December 29, 2019
Aw Shucks, Finding Awe in a Troubled World

Mary Anne Ford with SA Robert Floyd
At the end of 2019, we shake our heads about the year coming to an end. How can we find awe/hope for the future in the new year to come?

December 15,
Christmas Service

Rev. Xolani Kacela with SA Haney Pearson
Merry Christmas, everyone. We’ll reflect on the meaning of Jesus’ birth and the celebration of life we all experience.

December 8, 2019
Where’s Waldo (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

Mary Anne Ford with SA Elisa Sanchez
Ralph Waldo Emerson’s thoughts contribute a great deal to modern 2019 Unitarian Universalism thought. How can we today, in a digital age, find meaning in the works of Waldo, the name that Ralph Waldo Emerson preferred to be called?

December 1, 2019
Poetry Service

Rev. Xolani Kacela with Brooks Lewis
We’ll explore how poetry affects our inner lives and spirituality. We’ll be revisiting Mary Oliver’s “Wild Geese” along with selections honoring the International AIDS Day of Remembrance.

November 24, 2019
Thanksgiving Service

Rev. Xolani Kacela
Oh, we give thanks for this precious day. Making meaning of Thanksgiving through the ongoing practice of gratitude.

November 17, 2019
Attention and Mindfulness

Rev. Xolani Kacela with John Seeley
What happens when we begin paying attention to one another in a mindful way? Bringing mindfulness into focus in a different way.

November 10, 2019
Veterans, PTSD, and Moral Injury

Rev. Xolani Kacela
Inside the world of military veterans and an exploration of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and moral injury. How might Unitarian Universalists relate with veterans in our families and congregations, and with their own experience of trauma. All veterans are invited to wear or bring service items to the service in commemoration of Veterans Day.

November 3, 2019
Remembering and Celebrating Our Departed Loved Ones

Eliza Sanchez with Kathy Eagle
Members are encouraged to bring photos or mementos of their dearly departed. The congregation will also be given an opportunity to share their loved one’s name and a sentence about them.

October 27, 2019
Gender Equity

Sally Atkinson and Caitlyn Stein
“Gender Equity” was the focus of this year’s Unitarian Universalist United Nations Organization (UU-UNO) Intergenerational Seminar. Caitlyn Calway Stein and Sally Atkinson participated as representatives of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Las Cruces, and will reflect on lessons learned during the conference.

October 20, 2019
Sermon On the Amount

Rev. Xolani Kacela
We kickoff our annual stewardship campaign by exploring the meaning of giving for the future. How can we extend more generosity to the church to ensure our congregation’s mission is sustainable and fulfilled in our community? This is one of our #1 imperatives.

October 13, 2019

Rev. Xolani Kacela with SA Joy Goldbaum
The path to extending forgiveness is often long and hard. Rev. Kacela and Joy Goldbaum will reflect on forgiveness and what it means for their lives. Special music by Roy Zimmerman. Note: this sermon was won by Joy at the 2019 auction.

October 6, 2019
The Art of Being Human

Sherman Z. Logan jr with SA Haney Pearson
If we were asked to define ourselves, what descriptors would we use, our gender, our race, our religion, our socio-economic status? They may indeed serve as accurate descriptions of certain aspects of our lives. But we are more than that; we are human beings. What does it mean to be human?

September 29, 2019
Universalism Day: What Can We Learn from Our Universalist Ancestors?

Rev. Xolani Kacela
We’ll take lessons from the 1st American Universalist minister, the Reverend John Murray. How does the 18th-century religion apply to and inform us today?

September 22, 2019
The Wisdom of Defying Expectations

Maggie Locatelli with SA Robert Floyd
Many times clarifying our expectations of ourselves, one another, and the world around us may be useful. Today’s service will focus on the ways our expectations can hinder us, and the importance of defying them, or at least not grasping them.

September 15, 2019
Ingathering Sunday — Bienvenidos a Todos!

Rev. Xolani Kacela with SA Elisa Sanchez
We begin a new church year as a gathered, beloved community. We’re swinging wide the doors of the church by celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month. Elisa Sanchez will lead us with a reflection and Catherine Massey will lead us in music from Hispanic Unitarian Universalist traditions.

September 8, 2019
Expect Great Things

James Caufield and Katya Gonzalez with Maggie Locatelli
Expectation seems to be an overarching phenomenon that manifests in many ways, for instance as faith and belief, as hope, and as bias. Indeed, most of life seems to be built upon expectations–psychology shows that even the empirical data we select and recall depends upon our expectations. So in some ways science has shown us how unscientific we are. And maybe this is not a bad thing! I’ll try to say why it is reasonable to expect unreasonably good things.

