees, family and friends talking and laughing, festive meals, people helping those with less – Bill will explore the concept of beauty.

Sunday, December 8: Professor Robert M. Thorson

Humanism Runs Amok

Humanism, with its nearly exclusive focus on human needs and critical thinking is an important element in UU spirituality.  This species-specific perspective has been largely responsible for a planetary transformation so complete that a new geological epochis required — the Anthropocene. In his talk, professor Thorson will explore the philosophical and spiritual implications of having our own epoch. On balance, the prospect looks good.

Robert M. Thorson, a long-time member of Channing Memorial Church and former board member, has spoken to the congregation about earthly matters twice a year for the last 13 years.  Away from Channing, he’s a professor, writer, journalist, speaker, and consultant.

Sunday, December 15: Rev. Bill Zelazny

On Awe

“He . . . who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead.”  Words of one of the ultimate logical thinkers, the theoretical physicist, Albert Einstein.   On this Sunday in the middle of the Holiday season, Bill will ask us to pause in wonder, to contemplate the mystery of conscious life, to reflect upon the marvelous structure of the universe, to try to comprehend the intelligence manifested in nature, to deeply observe life. In other words, to think about living in awe.

During the service we will welcome everyone who wishes to officially join Channing Memorial Church in a new member signing ceremony.

Sunday, December 22: Rev. John H. Nichols

Filling in the Manger

The Christmas story we hold dear in our thoughts and memories is what we want and need it to be. Technically it has two authors — Matthew and Luke — but many of us have crafted the story to be the news we most need to hear. “Be not afraid.!”   This sermon is part of my recently published book, which will be on sale for $19.99 which can be purchased at the coffee hour.

Known as an inspiring preacher, Dr. John Hay Nichols is now Minister Emeritus of the Unitarian Universalist Society of Wellesley Hills, Massachusetts, where he served as senior minister for twenty-three years. He also served as interim minister for ten other congregations (including Channing) in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and New York.

Tuesday, Dec. 24, 5:00pm: Christmas Eve: A Moment of Magic    

Rev. William Zelazny, the Channing Choir and Guests

The sanctuary is decorated, the candles are lit.  Come to a Christmas Eve Celebration for adults and children with the Channing Choir, guest musicians, members of Channing Church and Rev. Zelazny with carol singing, choral anthems, instrumental music, and scripture and secular readings, concluding with the traditional lighting of candles and singing Silent Night in the darkened sanctuary.  Come, bring family and friends for the our very special Christmas Eve service.

Sunday, December 29: Service under construction – the Worship Committee is putting together a “Moth”- like (think NPR’s Moth Radio Hour) Sunday’s service.  Like the Moth Radio Hour, this will be a theme-based service.   The theme, in recognition of the new year starting in a few days, is Renewal.

The Worship Committee is looking for several people who wish to tell a story – personal or published — or do a reading of a poem or essay – personally composed or from a published source – that illustrates renewal.  Want to be part of it?   Contact Rev. Bill (401-846-0643 or minister@channingchurch.org) by December 18 to discuss your idea.  Let your creative or theatrical self shine out!