UU Church of Annapolis Podcast
Sermons by the ministers and guests at UUCA -Living boldly and compassionately in Annapolis, MD for over 60 years!

One can live in diversity but not experience pluralism; it has to be brought forward by the community's practices of respect, tolerance, and curiosity. One benefit of experiencing and engaging in religious pluralism is the experience of being “religious inter-religiously.” Come hear Rev. Anastassia share more about what this means and how you can practice it too. 

(Delivered 9/17/2023)

Direct download: Religious_Pluralism_Interfaith_Dialogue.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 7:31am EDT

Each year, UUCA invites you to bring a small container of water to partake in our Water Communion ritual as a sign of unity.

Delivered: Sunday September 10, 2023

Direct download: Many_Sources_and_the_Annual_Water_Communion.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:11pm EDT

Join us this Sunday to learn about our ongoing relationship with the Unitarian Universalist Association, its annual meeting, and how you can get more involved in their National issues.

Delivered Sunday, September 3, 2023

Direct download: UUA_General_Assembly.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 7:54pm EDT

In this service, you will learn what you can do to end racism, microaggressions, and behaviors that keep us from beloved community.

(Delivered: Sunday, August 27, 2023)

Direct download: Commemorate_Educate_Activate.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 3:44pm EDT

Join Rev. John as he discusses the monthly themes for the upcoming church year and how you might engage with them for your spiritual growth.

Direct download: This_Church__Year.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:03am EDT

The period between 1945 to 1968 profoundly shaped the American landscape we see today. I am so intrigued by these 20+ years and the way we still wrestle with the same issues. Join me today as I catch you up on some of my insights and inspirations during my time away.

Delivered: Sunday, August 13, 2023

Direct download: Chaos_or_Community_Oppenheimer_Dr_King_and_Barbie.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 4:17pm EDT

In her poem, Summer Day, the poet-narrator asks, “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” Come let us reflect on both how Mary Oliver answered this question, and reflect on how we each might answer.

Delivered Sunday, August 6, 2023

Direct download: Wild_and_Precious_Life.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:27pm EDT

Rev. Anastassia finds that William Stafford's poem "A Ritual To Read to One Another" provides valuable reminders that could well guide congregational communities. Let's hear what it says, and take it to heart.
Delivered: Sunday July 30, 2023

Direct download: A_Ritual_Before_We_Forget.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 7:04am EDT

Our ancestors -- of blood, family, faith, and community -- often share life lessons and values with us. These gifts teach us about the world and hopefully assist us in surviving and thriving. In dialogue with Philip Booth's First Lesson, let us consider some of these lessons ourselves.

Delivered July 23, 2023

Direct download: From_Their_Hands.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 9:13pm EDT

"Let us measure success by how many of us can say: I am living a life I don’t regret. A life that will resonate with my ancestors"    

-adrienne maree brown


Join us for a reflection on heavy suitcases, surprise turning points, and attending to the complexity of our times with love and resilience.


Matt is a musician and traveling worship leader who has led hundreds of services for UU congregations across the country. He has a degree in hand drumming and serves as Director of Community Life for Sanctuary Boston. This is a multi-generational service.

Delivered: Sunday, July 16, 2023

Direct download: Lessons_for_Future_Ancestors.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:28am EDT

All of us have experienced moments or periods of lonliness, pain, or loss. We also know, therefore, the wonder and power of being truly welcomed. Part of our purpose of being a community at UUCA is to welcome each other, sometimes in small ways and sometimes in large ways. Come be welcomed, and hear Rev. Anastassia share how we can welcome again and again.

(Delivered: Sunday July 9, 2023)

Direct download: Come_Yet_Again_Come_to_Your_Place_of_Welcome.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:28pm EDT

Poetry is More Than a Spiritual Luxury: The prophetic poet Audre Lorde in her 1985 essay reminds us that "poetry is not a luxury" in a world that desperately and insistently needs liberation. Come hear Rev. Anastassia share more of Lorde's wisdom and about how poetry can be a meaningful companion to us in our spiritual work and in our quest for liberation. Music by Josh Long. Delivered: 7/02/23

Direct download: Poetry_is_Not_a_Spiritual_Luxury.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:19pm EDT

The climate crisis has become painfully real after wildfire smoke from Canada covered the east coast. There are some who believe that it is too late to do anything about the ecological emergency. People of faith are called to have a different response. Climate justice is not solely about saving the environment but rather it is about creating something new for the entire web of existence. Joshua Long, Congregational Organizer for Interfaith Power & Light AND our Director of Music ensembles will help us explore the difficult landscape of climate change.

Direct download: Hope_Through_the_Smoke.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 7:35pm EDT

In this sermon, Rev. John tells the story of Juneteenth and shares what reparations might look like in Anne Arundel County and all of Maryland.

