Sunday, May 3, 2020

Those who stand at the threshold of life always waiting for the right time to change are like the person who stands at the bank of a river waiting for the water to pass so they can cross on dry land. – Joseph B. Wirthlin

This Sunday, Cricket is going to lead a UU History service that will focus on those who crossed thresholds.

We are forgoing meeting in person during the coronavirus epidemic. We share music, readings, and hymns, on our usual presentation slides, have a story and a talk, and share joys and sorrows, as well as a virtual “coffee hour” discussion, starting at 10:30, with the service at 11. If you prefer not to be seen, video is optional. If you would like to participate, please email westforkuu@gmail.com for details and a link, or for help with using Skype.

If you are a regular attendee, we have added you to our Google Group if we had an email address. If you have not gotten a group email already, please email westforkuu@gmail.com so that we can add you to the group, which we will be using for staying in touch with each other during this time. Public announcements will continue to be posted here on the website and on our Facebook page and Twitter account, as usual.


Email westforkuu@gmail.com or use our contact form for more information or write to us at PO Box 523, Clarksburg WV 26302

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Welcome:

Good morning and welcome to West Fork Unitarian Universalists. I’m Cricket and I feel blessed to serve this congregation as a lay leader. I’m glad to see all of you here today.

Thank you for joining us.

Let us use the prelude for centering. We are about to enter sacred time. We are about to make this time and this place sacred by our presence and intention.

Please silence your phones… and as you do so, I invite us also to turn down the volume on our fears; to remove our masks; and to loosen the armor around our hearts.

Breathe.

Let go of the expectations placed on you by others—and those they taught you to place on yourself.

Drop the guilt and the shame, not to shirk accountability, but in honest expectation of the possibility of forgiveness.

Let go of the thing you said the other day. Let go of the thing you dread next week. Be here, in this moment. Breathe, here.

Prelude: 

Opening Words:  Surrender to This Life by Gretchen Haley

Chalice Lighting: April 2020 – Global Chalice Lighting

Welcome Song: Come, Come Whoever you are

Principles: There are Seven Principles which Unitarian Universalist Congregations affirm and promote

Continue reading

Sunday, March 1, 2020: Dissent, Heresy, and Toleration

Dissenter of Sidmouth

Tolerance is a social rather than a religious virtue. A broad-minded view of the private belief of others undoubtedly makes for the happiness of society; but it is an attitude impossible for those whose personal religion is strong. For if we know that we have found the key and guiding principle of Life, we cannot allow our friends to flounder blindly in the darkness.

— Steven Runciman, The Medieval Manichee: A Study of the Christian Dualist Heresy

Unitarianism and Universalism were both born in heresy, challenges to the beliefs and mores of the world around them. This Sunday Robert Helfer will discuss some aspects of that heretical history.

Join us for Worship:

Our services are Sundays at 11 a.m.  at the Progressive Women’s Association Event Center, 305 Washington Ave. in downtown Clarksburg, behind the Courthouse. There are classes for children and adults 10 to 10:45 am, and a coffee gathering before the service. More about us.

Meeting for Business: Our congregational meetings for business are on the First Sunday of each month after the service. There are no agenda items for next Sunday so far. If you would like to know more, come at 10 for questions and discussion. More information here.

Classes and worship are replaced by Spiritual Outings on the first Sunday of each month during the summer, with brief worship, a potluck picnic, and outdoor activities. The schedule is in the sidebar.

We would love to have you come worship with us.

Children are welcome.  There is childcare and an activity for young children during the service.

The building is wheelchair accessible, with an accessible restroom.

Map

The schedule for the current adult religious education class is here.

Email westforkuu@gmail.com or use our contact form for more information

or write to us at PO Box 523, Clarksburg WV 26302

Sunday, February 16, 2020: The Kingdom of God

Some time ago, in a conversation with Wes Jackson in which we were laboring to define the causes of the modern ruination of farmland, we finally got around to the money economy. I said that an economy based on energy would be more benign because it would be more comprehensive.
Wes would not agree. “An energy economy still wouldn’t be comprehensive enough.”
“Well,” I said, “then what kind of economy would be comprehensive enough?”
He hesitated a moment, and then, grinning, said, “The Kingdom of God.”
— Wendell Berry, “Two Economies”

Our lives are embedded in a complex web of interconnections, some of which we can understand and some of which we cannot, some of which we cannot even know. Is that the Kingdom of God? Robert Helfer will lead this service.

Join us for Worship:

Our services are Sundays at 11 a.m.  at the Progressive Women’s Association Event Center, 305 Washington Ave. in downtown Clarksburg, behind the Courthouse. There are classes for children and adults 10 to 10:45 am, and a coffee gathering before the service. More about us.

