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Likeradar's avatar

What can I expect at a Unitarian Universalist service?

Asked by Likeradar (19575points) May 20th, 2009

I’m not a church person, being a mostly non-practicing Jew and all. However, there’s a UU church (temple?) on my block that I’ve become increasingly intrigued by. I’m kinda exploring my own spirituality and stuff. They seem friendly, with a rainbow flag flying and there seems to be a lot of people my age going in and out. There will be a sermon on science and religion this weekend, and I’m thinking about checking it out just to see if I get anything out of it.

I’m wondering what can I expect at a UU service? I know every church is different, even within denominations, by the way.

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16 Answers

augustlan's avatar

From what I remember:

A) A welcoming attitude to people of all faiths and to those of no faith at all.
B) A very bare-bones type of church, with little to no ornamentation.
C) Practical sermons.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

It definitely won’t be like a typical church outing. They’re much more about loving everyone, not harming anyone if it can be avoided, and gentleness in general.

Edit: There’s still a debate on whether or not to call them a religion, too. Because that’s not what they’re about, but they still accept people who choose to believe in some kind of higher power.

Blondesjon's avatar

A huge homosexual crowd.

i’ve been to a wedding at one…nuff said

Likeradar's avatar

@Blondesjon That’s what I figured, and actually one thing that interests me about them. They have a rainbow flag flying, and a huge banner that reads “civil marriage is a civil right” on their building. Not too common for a church!

hungryhungryhortence's avatar

From what I remember:
Mostly genuine warm, educated and compassionate people interested in outreaching. Good lectures on many subjects such as science, art, politics, world spiritualism.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

there is one locally here, and I have considered going, but I keep putting it off. This might be the lever that gets me over there.

susanc's avatar

At the UU church, besides the nice things you see listed above, you will find intense self-regard and political correctness. Do not, repeat do not make a UU person angry, because they don’t know they’re capable of not-nice emotions and will not know how to handle them. You may very well also find that in spite of the decor being relatively plain, it will also be expensive, and you will not find that the UU community has programs geared toward helping people outside their own group.
Based on a sample of one congregation.

nikipedia's avatar

I was raised Unitarian Universalist and have been to services at several different churches.

The service will probably start with some music, followed by a series of readings, stories, and more music with one longer speaker giving a sermon of about 20–30 minutes. At one point, there will be an offertory when a basket is passed around for donations. You are not obligated to give and are welcome to simply pass the basket to your neighbor. Some songs will be for the entire congregation to sing, and these will be underlined or starred in your order of service. You don’t have to sing if you’re uncomfortable, but for these, you should stand with the rest of the congregation.

At the end of the service, there will probably be more music as you leave, and most likely coffee and conversation for newcomers.

As far as the sermon goes, it could be on anything. I have heard sermons about astrophysics, global economic planning, Jesus, and everything in between.

augustlan's avatar

@Likeradar If you go, will you report back? I’d be interested in hearing about your experiences.

_bob's avatar

I don’t know, but it sounds comprehensive.

Crusader's avatar

I attended one in my youth, also. 30 years ago it was more of a liberal Christian movement for the dissaffected and uncertain, with some genuine compassion and outreach for all, but uncommited products of the 60’s, now it is wholly politicized extreme feminist and homosexual-oriented.

Though, in truth I never quite felt completely comfortable with the messege, even in my youth…But is was better than nothing, a degree of Christ-based fellowship. Yet, for modern UU it is merely Opposition to social conservatives, and politically motivated pseudo-synagogue.

casheroo's avatar

I have attended quite a few UU services. I find them very non-invasive religion wise, which I enjoyed. Very welcoming, and accepting. It was a lovely experience.

Likeradar's avatar

Thanks for the answers!

@augustlan Will do.

SuperMouse's avatar

I have been to a couple of UU services. I decided it wasn’t for me because I like at least a little God in my religion.

Blondesjon's avatar

@SuperMouse…“I like at least a little God in my religion.”

Is that an original Super Mouse quote and if it is may I have permission to use it?

SuperMouse's avatar

Not to sound immodest or anything, but yes it is a Super Mouse original and absolutely you have permission to use it! I am flattered!

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