(Delivered: Sunday June 18, 2023)

Direct download: Juneteenth_Fathers_day_and_Reparations.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 9:25pm EDT

Since the Stonewall Riots, we Americans have both confronted and celebrated the reality that life is not nearly as simple or set as we had once held it to be. We aren't at the end of this journey of unfolding, emerging, becoming, and fully living, but we know that the world is queerer in every sense of the word than we once thought it to be. Come let us consider how this shift is one that reflects our faith and points to liberation.

Direct download: Its_a_Queer_World_After_All.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 8:08pm EDT

In this message Rev. John helps us understand a post-modern perspective on what ‘God’s will’ and ‘blessings’ mean in Islam, Judaism, and Christianity.
(Delivered Sunday May 29, 2023)
Direct download: Insha_Allah_Gods_Will_and_Bless_You.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 9:20pm EDT

On this very special Mother's Day, join Rev. as he examines the Civil War, Julia Howe, Lincoln, Douglass, religion and the human quest for freedom; and how authenticity can only be achieved through pain and suffering.

(Delivered: May 14, 2023)

Direct download: Authenticity_Freedom_Suffering_and_Pain.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:45pm EDT

Our most deeply centered and understood theology comes in those moments of greatest challenge. In short, they emerge from our own authentic life experiences. Come hear what Rev. Anastassia Zinke learned about surrender, love, and not needing to be enough.

(Deivered Sunday May 7, 2023

Direct download: Surrendering_on_the_Doorstep_of_Grace.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 5:30pm EDT

Remember when Rev Jeremiah Wright criticized America in his sermon creating a rift between he and Obama? In this sermon on authenticity, I will look again at what Rev. Wright damned in America and offer some insights and suggestions on what White-allyship really means. This sermon is dedicated to Darrel Nash a long time antiracism advocate at UUCA.

(Delivered April 30, 2023)

Direct download: Jeremiah_Wright_Revisited_with_Reverend_John_T._Crestwell_and_Mickey_Goldberg.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:57pm EDT

Quite often our failure to be authentic with others stems not from a lack of desire, or an overwhelming fear of vulnerability, but from the fact that we lack authenticity with our very selves. Connecting with others requires us to stay connected with ourselves: and not just with our mental selves—as most schools and workplaces would have it—but with our somas, or whole selves. Join UUCA member and therapist Jessie Rhines for a discussion of the yogic model of The Koshas. Come prepared for a personal practice, among sacred communities.

Direct download: A_Conversation_with_Jessie_Rhines_A_Tool_for_Authenticity_with_Ourselves.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:14am EDT

When vulnerability is the first thing we look for in others and the last thing we want to show, how do we find each other? Join guest minister Rev. Christin Green for an exploration of grace, peace, vulnerability, and authenticity. (Delivered 4/16/23)

Direct download: Grace_and_Peace.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 5:56pm EDT

The biblical story of the Tower of Babel in essence says God divided humankind by preventing us from understanding each other. In this sermon Rev. John will share his interpretation of the story and how it reveals what happens when human communication breaks down, using the tools of the brilliant psychologist Marshall Rosenberg.  This was auction sermon paid for by Mickey Goldberg.
(Sermon delivered on April 2,2023)
Direct download: Tower_of_Babel.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 9:09am EDT

American religion is going through a rapid change. How can we as Unitarian Universalists engage with that change and deepen our spiritual lives? In this service, we explore how being radically welcoming could actually change us and our world. Rev. Dr. John Morehouse is the Senior Minister of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Westport, CT. Music by Rob Redei and the UUCA choir. (Delivered Sunday, March26,2023)

Direct download: Widening_he_Circle_With_a_More_Meaningful_Contribution.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:03pm EDT

Generosity is one of the core practices proposed by our UUA's Article II Study Commission, and yet in comparison to those in other faith traditions, UUs tend to be less financially generous. In contrast, Rev. Anastassia found that being a UU congregant and leader fostered her practices of generosity within and beyond our faith. Let us consider what it means to be a generous people. Music by Joshua Long and the UUCA worship ensemble. (Delivered 3/19/23)

Direct download: The_Generosity_Path.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 8:44pm EDT

Today we celebrate and give thanks for all that we are to each other. And we will address areas of growth for our congregation. There will be a celebration luncheon after service. Music by Rob Redei and the UUCA choir. (Delivered March 5, 2023)

Direct download: State_of_Our_Union_Sermon_March_5_2023.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 7:31pm EDT

The past is gone. We've come back from the pandemic successfully.  We have a new embodiment of what our beloved community can be.  Let's celebrate community and abundance together.  Sermon by Rev. John T. Crestwell, Jr.  Delivered on Sunday, February 26th, 2023. 