Classes and worship are replaced by Spiritual Outings on the first Sunday of each month during the summer, with brief worship, a potluck picnic, and outdoor activities. The schedule is in the sidebar.

We would love to have you come worship with us.

Children are welcome.  There is childcare and an activity for young children during the service.

The building is wheelchair accessible, with an accessible restroom.

Map

The schedule for the current adult religious education class is here.

Email westforkuu@gmail.com or use our contact form for more information

or write to us at PO Box 523, Clarksburg WV 26302

Sunday, January 19, 2020: Food Rules

Most often the people in Berlevaag during the course of a good meal would come to feel a little heavy. Tonight it was not so. The convives grew lighter in weight and lighter of heart the more they ate and drank. They no longer needed to remind themselves of their vow. It was, they realized, when man has not only altogether forgotten but has firmly renounced all ideas of food and drink that he eats and drinks in the right spirit.
— Isak Dinesen (Karen Blixen), “Babette’s Feast”

We’ve all got to eat, if only for our bodies’ sake. But can eating nourish our spirits as well as our bodies? Do we need rules? What rules? This Sunday Robert Helfer will ponder how eating can feed our spirits.

Join us for Worship:

Our services are Sundays at 11 a.m.  at the Progressive Women’s Association Event Center, 305 Washington Ave. in downtown Clarksburg, behind the Courthouse. There are classes for children and adults 10 to 10:45 am, and a coffee gathering before the service. More about us.

Classes and worship are replaced by Spiritual Outings on the first Sunday of each month during the summer, with brief worship, a potluck picnic, and outdoor activities. The schedule is in the sidebar.

We would love to have you come worship with us.

Children are welcome.  There is childcare and an activity for young children during the service.

The building is wheelchair accessible, with an accessible restroom.

Map

The schedule for the current adult religious education class is here.

Email westforkuu@gmail.com or use our contact form for more information

or write to us at PO Box 523, Clarksburg WV 26302

Sunday, January 12, 2020: Enlightment Now

Part of working for equity and justice is to try and make more of life’s goodnesses available to everyone. Over time, if we squelch and reject those goods, not only is life miserable for us, we make it really difficult for us to participate in society, be friends or coworkers, love anyone, or keep up our efforts to make a more equitable and just society that’s worthwhile and full of blessings for every one. We’re not working to make us all more equally suffering. If that’s our notion of justice, it is a spirit-destroying one, and all we must do is increase the misery of folks in this world.

Rev. Naomi King

The news is mostly gloom and doom, and it is easy to believe the world is going to hell in a handbasket. Lisa deGruyter has been reading Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress and will share some thoughts on humanism, Buddhism, both kinds of Enlightenment, and reasons for optimism.

Join us for Worship:

Our services are Sundays at 11 a.m.  at the Progressive Women’s Association Event Center, 305 Washington Ave. in downtown Clarksburg, behind the Courthouse. There are classes for children and adults 10 to 10:45 am, and a coffee gathering before the service. More about us.

Classes and worship are replaced by Spiritual Outings on the first Sunday of each month during the summer, with brief worship, a potluck picnic, and outdoor activities. The schedule is in the sidebar.

We would love to have you come worship with us.

Children are welcome.  There is childcare and an activity for young children during the service.

The building is wheelchair accessible, with an accessible restroom.

Map

The schedule for the current adult religious education class is here.

Email westforkuu@gmail.com or use our contact form for more information

or write to us at PO Box 523, Clarksburg WV 26302

Sunday, December 15, 2019: Redemptive Art

Image of a colorfully painted leaf, colored in the style of V. Kandinsky

Niggle was a painter. … He had a number of pictures on hand; most of them were too large and ambitious for his skill. He was the sort of painter who can paint leaves better than trees. He used to spend a long time on a single leaf, trying to catch its shape, and its sheen, and the glistening of dewdrops on its edges. Yet he wanted to paint a whole tree, with all of its leaves in the same style, and all of them different.

— J.R.R. Tolkien, “Leaf by Niggle”

This Sunday we will explore some aspects of art and redemption. Robert Helfer will lead the service.

Join us for Worship:

Our services are Sundays at 11 a.m.  at the Progressive Women’s Association Event Center, 305 Washington Ave. in downtown Clarksburg, behind the Courthouse. There are classes for children and adults 10 to 10:45 am, and a coffee gathering before the service. More about us.

Classes and worship are replaced by Spiritual Outings on the first Sunday of each month during the summer, with brief worship, a potluck picnic, and outdoor activities. The schedule is in the sidebar.