September 1, 2019
Our Expectations Make Us Who We Are

Rev. Xolani Kacela with SA Haney Pearson
Our September theme is “expectations.” This sermon reflects on words by the early Unitarian Henry David Thoreau who calls us to make “conscious endeavors.”

August 18, 2019
The Importance of the Search for Truth and Meaning

David Carlson with Rev. Xolani Kacela
Based on the book “MISTAKES WERE MADE (but not by me)” we’ll see how important the search for truth and right relations are to our church.

August 11, 2019
Unitarian Universalist Faith and Democracy Today

Rev. Xolani Kacela with Service Associate Haney Pearson

Read important Draft Statement of Conscience from the Unitarian Universalist Association

What is the state of democracy today in our congregations and the broader Unitarian Universalist movement? How can we assure ourselves that we are doing our part in the democratic process? And what about “world community?” We’ll explore the 5th and 6th Unitarian Universalist principles. 5th Principle: The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large. 6th Principle: The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all.

August 4, 2019
Celebrating Our Fourth Principle: The Search for Truth and Meaning

David Steele and Kathy Eagle

As Unitarian Universalists we are called upon as individuals to search for our own truth and meaning to guide us in our relations with one another. With this freedom comes responsibility. In this service we explore the meaning of “truth,” the meaning of “meaning,” and why our faith tradition does not mean that “anything goes.”

July 28, 2019
Get a Hold of Yourself!

Rev. Xolani Kacela with Service Associate Katya Gonzalez
The more you know and live out your own values and spiritual convictions, the more you should be able to appreciate others’ values and spiritual convictions, then celebrate and encourage them on their path; especially when different than yours. A few ideas from my forthcoming book.

July 21, 2019
Justice, Equality, and Compassion in Human Relations

Haney Pearson with Service Associate Brooks Lewis
Everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect! This truth is a natural outgrowth from our first 2 principles. Why else do we work for justice and equity? NOTE: This audio contains a spoken interpretation by Brooks Lewis of “Get Up Stand Up.” The song was written by Bob Marley and Peter Tosh and originally appeared on The Wailers’ 1973 album Burnin’. Haney Pearson’s reflection follows.

July 14, 2019
Is Everyone Really Worthy

Rev. Xolani Kacela with Service Associate Christine Ramsey
The Inherent Worth and Dignity of Every Person? Who would have thought that in 2019 so many basic assumptions about liberation and freedom for certain human identities would still be in question? We liberals thought we’d all be living as equals. There is still much work to do. NOTE: This audio contains a lead-in reflection by Christine Ramsey followed by Rev. Kacela’s sermon.

July 7, 2019
Losing Our Home

James Caufield with Service Associate Katya Gonzalez
Respect for the Independent Web of all Existence of Which We Are a Part. Our seventh principle tells us we should take care of our planet. That has not been going so well– climate change is a huge problem. It’s hard to summarize, but James attempts to explain the basics, and put our current situation in perspective.

June 30, 2019
What Does Humanism Mean Today?

Rev. Xolani Kacela
Revisiting an award-winning sermon by Rev. Dr. Barry M. Andrews that explores the meaning of humanism and its various forms and how we might use it as a means of good and positive change.

June 23, 2019
The Beauty of Nature

Cassandra Calway with Service Associate Brooks Lewis
There is beauty all around us all we need to do is stop and take it all in.

June 19, 2019
Beauty and Soul

Service Associates Maggie Locatelli and Karen Hall
Thomas Moore wrote: “For the soul, then, beauty is not defined by pleasantness of form but rather as the quality of things that invites absorption and contemplation.” This service will explore what beauty means spiritually.

February 24, 2019
Black Women and the Sacred

“Since the beginning of chattel slavery in this country, black women have been magically making something from nothing, conjuring up lives for themselves and their families with nothing but crumbs, dust and ashes…” I will look at some ideas with our special guest Ms. Patricia Gray, a clinical ortho-bionomist.

Listen to the sermon.

January 20, 2019
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Sunday – What’s Possible?

The struggle is not over. Though many elements of Dr. King’s dream have been realized – the Civil Rights legislation, integrated schools, an MLK holiday, and a black president – there is still work to do. What do you care about and what are you willing to do?

Listen to the sermon.

January 13, 2019
The Possibilities are as Open as Our Imagination

The poet says, “Listen carefully…” When you listen, what do you hear? What do you see in the new year? Where does your imagination take you? Let’s continue to dream big!

Listen to the sermon.