Direct download: Back_to_the_Future.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 3:32pm EDT

Rev. Dr. Forrest Church described religion as "our human response to the dual reality of being alive and having to die." How can we reconcile these dual realities, and what is the spiritual involved in preparing for death? Led by Rev. Anastassia, with music by Josh Long and the Worship Ensemble. Delivered on Sunday, February 19th, 2023.

Direct download: Being_Alive.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:04am EDT

Reconciliation is not something taken lightly, in fact, just considering it is spiritual work. What is the pre-work, the prayerful work, that informs whether and how to move towards reconciliation? Led by Rev. Anastassia, with music by Rob Redei and the UUCA Choir. Delivered Sunday, February 12th, 2023.

Direct download: Feb_12.mp3
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Direct download: Truth_and_Reconciliation.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 3:43pm EDT

Being able to trust and experiencing trust is fundamental to human flourishing, collaborative efforts, and to creative and generative efforts. Let's consider what it is to trust, why it is necessary, and how we can be more trusting and trustworthy. Rev. Anastassia preaching with music by Rob Redei and our UUCA choir. Delivered Sunday, January 29th, 2023.
Direct download: Fundamentals_of_Truth.mp3
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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. sought nonviolent means to make democracy work. Given what happened to us on January 6 and the violent rhetoric in our society, let’s talk about why we can achieve more through peaceful protest. Sermon given by Rev. John T. Crestwell, Jr.  Music by Rob Redei and the UUCA Choir. Delivered Sunday January 15, 2023.

Direct download: MLK_Day_Service.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:52pm EDT

Our new year begins at the beginning of winter. Earth lies fallow and animals rest in their borrows or nests as they recover from the energy of the fall Harvest time. Collectively we trust that this will lead to a new or renewed life come Spring. How is this season inviting you to rest? How can reflecting how help you determine what structures to give life to in the year ahead? Rev. Anastassia Zinke and Josh Long leading this all-ages service. Delivered Sunday, January 1st, 2023. 

Direct download: It_Begins_with_Rest.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:11pm EDT

Join Rev. John on Christmas Day for more stories about the origins of Christmas and why it is a holiday for all souls not just for Christians. Music by Joshua Long, and the UUCA worship ensemble. Sunday, December 25th, 2022.

Direct download: Christmas_Day_clip.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:16am EDT

Christmas, the holiday of new hope, comes even when hope is hard to find. In this season when the night grows long, let us remember where we find hope and the holy. With Revs. Anastassia Zinke and John T. Crestwell, Jr. Music by Emily Sergo.

Direct download: Christmas_Eve.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:02am EDT

On this choir Sunday, from December 18th, listen to "Frostiana", seven of Robert Frost's poems put to music by composer Randall Thompson. Celebrate the incredible talent of Rob Redei, our many musicians, and our fabulous UUCA Choir!

Direct download: Frostina.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:12pm EDT

Today the ministers look at widening the circle of privilege and the UUA’s Article II proposal and what it means for our faith and values.  Member Graham Smith from our BBC Antiracism Committee offers a response to the message.  Enjoy!

Direct download: 8th_Principle.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:49pm EDT

Our 7th Principle, "respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part," likely falls short in capturing how fundamental and sacred our relationship with all existence is (which naturally includes each other as well as nature). Let us celebrate this deep interdependent web. Rev. Anastassia preached, and Scott Eden gave a testimony. Delivered Sunday December 4th, 2022.

Direct download: 7th_Principle.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 5:26pm EDT

Rev. John T. Crestwell Jr. today explores what peace, liberty, and justice for all mean in light of current events. Evelyn Curran gives a reflection on the sixth principle. Delivered November 20th, 2022.

Direct download: Sixth_Principle.mp3
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In the 2022 election, we saw both how threatened and how important "the right of conscience and the use of the democratic process" was. This principle is meant to be alive within our congregations and in society at large. Let's consider how we can strengthen our conscience and our democratic processes. Rev. Anastassia preaching, music by Rob Redei and our UUCA choir. Delivered Nov. 13th, 2022.

Direct download: 5th_Principle.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:56pm EDT

In this message, Rev. John reflects on the 4th UU principle in light of the mid-term elections, recent comments by Kanye West, and Elon Musk's acquisition of Twitter.  He also discusses the principle from a BIPOC perspective and adds insight into how we search for what is true for us in life. Delivered Sunday, November 6th, 2022. #ElonMusk #Kanyewest #Freedom #Fourthprinciple #Twitter #midtermelection
Direct download: 4th_Principle.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:55am EDT

Our Second Principle calls for “justice, equity, and compassion in human relations,” each of which seems particularly lacking in our democracy and society today. How as Unitarian Universalists can we be faithful to this principle and bring it more into the world? Rev. Anastassia preaching, with music by Josh Long and our Worship Ensemble. Delivered on October 23rd, 2022. 

