2014-10-02 Service

2 10 2014

First Unitarian Universalist Congregation, Second Life (FUUCSL)

Thursday, October 2, 2014

6:30PM SL Time (Pacific Standard Time)

Leading the service: Tee Auster



“Church is a place where you get to practice what it means to be human.”

— James Luther Adams



Welcome to the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Second Life.

An Order of Service is available by saying “oos” in chat.


For visitors, a special welcome.

If you are not familiar with Unitarian Universalism (“UU”),

a single service is not enough

to experience the diversity of ideas and styles of interaction that we offer,

either here in SL or in RL.  Please come again.

You might also wish to look at UUA.org. or consider joining the group Unitarian Universalists of SL to receive regular announcements.

Also please check out fuucsl.org, our web site.

We are always looking for members of our community who wish to get more involved.

If you would like to try your hand at leading a service, please contact a member of the Leadership Group.

Our names are available in the notecard dispenser

in the welcome area.

Please join us after the service for dancing and conversation –  a FUCCSL tradition!

Are there any other announcements?


~Lighting the Chalice~


For some, the chalice cup is a communion cup, freely offered to all who would seek the greater Truth.

Others see the circle of fellowship in its embracing sides. The sacred hoop of its rim, the ambient energy cradled in its basin, the abiding, grounded strength of its pedestal:

may all be lit by the fire of spiritual integrity;

so too may we each be bathed

in the glow of our shared Truth, multifaceted and radiant.

-Martha Kirby Capo


The Chalice is now lit.

~Joys and Concerns~

Let us prepare our hearts to receive the joys and concerns,

hopes and sorrows, fears and dreams of one another.

If there is something that has recently happened to you, happy or sad,

and you would like to share it with us, now is the time.

We invite you to share your joys and concerns in chat, when you are ready.


Group Response at the end of Joys and Concerns

“May we be held in the heart of love.”


~Principles and Beliefs~

Tonights we reflect on the Third Principal…

Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations.


“Spiritual growth isn’t about a vertical ascent to heaven but about growth in every dimension at once.

It’s spirituality in 3-D. Growth in spirit doesn’t measure one’s proximity to a God above, but rather the spaciousness of one’s own soul—its volume, its capacity, its size.

“We need souls that can take in the world in all its complexity and diversity, yet still maintain our integrity.

And we need souls that can love and be in relationship with all of this complexity. Instead of flight or flight, we need a spiritual posture of embrace.”

Rev. Rob Hardies, All Souls Church Unitarian, Washington, DC



A freewill offering is a sacrament of a free Church.

This fellowship is supported by the voluntary generosity of all who join with us.

There is an offering plate in the pool in front of us.

Please be generous in support of this UU fellowship.



One of my favorite blogs on UUWorld.org is the The Interdependent Web,  the UU World’s weekly guide to Unitarian Universalist blogs edited by the Rev. Heather Christensen.


Christensen grew up in a Plymouth Brethren meeting, was ordained in the Presbyterian Church (USA), and served churches in Ohio, and is now “immensely grateful for Unitarian Universalism.”


She is a  member of the Anchorage, Alaska, UU Fellow­ship and she blogs at nagoonberry.


The August 1st blog focused on Life in American Christendom, remembers Margot Adler and is a patchwork quilt of sorts.


Life in American Christendom

The Rev. Dawn Cooley makes a provocative statement about the relationship between Unitarian Universalism and Christianity.

Unitarian Universalism may or may not be a Christian denomination, depending on who you ask. But we are a part of Christendom, because we have not disassociated ourselves from Christianity. Nor should we—it is an important part of where we come from and who we are today, and, I suspect, an important part of where we are going. (The Lively Tradition, July 30)

The Rev. Dr. David Breeden suggests that UUs not worry about reinventing Christianity, but rather focus on being a big tent, in which each congregation, and each individual “brews” their own faith.

[Mainstream] Christian denominations are scrambling to survive. I don’t doubt that they will do a fine job of brewing the new Christianity. A much better job than can Unitarian Universalism, except in very specific locations and boutiques. . . . I think the future of Unitarian Universalism lies in micro-breweries. Boutique congregations, each with a recipe of their own. (Quest for Meaning, July 31)

Tina Porter wonders if some Christians “opt out” of the concept of grace.

(Definition: Grace is God’s unmerited favor. It is kindness from God we don’t deserve. There is nothing we have done, nor can ever do to earn this favor.

It is a gift from God. Grace is divine assistance given to humans for their regeneration (rebirth) or sanctification;

a virtue coming from God; a state of sanctification enjoyed through divine favor.)

Here’s my dilemma about the concept of grace: . . . . if grace is the gift we did not earn and do not deserve,

wouldn’t that, in essence, make us all more tender-hearted toward those in need of that unearned gift?

(Long Thoughts, July 31)


Co-existing with fundamentalist religion

Responding to Operation Save America’s harassment of a UU congregation in New Orleans,

the Rev. Tom Schade wonders how progressive and fundamentalist religions can exist together in the same community.

Can the Tolerant and the Intolerant Co-exist?

Yes, but only if the Tolerant have the power to preserve the structural arrangements which protect them.

It is a question, ultimately, of power. (The Lively Tradition, July 29)

The Rev. Dr. Cynthia Landrum believes that the Operation Save America incident was, indeed, “religious terrorism.”

Terrorism is defined as “the use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims.” . . . .

This act in Louisiana didn’t include violence. So why is it terrorism? Because it’s done by a terrorist group that has included violence in the past. (The Lively Tradition, July 30)


Thank you, Margot Adler

Thalassa expresses her gratitude for the work of Margot Adler, who died this summer.

Margot Adler was my impetus to take the idea of being Pagan seriously.

Not just to take myself seriously, but to demand (nicely, of course) that I should expect my religious beliefs to be taken seriously, regardless of how unorthodox they might seem to others.

Margot Adler is the reason that I never thought that I had to live “in the broom closet.” (Musings of a Kitchen Witch, July 29)

Patrick Murfin gives an overview of Margot Adler’s life.

Despite her status as a priestess, Adler never considered herself as a witch or had a particular interest in magic.

“Most people, when they think of witches and witchcraft, think of power and magical abilities,” she told a reporter three years ago.

“I’m not a particularly occult-oriented person. I’m not into astrology. I’ve never felt I had magical abilities.”

Instead, Adler focused on the power of ritual to connect a community and on the spiritual connection to the whole natural world. (Heretic, Rebel, a Thing to Flout, July 29)

Being all over the place with this one, what would you like to address?


Although UU roots are heavily Christian based, is this where were are headed according to Cooley. Is this where we are going?


Where do the spiritual but not religious ones fit into this vision?


How or can we coexist with those holding a fundamentalist approach to any religion?


Do we hold an equivalent to to concept of grace?




A reading from “Why Universalism?”  by the Rev. Dr. Carl Gregg

So, “Why Universalism?” Well, whereas Unitarianism has sometimes lead down a road to extreme Emersonian individualism (of caring mostly about one’s own isolated spirituality),

the Universalism calls us out of ourselves and into the world to love the hell out of this world—

into a world filled with far too much hell that desperately needs the life-saving message that we are part of one another, part one human family.


~Closing Words and Extinguishing the Chalice~

With faith to face our challenges,

With love that casts out fear,

With hope to trust tomorrow,

We accept this day as the gift it is —

A reason for rejoicing.

-Gary Kowalski


May we go forward into this week with peace, love and understanding.