Three Stories – Three Lessons

Three Stories – Three Lessons with Dick Smythe A huge public library’s astonishing decision that reduces its income by several million dollars. The discovery and subsequent  study of ancient North American Indian footprints without any involvement by Native Americans either in their study or subsequent interpretation.  An innocent Black man shot dead in his apartment […]

Continue reading

Lessons From a Wolf and Two Grizzly Bears

Lessons From a Wolf and Two Grizzly Bears with Dick Smythe About the Message: Many creatures with whom we share this planet, including wolves and bears, have evolved capacities and behaviors that demonstrate both intelligence and the ability to adapt to changes in their environments.  This morning I will share two true stories – one […]

Continue reading

A Different Voice

A Different Voice with Dick Smythe About the Message: How often do we hear a critique of the church in America from: A black pastor…Former drug dealer…Former sex worker…Former homeless queer teen…Former felon? This morning we will hear from a Lutheran pastor who combines all these attributes. I believe we need to hear what he […]

Continue reading

We Are the Generation

Nine years ago we had no public discourse  and little public awareness of climate change.  This August the sixth report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, usually referred to as the IPPC report, was published.  In terms not normally used in scientific reporting – “It is unequivocal and established fact that human activities are […]

Continue reading

Whom Do We Really Know?

How many people do you really know? Do you agree with Joan Chittister? Who has written, “…We are becoming a world of cardboard figures, entombed in technology, living in hermetically sealed personal planets. We don’t really know anybody anymore, and nobody really knows us.” We will take a close look at a world famous individual […]

Continue reading

Who Needs Science?

Is the U.S. a scientifically advanced country? Of course it is. The U.S. claims far more Nobel Prizes than any other nation. Most of us carry our own personal computers in our purses or pockets and we would be lost without them. Yet, an unfortunate number of us question the safety and efficacy of vaccines, […]

Continue reading

Which Human Sin Is the Most Harmful?

Sin is not a topic we discuss very often. Do we even remember the “seven deadly sins” of Christian theology? Are they relevant today? If not, how would we answer the question posed by the title of today’s talk? How about some other questions: If you believe in God, what is your god’s job description? […]

Continue reading

Our Sisters and Brothers

Who are our sisters and brothers? To whom are we related? Do we believe other creatures are bereft of concern for their compatriots? Do we think only large-brained humans can enjoy beauty, can understand how to solicit help, can grieve, can display thankfulness; in short, can demonstrate many of our presumed higher human attributes? More and more […]

Continue reading

What do You Think the Bible Is?

Our UU faith tradition was grounded in Christianity. As such, the Bible and its many interpretations have largely shaped UU history.  Yet, for many of us the Bible is a strange, largely unknown book that we rarely, if ever, open. Yet, English authors over the centuries have presumed that their readers were Biblically literate. In […]

Continue reading

Are You Awake?

This talk is not an examination of anyone’s sleeping habits.  Nor am I concerned whether or not some of us occasionally doze off at UU.  Rather, we will consider whether our lives “bring us to the point where we become part of creation rather than merely observers of it.”  The Benedictine abbess, Joan Chittister, an […]

Continue reading