Direct download: 2nd_Principle.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 4:11pm EDT

What is the meaning of our first UU principle? What was the context surrounding its development? How do we square it with people and groups we don't agree with? Join Rev. John as he explores what the "worth and dignity of all" means for us today. Delivered Sunday, October 16th, 2022.

Direct download: 1st_Principle.mp3
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A pilgrimage may reach its destination but the hope, the wisdom, and the lessons learned along the way offer a new starting point. What have we learned and what transformation — what “other way” — are we called to in the name of the right
relationship in our lives? Let's hear from our Camino pilgrims! Grateful for the reflections of Jenn Pollitt Hill, Tricia Hopkins, Jeanne Jehl, Jane Carrigan, Caroline Hadley, and Dianne Moreau. Delivered Sunday, October 9th, 2022. 

Direct download: Camino_Service.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 3:05pm EDT

In your life pilgrimage your tripping stones are also your stepping stones. As you level up in your fractal climb to "heaven", those higher steps require courage and acceptance of unknown spaces. Sermon delivered by Rev. John. T. Crestwell, Jr. on Sunday, September 25th, 2022. 

Direct download: Pleasure_and_Pain.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 3:59pm EDT

All who wander are not lost. Being lost is being found. Let's explore the story of the Prodigal Son and the story of the Alchemist. Delivered by Rev. John T Crestwell, Jr. Delivered on Sunday, September 18th, 2022. 

Direct download: You_are_the_Alchemist.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 8:50pm EDT

As we begin another church year together, let us gather ourselves and our blessing for our journey ahead with our annual water communion ceremony, and backpack blessing. Rev. Anastassia Zinke preaching. Delivered on Sunday, September 11th, 2022. 

Direct download: Our_Communal_Pilgrimmage.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 8:47pm EDT

In this sermon, Rev. John highlights many of the themes the ministers will lift up this church year and the vision/mission for continuing the quest of building a Beloved Community at UUCA and beyond. Music by Joshua Long and the Worship Ensemble. Delivered Sunday, August 28th, 2022.

Direct download: This_Church_Year.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:47pm EDT

Civility, humility, kindness, sharing, and modesty are some of the things we learned in Kindergarten but in our world today these words have seemingly lost their meaning and value. Let's examine ancient and modern civilizations and why we are just beginning to learn how to build community. Sermon delivered by Rev. John T. Crestwell, Jr. Music by Betsy Kranning.

Direct download: Civilizations.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 1:20pm EDT

We all seek to become somebody or achieve success according to our definition of the word. But what if the ultimate goal is not to become anything? Sermon by Rev. John T. Crestwell, Jr.  Music by Sara Jones. Delivered on Sunday, August 14th, 2022. 

Direct download: Becoming_Nobody.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 2:00pm EDT

Unitarian Universalists are questioners. We honor this by having our ministers answer your questions. What are the questions that are gripping your spirit these days? You may submit them in advance by emailing Karen Murphy-Keddell. This is Rev. John's first Sunday back from sabbatical, so we know that you are curious. Music by Sara Jones. Delivered on Sunday, August 8th, 2022. 

Direct download: To_Question.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 2:31pm EDT

The Webb telescope recently provided us with the earliest look into the origins of our universe. This cosmic nursery was also the beginning story for our Earth, for life abundant, and for human life. Let us consider the grand story of which we are a part. Sermon delivered by Rev. Anastassia Zinke. Music by Josh Long and the UUCA worship ensemble. Delivered on Sunday, July 31st, 2022. 

Direct download: From_the_Beginning.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:48am EDT

Explore two narratives about encountering starfish. Let us consider how they might help us discern how we want to meet the world at this moment. Rev. Anastassia preaching, with music offered by Betsy Kraning. Delivered Sunday, July 24th, 2022.

Direct download: Starfish.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 4:44pm EDT

The US political, social, and medical landscape changed dramatically with the Supreme Court's Dobbs decision, which overturned Roe vs Wade and cleared the way for several states to highly restrict or ban abortion services. For us at UUCA, what are the implications of this decision? How will our faith guide us through this time? Rev. Anastassia preaching. Music by Rob Redei and the UUCA choir. Delivered Sunday, July 17th, 2022.

Direct download: Dobbs_Decision.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:28am EDT

This is the story of a good death. We faced it with song and memories and kung pao chicken. It was achieved with intention and mindfulness. It was meant to face Mom's final journey in joy instead of fear. I hope we all learn to be the master of our final moments from this loving example.  By Jane Carrigan, Board of Trustees President, Worship Leader. Delivered on Sunday, May 29th, 2022.

Direct download: Moms_Final_Journey.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:49am EDT

We Only Have Now. Love is an action word that is often expressed as collective action. NOW is the operative word since we only have now. Examples and questions are what drive us to social justice, but only if we truly believe in the 7 Principles and live the 8th Principle in our private and public lives. Thornell Jones is an active member of UUCA who has been a lay leader, is a member of the 8th Principle Practice Team, and is an active social justice leader in the community. Delivered on Sunday, June 19th, 2022.

