Worship remains the core of our time together and how we connect and sustain each other and our identity as a congregation. We hold one service on Sunday mornings at 10:30 AM. Typically, a Sunday service includes rituals, a story for all ages with a focus on children, rituals, and a sermon or message, along with a weekly collection for a charitable cause. We sing from both current Unitarian Universalist hymnals: Singing the Living Tradition and Singing the Journey. Involving lay leadership is an important aspect of our Sunday service, so we have congregants who act as Worship Associate and take on a significant role in conducting the service along with the minister.
Our Music Coordinator, Nicolas Place, uses the piano as his primary instrument, though sometimes we are graced with music from our harpsichord, played by our Music Director Emeritus, Dan Lindblom, or we have a treat of a vocal offering from one of our talented congregants. Once a month we have a guest musician, allowing us the chance to enjoy a variety of different styles of music.
We believe that faith formation is for all ages. Children and youth are welcome to attend the whole of our Sunday services with their families. For ages Kindergarten through middle school, we sing them out to our Spirit Lab, a space for spiritual exploration inspired by Unitarian Universalist values and practices. Some Sundays we do have multi-generational worship where congregants of all ages spend the service together. Nearly all Sundays we offer child care for children younger than Kindergarten-age, provided by well-trained high schoolers as part of our Youth Empowerment Program. This year — 2019-20 — our 8th graders are taking part in the Our Whole Lives programming at our sibling congregation, the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Princeton.
We will sometimes have non-traditional services that may focus more on guest speaker presentations; musical performances or observance of holidays from our tradition or other traditions. During some services, we will include some of our traditional UU rituals, such as Water Ingathering (typically the second Sunday in September), child dedications or naming ceremonies, teenager coming-of-age rituals (ours is called Affirmation), or Flowering Festival (typically in May). Honoring the six sources that contribute to Unitarian Universalism, this congregation does hold a Christmas Eve service, as well as two services on Easter – a small early one in our Sanctuary Garden and then a multi-generational service at our regular time of 10:30.