We would love to have you come worship with us.

Children are welcome.  There is childcare and an activity for young children during the service.

The building is wheelchair accessible, with an accessible restroom.

Map

The schedule for the current adult religious education class is here.

Email westforkuu@gmail.com or use our contact form for more information

or write to us at PO Box 523, Clarksburg WV 26302

Sunday, December 8, 2019: Quillen Shinn’s Travels

October’s theme was “Belonging.” Sometimes, when most people around us seem to believe differently, we feel we don’t belong. Unitarian Universalist seems like a new and different belief here, now – but for a century and more, Universalism was alive and well in our area, rising from the beliefs of some of our earliest settlers.  Rev. Quillen Shinn, born and raised in Bingamon, was a Universalist minister and well-traveled missionary, is known as the “St. Paul of the Universalist Church.” He has been credited with starting at least 40 churches and inspiring nearly 30 persons to enter the ministry. He also founded the Ferry Beach UU camp and conference center in Maine.

Lisa deGruyter will talk about Rev. Shinn and early Universalism in Harrison Co. – and we will sing the Quillen Shinn song which is still sung by campers at Ferry Beach.

[Postponed from October 26]

Join us for Worship:

Our services are Sundays at 11 a.m.  at the Progressive Women’s Association Event Center, 305 Washington Ave. in downtown Clarksburg, behind the Courthouse. There are classes for children and adults 10 to 10:45 am, and a coffee gathering before the service. More about us.

Classes and worship are replaced by Spiritual Outings on the first Sunday of each month during the summer, with brief worship, a potluck picnic, and outdoor activities. The schedule is in the sidebar.

We would love to have you come worship with us.

Children are welcome.  There is childcare and an activity for young children during the service.

The building is wheelchair accessible, with an accessible restroom.

Map

The schedule for the current adult religious education class is here.

Email westforkuu@gmail.com or use our contact form for more information

or write to us at PO Box 523, Clarksburg WV 26302

Sunday, October 27, 2019: Quillen Shinn’s Travels

This month’s theme is “Belonging.” Sometimes, when most people around us seem to believe differently, we feel we don’t belong. Unitarian Universalist seems like a new and different belief here, now – but for a century and more, Universalism was alive and well in our area, rising from the beliefs of some of our earliest settlers.  Rev. Quillen Shinn, born and raised in Bingamon, was a Universalist minister and well-traveled missionary, is known as the “St. Paul of the Universalist Church.” He has been credited with starting at least 40 churches and inspiring nearly 30 persons to enter the ministry. He also founded the Ferry Beach UU camp and conference center in Maine.

Lisa deGruyter will talk about Rev. Shinn and early Universalism in Harrison Co. – and we will sing the Quillen Shinn song which is still sung by campers at Ferry Beach.

Join us for Worship:

Our services are Sundays at 11 a.m.  at the Progressive Women’s Association Event Center, 305 Washington Ave. in downtown Clarksburg, behind the Courthouse. There are classes for children and adults 10 to 10:45 am, and a coffee gathering before the service. More about us.

Classes and worship are replaced by Spiritual Outings on the first Sunday of each month during the summer, with brief worship, a potluck picnic, and outdoor activities. The schedule is in the sidebar.

We would love to have you come worship with us.

Children are welcome.  There is childcare and an activity for young children during the service.

The building is wheelchair accessible, with an accessible restroom.

Map

The schedule for the current adult religious education class is here.

Email westforkuu@gmail.com or use our contact form for more information

or write to us at PO Box 523, Clarksburg WV 26302

Sunday, October 20, 2019: To Every Purpose

Autumn Crocus

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
— Ecclesiastes, 3:1

This Sunday we will talk about those times of transition when one season becomes another. Robert Helfer will lead the service.

Join us for Worship:

Our services are Sundays at 11 a.m.  at the Progressive Women’s Association Event Center, 305 Washington Ave. in downtown Clarksburg, behind the Courthouse. There are classes for children and adults 10 to 10:45 am, and a coffee gathering before the service. More about us.

Classes and worship are replaced by Spiritual Outings on the first Sunday of each month during the summer, with brief worship, a potluck picnic, and outdoor activities. The schedule is in the sidebar.

We would love to have you come worship with us.

Children are welcome.  There is childcare and an activity for young children during the service.

The building is wheelchair accessible, with an accessible restroom.

Map

The schedule for the current adult religious education class is here.

Email westforkuu@gmail.com or use our contact form for more information

or write to us at PO Box 523, Clarksburg WV 26302