Direct download: Now_is_the_time.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:25am EDT

Carrie Baquie explores a few pivotal crossroads she encountered on her road to recovery from sudden traumatic illness. We learn through her story that within us all is the power to transform our experience. Following the service at 11:15 am in the Angebrandt Room, we invite you to join Carrie for an After Hour GOING DEEPER session to explore the feelings and emotions around this topic.

A 20-year IT Project Manager and spunky mother of three teens, in early 2019 Carrie experienced a stroke compounded by Lyme disease and Mold Illness. She successfully struggled through misdiagnoses and a lack of agency to emerge as a chronic illness coach. Carrie empowers others with long-term health challenges to rediscover hope, learn to advocate for their own needs, and build wellness at the physical, emotional and spiritual levels. Music by guest pianist-singer and activist Alice Mayne-Ashworth. Alice performs with Strangers That Clique, a DC-based fusion original funk-soul-hip-hop-rock band, and Joyous Voices carolers. Alice has worked with the Debt Collective and other causes to incorporate creative tactics including music and art in designing effective, imaginative collective actions. Delivered Sunday, July 10th, 2022. 

Direct download: UUCA_7-10-2022.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 2:56pm EDT

On July 3, the eve of our nation's birthday, Max Ochs led a service titled: "I HEAR AMERICA SINGING". With help from some gifted UUCA musicians, using a pastiche of folksongs and readings from Mark Twain, Abraham Lincoln, Sophia L. Fahs, Reed Whittemore, and others, Max offers his vision of The America I Believe In.


Max Ochs began his association with UUCA’s Liberal Religious Youth (LRY) in 1956, when he was fifteen. He worked for decades at Anne Arundel County’s anti-poverty agency, and the A.A. Conflict Resolution Center. He has a Masters in Humanities from St. John’s College. Max styles himself as a “primitive American” guitarist, with several recordings. His book of poems "Just Caws" is available on Amazon. He and Suzanne enjoy their nine grandchildren. Flowers provided by Audrey Lengbeyer.

Direct download: uuca_7-3.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:52pm EDT

With Special Guest Speaker, Leika Lewis-Cornwell!

With the climate and weather, ongoing waves of pandemic, court decisions, and other justice issues, sometimes it seems like the same experience over and over again. So how do we keep going--and growing--when it can be so easy to feel stuck? Music will be provided by Joshua Long and the UUCA Ensemble. Delivered on Sunday June 26th, 2022. 

Direct download: UUCA_6-26.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 4:48pm EDT

Our favorite songs, whoever the artist or whatever the style, were created in a strange alchemy of study and inspiration, of strict practice and of letting go. Spiritual practice is a similar combination of dedication, muscle memory and perhaps a little divine inspiration. Join us for a musical exploration of learning to risk, building the muscle memory of courage, and a spiritual practice of relationship when things around us are changing fast. Speaker Matt Meyer. Delivered on Sunday, June 12th, 2022.

Direct download: It_Takes_Practice.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:30am EDT

During this Membership Sunday service, we will reflect together on the meaning we find as part of the UUCA community. We will hear reflections from Rev. Anastassia and members of our congregation. One-year reflection from McKendre Jay. Ten-year reflection from Linda Mundy. Twenty-five-year reflection from Ted Hall. Finally, forty-year reflection from Cindy Curtis.  Music by Rob Redei and the UUCA Choir. Delivered on Sunday June 5th, 2022. 

Direct download: UUCA_6-5-22.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 5:30pm EDT

We will celebrate our Bridging High School seniors as they cross this life stage milestone. We will honor and bless our faith formation volunteers for their incredible service over the past year. Rev. Anastassia preaching, with music offered by Rob Redei and our UUCA Choir. Delievered Sunday May 22nd, 2022. Congratulations Senoirs: Fiona Coleman, Lillian Davis, Maeya Devlin Tremble, Teddy Fleming, Nathaniel Hill, Haven Hitchcock, Isabella Roman, Simmone Wallace, and Will Whitaker.

Direct download: UUCA_5-22.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:17pm EDT

There are many issues that Unitarian Universalists are interested in engaging, so much so the issues sometimes almost define us. But perhaps even more defining is the how of how we do collective action. This Sunday, Rev. Anastassia will draw upon the thought work of adrienne maree brown (writer, a pleasure activist, Octavia Butler scholar, facilitator, speaker and singer, and doula) to unpack some key practices that in brown's words can "grow our capacity to embody the just and liberated worlds we long for." Rev. Anastassia preaching, with music offered by Josh Long and our Worship Ensemble. Delivered on Sunday, May 15th, 2022. 

