Category Archives: Sermons

Reinventing the Sacred

In his 2008 book Reinventing the Sacred, complexity theorist Stuart A. Kauffman tells an apocryphal story of the invention of the tractor. Portable engines had been invented for the purpose of powering farm machinery in the early 1800s. The question … Continue reading

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White Supremacy Teach-In

During last year’s presidential campaign there was an almost constant outcry from white conservative and working class voters who were tired of being called racist. They were especially tired of progressive white people on the coasts and in large cities … Continue reading

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Surrender: A Path to Power

Our ministry theme for March is surrender. In reviewing my past sermons on this theme, I notice a tendency in me—and not only in me, but among Unitarian Universalists and liberal religious people in general, among at least some of … Continue reading

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Where the Wood Drake Rests Not: Reflections on Mental Health Ministry

Visible and Speakable Our congregation has conducted a Mental Health Ministry for the last six or seven years. Sharon Gresk was the original visionary behind this ministry. She remains one of our in-house experts on offering pastoral support to people … Continue reading

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Something My Grandfather Seemed to Know About Race and Class

I want to share with you some stories about my father’s father, Stanley J. Pawelek. Grandad Pawelek seemed to know something about race and class that feels extraordinarily important for this moment in American history. He was the oldest of nine … Continue reading

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Joyful is the Dark

We are in the dark season. The sun hangs low in New England’s southern sky, arching quickly along the horizon through the course of each short December day. A few brown leaves still cling to branches on otherwise barren trees. … Continue reading

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Living Principles

In my sermon following the election of Donald Trump as United States President, I said “the church is not serving you fully if it is not sending you forth into the world to live your principles proudly, resolutely, urgently, lovingly.” … Continue reading

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Sending Forth (Six Reflections on the 2016 United States Presidential Election)

Reaching Out to Those with Whom You Disagree Last Sunday I stood in this pulpit and spoke of the way the United States presidential campaign had been traumatic to people all across the political spectrum—how so many different groups of … Continue reading

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Given Inches, I Take Yards

“I know my soul will unfurl its wings”[1]—words from Unitarian Universalist minister, Mary Grigolia. As I sing these words I conjure an image of me rising up, me soaring, me flying, me pursuing my passions, my calling, my dreams; and … Continue reading

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Food Revolution

This sermon is about food and diet. That’s not exactly a trigger warning, but the 15 people who purchased this sermon at last year’s goods and services auction and asked me to preach on the rationale for veganism—or plant-based diets—probably … Continue reading

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