Sermon Podcasts 2015

January 4, 2015 – “Savoring the Past While Welcoming the Future” – Rev. Bob Eddy

With a lot of help from pianist Bobby van Deusen, our former, now emeritus minister, Rev. Bob Eddy will use show tunes and popular songs to look back over 80 years of making and breaking New Years’ Resolutions. He asks you to ponder these words attributed to Epicurus, his “guru” who died about 2284 years ago:
“We should not view the young man as happy, but rather the old man whose life has been fortunate. The young man at the height of his powers is often befuddled by chance and driven from his course; but the old man has dropped anchor in old age as in a harbor, since he secures in sure and thankful memory goods for which he was once scarcely confident of.”

January 11, 2015 – “Domestic Poverty” – UUCP Member Bob Gerold

In order to solve a problem, you first have to understand it. The problems of poverty both at home and abroad are many and complex. Join Bob in a discussion on the causes of domestic poverty and if any of the current efforts are doing any good.

January 18, 2015 – “Pensacola to Selma – A World of Difference” – Guest Speaker Nancy Ziccardi

Longtime UUCP friend Nancy Ziccardi, formerly of Pensacola, will describe her 20-year transformation into an unusual citizen of Selma, AL. Nancy’s Selma is not the upscale white community she knew in Pensacola. “I live in a shotgun house in the middle of one of Selma’s historic black neighborhoods,” she says. Well known in the community for her music and teaching, Nancy can take us behind the scenes in a place that has become iconic in the Civil Rights Movement and that remains very much in the public eye today.

January 25, 2015 – “Looking Forward” – Rev. Julie Kain

With a new year begun, what do we see when we are looking ahead to the future? How do we keep our bearings while immersed in the journey so that we can arrive at our chosen destination?

February 1, 2015 – “The Hidden Revealed” – Rev. Julie Kain

Have you noticed a pattern in news coverage over the past few months? Incidents when authority figures have abused their power are coming to light in the public eye with more frequency.

February 8, 2015 – “Welcome Home’ – UUCP Member Bob Ortiz

Bob talks about Home. What the word may mean to each of us and what the name may imply. He will also share a poem or two & with the help of musicians, Bob Daniels & Michael Richardson, who will offer a few “home” songs.

February 15, 2015 – “Universe Love Story” – Rev. Julie Kain

Is there a place where science and religion can meet? We will explore the love story at the heart of the universe in this Service for All Ages celebrating Valentine’s Day.

February 22, 2015 – “Controversy of Flags” – UUCP Member Scott Satterwhite

When the Escambia County Commissioners recently voted to take down all but the American and Florida State flags at the civic center, it raised an interesting local controversy. In the City of Five Flags, how can current residents celebrate the city’s heritage in a meaningful way that is relevant for today while also
looking to the future?

March 1, 2015 – “Meandering Through Life” – UUCP Member Bob Ortiz

March 8, 2015 – “In Support of Balance” – UUCP Member Mark Beyerl

Nature strives for balance every minute of every day. Balance is something that most of us strive for in our daily lives…yet few actually achieve it. In a world that seems more and more polarized, how can we work toward increasing balance for ourselves, our community, and our world?

March 15, 2015 – “To Remember Selma” – Rev. Julie Kain

The 50th anniversary of the march from Selma to Montgomery brings a mix of emotions, especially in light of current racial tensions in America. In this service for all ages, we will lift up why it is so important to remember Selma.

March 22, 2015 – “Hard Winter” – Rev. Julie Kain

While the country struggles to recover from a particularly hard winter weather season, reflections on the yearly transition from winter to early spring will be explored.

March 29, 2015 – “Who Is the Other?” – Rev. Julie Kain

It’s been said that all groups of people fear those considered “the other.” What does this mean for our world today?

April 12, 2015 – “Chaos and Creativity” – Rev. Julie Kain

Drawing from process theology, we’ll explore the potentiality available to us when we look creatively at the chaos in our lives and in the world of present day.

April 19, 2015 – “Climate Change: Basic Science, Effects” – UUCP Member Alan Nitzman

Climate Change is controversial politically, but all chemists understand the basic science, which was established over a hundred years ago. We will discuss this science in everyday terms, and give many examples of effects of Climate Change.