Direct download: UUCA_5-15.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 5:13pm EDT

For over a year Rev. Fred Muir partnered with a team of UU colleagues to review and write about “Widening the Circle of Concern” (the Report of the UUA Commission on Institutional Change, 2020). It’s a bold, comprehensive, and “frame-bending” appraisal of our multicultural, anti-racism commitments with many recommendations. This morning Rev. Fred will share some of his insights—institutional and personal, religious and spiritual—inspired by our work with particular attention as to how these might shape our sustaining affirmation of the 8th Principle. (This sermon was purchased at UUCA’s auction by Olga Pabon, Angelique Berry, Thornell Jones, and Stan Keeve. If you can, please look at these two links: Widening the Circle of Concern and 8th Principle. Music by Rob Redei and the UUCA Choir. Delivered on Sunday, May 8th, 2022.

Direct download: UUCA_5-8.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:16pm EDT

All the major world religions have a theology that narrates humanity's relationship with the Earth, and that often manifests in certain environments or landmarks being recognized as sacred and, therefore, not to be violated. Come hear what a UU sacred text might sound like, and help identify what local places on this Earth we want to recognize as sacred. Rev. Anastassia preaching, with music by Josh Long. Delievered Sunday, May 1st, 2022.

Direct download: UUCA_5-1.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:17am EDT

Through voluntary or forced migration, most people in the United States don't live on their ancestral land, and in the process, the sacred wisdom traditions and practices of living entwined with the earth have become lost. Utilizing Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants by indigenous botanist Robin Wall Kimmerer, let us reflect on how we can have the Earth become of primary teacher again. Rev. Anastassia preaching, music by the UUCA choir. Delievered on Sunday, April 24th, 2022. 

Direct download: UUCA_4-24.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 2:43pm EDT

When Jesus needed to discern the next steps, he went into the wildness. When we celebrate Passover, we taste bitter herbs and horseradish from our Earth to recall the wisdom and experience of our ancestors. When the crocus opens its purple petals to the crisp air we are invited to experience a vision of Spring. This Easter Sunday, let's consider both what small deaths we can abide, and what revealed truths are speaking to us now. Rev. Anastassia preaching, music by Rob Redei, and the UUCA choir. Delivered on Sunday April 17th, 2022.

Direct download: Let_the_Earth_Speak.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:39pm EDT

UUCA member and Somatic Psychotherapist Jessie Rhines will share a top-down view of the current state of mental health, as well as some bottom-up practices she recommends to help us better care for ourselves and our communities. Join us for our last sermon on the theme of “Compassion,” woven throughout with experiential practice. Music by Josh Long. Delivered on Sunday, April 10th, 2022. 

Direct download: Jessie_Hines_4.10.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 5:08pm EDT

Send Rev. John off on sabbatical with a blessing and listen again to his vision for UUCA in the present/future. Music by The UUCA Choir. Delivered on Sunday, March 27th, 2022.

Direct download: See_Ya_Later_John.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 5:33pm EDT

For this service, Rev. John shares what the environment and world religions have to say about compassion and empathy. Music by the UUCA Ensemble. Delivered on Sunday March 13th, 2022. 

Category: -- posted at: 2:47pm EDT

This pandemic time has exposed fault lines around how individualism and community can come into conflict. Through the work of several contemporary ethicists, we’ll explore how we can make good choices, what we owe to each other, and how our foundational ideals inform those ideas. Guest minister, Rev. Christian Schmidt preaching. Music provided by Rob Redei. Delivered on Sunday March 6th, 2022.

Direct download: UUCA_3-6.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 10:53am EDT

In this message, Rev. John Crestwell, shares his understanding of Casteism and Racism using the brilliant writing of author Isabel Wilkerson from her book Caste: The Origins of our Discontent.


Direct download: Caste_MP3_.mp4
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:02am EDT

Today let's learn why our auto-pilot biases against "them" are tearing our country apart--and how you can hack your mind to be anti-racist and anti-oppressive. Music by Nicole Rumeau. Delivered by John T. Crestwell Jr. on Sunday February 20th, 2022. 

Direct download: UUCA_2-20.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 2:16pm EDT

While political and social activism are essential components of antiracism, so too is spiritual work. How can we use the frame work of blessings to engage in behaviors that foster the Beloved Community? What are some of these practices? Rev. Anastassia preaching, music offered by Rob Redei and the UUCA Choir. Delivered on Sunday February, 13th.

Direct download: UUCA_2-13.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 9:16pm EDT

In 1907, Dr. Frank Scott Corey Wicks delivered a sermon “Good Men In Hell”, that was published and reprinted by the American Unitarian Association over thirty times. It was the most widely circulated Unitarian sermon, and posited the idea that the Unitarian mandate was to not to conform to places of personal comfort. Where would we go and whom would we be with if we lived this mandate today? How does our theology speak to this? Rev. Anastassia Zinke preaching, with music by Sara Jones. Delivered on Sunday February 6th, 2022.

Direct download: 2.6_UUCA.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:47pm EDT

Thoughtco.com says that "Equality is providing the same level of opportunity and assistance to all segments of society, such as races and genders. Equity is providing various levels of support and assistance depending on specific needs or abilities. Equality and equity are most often applied to the rights and opportunities of minority groups." As Ministers of Equal Standing how do we interpret this meaning? Today the ministers will answer questions about how they are engaging in mindful and equitable partnership. Delivered on Sunday January 23rd, 2022.

Direct download: Mindful_Partnership_UUCA.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 4:35pm EDT

Are you a skilled utilizer of words? I'm working on it! "Be careful of the words you say keep them sweet; because you never know which ones you'll have to eat". I learned that growing up. What does it mean to be mindful with our tongue? Let's examine the power of words today as we practice our theme of being reflective this month. Delivered by Rev. John T. Crestwell, Jr. on Sunday January 30th, 2022.

Direct download: Wordsmithing_1-30_UUCA.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 4:34pm EDT

Today we will examine what came out of Rev. King's meditation in prison--his legendary letter that is as important today as it was in 1963. Delivered by Rev. John T. Crestwell, Jr. on Sunday January 16th, 2022. 

Direct download: MLK_Sunday_UUCA_1-16.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 4:57pm EDT

Our ancestors have more nuanced understandings of love. Let us explore these various manifestions of love, and how specific and sacred forms of love can be found in our lives. Rev. Anastassia preaching, music by Max Ochs. Delievered January 2nd, 2022. 

Direct download: Layers_1-2.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 2:14pm EDT

Christmas, the holiday of new hope, comes even when hope is hard to find. Thank goodness it does, especially this year as we are entering into another coronavirus wave. At 8 p.m. on Christmas Eve, come join Rev. Anastassia and be in community as we find hope in messages of our faith, in holiday music, and in being in community together. Online only. Audio of the full service, recorded on December 24th, 2021. 

Direct download: UUCA_Christmas_Eve_Full_Audio.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 2:02pm EDT

As we continue to explore the theme of love, Rev. Anastassia will lead us through considering how we can use our minds, thought analysis and organizing, and hearts, through love and forgiveness, to create the possibility of a better future. Delivered on December 12th, 2021.

Direct download: UUCA_12-12.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:00am EDT

We hold our first congregational meeting immediately following the service. Today the ministers will give their State of Our Union" sermon sharing highlights from the last six months of ministry at UUCA. Delivered on December 5th, 2021. 

Direct download: UUCA_12-5.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 6:46pm EDT

Join us this Sunday for a magical telling of Stone Soup. Audience participation will be expected so come ready to join in the fun. After service, we will gather for soup and celebration of this annual event that begins our holiday season. Music by the UUCA Choir. Delivered 11-28-2021. 

Direct download: UUCA_Stone_Soup_11-28.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 2:22pm EDT

Every life has challenges, and yet no matter the pain and struggles, we can choose to pay attention to a narrative of gratitude. In the process, we can discover joy, health, and a new sense of belonging, not only to the universe as a whole but also to ourselves. Rev. Anastassia preaching with our Worship Ensemble. Delivered on Sunday November 21st, 2021.

Direct download: UUCA_11-21.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:50am EDT

Have you ever been disappointed? How did you resolve it? Rev. John shares 4 things that helps him move from sadness to grace every time. Music by Rob Redei and the UUCA Choir. Delivered on November 14th, 2021. 


Direct download: UUCA_Sermon_11-14.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:54am EDT

Non-violent social movements and actions have effective outcomes, while also reducing risk and harm. Come join us as we consider the strategic nature of non-violence and the spiritual and personal practices that support it. Rev. Anastassia preaching, with music by Josh Long and our Worship Ensemble. Delivered November 7th, 2021. 

Direct download: UUCA_Sermon_11-8.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:14am EDT

As a community, we make many covenants, inherent in them all is to be a gift to one another. When we hurt or harm each other that disrupts our connection with one another. Let us recognize that there have been moments of harm in our community, and grow to understand how such moments land. Together, let us commit ourselves anew to being a community that seeks to contribute to each other's lives, including by reducing harm among ourselves. Music by Sarah Jones. Rev. Anastassia Zinke. Given on October 31st, 2021. 

Direct download: UUCA_10-31.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:08am EDT

The Hindu concept of Ahimsa teaches that when we do harm to another person we do harm to ourselves. "Hurt people hurt people." Today Rev John explores the origins of conflict and violence from the individual to the culture and how we can overcome this tragic pattern. Delivered Sunday October 24th, 2021. 