April 26, 2015 – “What a Tangled Web We Weave” – Rev. Bob Eddy

May 3, 2015 – “Road to Character” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

We’ll explore ideas from the new book with the same title by New York Times columnist David Brooks including the “art of stumbling” and the difference between “status” values and “eulogy” values in our lives.

May 10, 2015 – “For Our Next Generation” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

For our celebration of Mother’s Day we’ll lift up the special qualities needed in all of us to nurture the next generation. The service will include a Teacher Appreciation ceremony.

May 24, 2015 – “Big Bang and Beyond” – UUCP Member Lal Goel

Challenges to human progress in the 21st century are many: rising sea waters, depleting resources, wars, political ideologies masquerading as religion. Yet for millions of people life has never been as good as today. Lal will describe the “Beyond” and future progress in light of the teachings of Sri Aurobindo. With a divine origin, we are each destined to grow into a more perfect being, just as a seed is destined to grow into a mighty tree.

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May 31, 2015 – “Faced With Diversity” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

A look at several options we have when faced with cultural differences, religious and otherwise, as part of a sermon series on “Who is the Other?” Among the options from which to choose are exclusion, inclusion and pluralistic dialogue.

June 7, 2015 – “Open Hearted” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

It is in having an open heart that we are able to practice compassion. Whether it is with family, friends, adversaries or even ourselves, compassion has the capacity to transform even the stickiest situations.

June 21, 2015 – “More Than One Kind of Love” – Dr. Rev. Julie Kain

So much of who we are and how our lives unfold is shaped by our most important relationships. We will celebrate the multifaceted gifts of love and friendship available to us.

June 28, 2015 – “Beloved Community Awakening” – Guest Speaker Audri Scott Williams and Guest Musician Karen Hunter Watson

The pursuit of the Beloved Community recognizes that all of life is interconnected. It stands at the intersection of global social justice and spiritual transformation. In this service, Audri (scholar, author, producer, activist) anchors the beloved community in the here and now as the way forward for humanity — an embracing of Agape Love with enduring pursuit of systemic changes for the love of the “other”. Audri and Karen share the honor in being named as the first women to lead a walk around the world in 13 years for peace, social justice and the environment.

July 19, 2015 – “Changing Our Minds” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

What are the kinds of turning points in our lives where we find ourselves changing our minds from a long-held position? How do we make the most of such opportunities?

July 26, 2015 – “Strong and Gentle” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

It takes strength to be truly gentle and it takes gentleness to be truly strong. What are the ways we can balance these qualities in our lives to be both effective and happy?

August 2, 2015 – “Double-Edged Sword” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

We want to be helpful and make a difference but what if it turns out we are just making matters worse? How can we tell the difference from when we are helping a good cause
or hurting it?

August 9, 2015 – “New Civil Rights Movement” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

There is a New Civil Rights Movement taking place across the United States. What does that mean for Unitarian Universalists? What’s happening locally? Why is it important to know about it?

August 16, 2015 – “The Child is Father to the Man” and Why We Kill the Albatross – UUCP Member Thom Botsford

After 200 years, the poets William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge still speak to the heart. This talk will consider Wordsworth’s “intimations of immortality” and Coleridge’s bizarre Christian parable,“The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.”

August 23, 2015 – “Gearing Up” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

At the launching of the new school year around us, we are also ‘gearing up’ for potentially the busiest church program year yet! Lots of great energies are brewing…Come find out what is in the works and where you might want to join in and take part.

September 6, 2015 – “Living Our Values Out Loud” – UUCP Member and UUA Staff Maggie Lovins

What does it mean to intentionally live our Unitarian Universalist values out loud? How might we take steps together to see our congregation’s values lived out loud in our community and what it could mean to the world? Drawing from her work with the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Southern Region, Maggie will share her own experiences and help to facilitate a conversation as UUCP crafts a new mission statement for a vote at our Mid-Year Congregational Meeting in January.

September 13, 2015 – “Voice and Action in the World” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

In what ways can Unitarian Universalists support Interfaith Peace Activism? As we continue our congregation-wide social justice theme for a second year, Julie will speak to the role of Unitarian Universalists in interfaith justice work at local, national and international levels.

September 20, 2015 – “Jesus and the Sufis” – Guest Speaker Rev. Dr. Elizabeth Reed – International Peace Day Service for All Ages

In celebration of the International Day of Peace, Elizabeth will be sharing how the teachings of Jesus in his own Aramaic language (based on the work of Jesus scholar Neil Douglas-Klotz) are connected with the mystical practices of modern day Sufis. Following the service, all are welcome to join in Dances of Universal Peace – simple movement
in a circle with joyful rhythms as celebrated today in many cultures around the world led by Elizabeth. Rev. Dr. Elizabeth Reed is an ordained United Methodist minister and founder/director of the Shalem Center in Columbus, Ohio whose mission is wholistic healing and growth centered in interdisciplinary and interfaith perspectives. Elizabeth is also a psychotherapist, spiritual director and workshop leader.

September 27, 2015 – “What’s It All About Alfie?” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

As Unitarian Universalists, do we know what we are about? Given the perennial challenge of describing Unitarian Universalism to those unfamiliar with it and with us, how can a new congregational mission statement help each of us articulate our faith stance and advance our efforts for justice?

October 4, 2015 – “Mission Impossible” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

Is the mission of “becoming the change we want to see in the world” impossible? In what ways are we putting our very own secret superpowers into action? “Your mission, if you choose to accept it,” is to show up and find out…

October 18, 2015 – “Poetry Sunday” – UUCP Members Jill Cicero and Pam Levitt

Join members of the UUCP community for a showcase of our own homegrown poetry. The distillation of words is an art form that is available to everyone and captures the mystic wonder of every moment in a way that it can be shared and reverently remembered.

November 1, 2015 – “Beyond the Mockingbird” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

Even though a new book was published by Harper Lee, written before her American classic To Kill a Mockingbird, the real life story and work of Alabama attorney Bryan Stephenson and his organization Equal Justice Initiative is making the headlines for their legal defense of the wrongly convicted. Stephenson’s book Just Mercy is on the NY Times bestseller list and was selected as the UUA Common Read this year.

November 8, 2015 – “Just Mercy” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

How do we address systemic questions of justice in light of America’s highest rate of incarceration in the world? The U.S. represents 5% of the world’s population and has 25% of the world’s population incarcerated within its jails and prisons. Based in Alabama, human rights activist and civil rights attorney Bryan Stevenson speaks very personally to this complex problem in his best-selling book “Just Mercy.”

November 15, 2015 – “Diwali Festival of Lights” – UUCP Member Lal Goel

Join us to learn about Diwali, a major Hindu holiday that celebrates the victory of good over evil, light over darkness and truth over falsity. Rows of small clay oil lamps or Diyas are lit to symbolize Divine light. Ancient stories are told that depict commitment to truth, righteousness and hope.

November 22, 2015 – “A Season for Gratitude” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

From Thanksgiving throughout the winter holidays, gratitude becomes a focus of our attention. How do we celebrate both our affection for our loved ones and a spirit of generosity that extends to our larger community?

November 29, 2015 – “Service and Joy” – UUCP Member Paula Montgomery

Paula will share her reflections on this inspiring short poem by Rabindranath Tagore – “I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I acted and behold, service was joy.”

December 6, 2015 – “Expectant Heart” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

Long winter nights are naturally a time for retreat and reflection. What new seeds are quietly being planted in your life as they prepare to blossom in the coming months? We join our expectant hearts together in a spirit of Advent and awaiting the hopeful promise of new beginnings.

December 13, 2015 – “Wholly Family Service” – Rev. Dr. Julie Kain

In this holiday Service for All Ages, we celebrate our annual tradition of hearing several families share how Unitarian Universalism and our home congregation are important to them.

December 20, 2015 – “Be Not Afraid” – Minister Emeritus Rev. Bob Eddy

In the darkest time there is still a light of transforming love for our lives and our hurting world.

For most of our history Unitarians and Universalists were known for their heretical opinions on the nature of Jesus of Nazareth. Was he man or a god – or somehow both? Our
minister emeritus will, in two lectures share what is known about the historical Jesus and his religion (a variety of first century Judaism) and Christianity: the religion about Jesus Christ. The religion of Jesus is as revolutionary today as it was during his lifetime but the religion about Jesus Christ (like the religion about Mohamed) endangers the survival of civilization.