Direct download: Reading_Sermon_Oct._24th_UUCA.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:29pm EDT

Join Rev. John as he explores a pattern in humanity's evolution that links us to the Buddha's awakening and our potential as evolved beings who do no harm on the planet. Joshua Long and the UUCA Ensemble will provide music. Delivered on Sunday October 17th, 2021.

Direct download: Prayer_Reading_Sermon_Sunday_October_17th_2021.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:35am EDT

When we have done something important wrong, or worse harmed someone, we carry that burden. Confronting it, engaging our failure to live our values, feels like a wrestling match. Why is that? And what blessing can come from wrestling with our worthiness for forgiveness and self-forgiveness? Rev. Anastassia preaching, with music by Josh Long. Delivered on Sunday October 3rd, 2021.

Direct download: Sermon_for_Sunday_October_3rd.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 4:19pm EDT

We know giving forgiveness is an important human virtue, yet whether, how, and when to forgive are challenging questions. What is the spiritual work that proceeds our ability to forgive? Rev. Anastassia preaching, music by Rob Redei and the UUCA Choir. Given on Sunday October 10th, 2021

Direct download: Reading_Sermon_Sunday_October_10th.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:01pm EDT

Did you know that the earth is 70% water and you are 60% water?  That is a close comparison.  Does this mean anything to you?  If it does or doesn't listen to Rev. John's message on water and why understanding this element is a way to better understand ourselves.

Direct download: Water_Metaphors-podcast.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 5:42pm EDT

Theology and Practice. Rev John continues part 2 of his discussion on why, after 20 years, he is still a UU.

Direct download: 05302021_Rev._John_T._Crestwell_Jr._-_Why_I_Am_Still_a_UU__Part_II.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

I became a Unitarian Universalist in 2001. It's been 20 years. I have changed--a lot. I want to share this story with you and how I see the purpose of our faith today in the religious landscape.

Direct download: 05232021_Rev._John_Sermon_Why_I_am_Still_a_UU_After_20_Years.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

What has membership meant to UUCA over through the ages? We want to honor the act of committing to a community of faith. Come join Joshua Long, the Membership Team, and several UUCA members as they share stories, music, and reflection for this special service.

Direct download: 05162021_Rev._Anastassia_Zinke_Members_Sunday.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

At the heart of this and every Beloved Community is love, always love. But love isn’t just a feeling, it’s a practice—a shared practice of affection and care. In congregational life, it matters how we tell the story of our love. This Sunday we’ll consider some “love stories” and what they have to teach us about the practice of love at church. Music by Rob Redei and the UUCA Choir.

Rev. Rob Hardies is a preacher, teacher, and an experienced leader of retreats and pilgrimages. From 2001 to 2020, he was Senior Minister of All Souls Church, Unitarian in Washington, DC, a large, multiracial congregation. During his ministry at All Souls, Rob helped create organizations that advocated for marriage equality and for voting rights. He lives in Washington with his husband and son.

Direct download: 05092021_Rev._Dr._Robert_M._Hardies_Sermon_Love_Always.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie states that the danger of the single story is "the ability not just to tell the story of another person, but to make it the definitive story of that person." One single story that has been part of American history is that Black lives are expendable. We have seen again and again that this single story is not only dangerous, but deadly. In this service, we will consider the Derek Chauvin trial, and how many worked to counter the single stories that informed this case. We will highlight how we need to continue to counter racist and problematic stories, and re-story our way towards Beloved Community. Music by Joshua Long.

Direct download: 05022021_Rev._Anastassia_Zinke_The_Dangers_of_the_Single_Story.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

Ralph Waldo Emerson recognized that the world is meant to be savored and we are designed to savor it. Why is the act of savoring essential for our spiritual lives? Once we have seen the world and savored its beauty, then we know we are called it save it, both for itself and for ourselves. Let us dedicate ourselves to saving this earth.



Direct download: 04.25.2021_Rev_AZ_Dedicate_Ourselves_to_Save_this_Earth.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

Today we examine Naomi Klein's most recent book while also examining "regenerative economies" and how UUCA can adopt and adapt some of its current social justice practices. Music by Rob Redei and the UUCA Choir.

Direct download: 04.18.2021_You_are_the_Earth.mp4
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

Rev. John T. Crestwell, Jr., Minister
Rev. Anastassia Zinke, Minister

The early Jesus followers believed that they would be with Jesus again in an idyllic, earthly community. On this Easter Sunday, we celebrate the paradise that our Earth is meant to be and dedicate ourselves to be evangelists for this earth. Music by Rob Redei and our UUCA Choir.


Direct download: 04042021_Our_Earth_is_the_Home_of_the_Beloved_Community_Sermon.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

We yearn for freedom but what does ultimate freedom look like? In this service Rev. John will look at integrative spirituality as a framework for your spiritual freedom.

Direct download: 03282021_Rev._John_Sermon_Liberation_Accountability_Yin__and_Yang.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT