Although Unitarian worship services tend to be less liturgical and ritual-based than those in many traditional churches, our services do contain a number of common elements which move the gathered community through an hour-long experience of centering and reflection. These common elements are: Ingathering You will be greeted at the door by an usher who will give you a printed “order of service.” He or she will help you find a seat (if the service is crowded), show you how to use a wireless headset (if you need one), and answer any questions you may have about the service. Welcome The Service Leader welcomes the congregation and reminds us of our purpose by reciting the First Unitarian Church Mission Statement. Visitors are invited to introduce themselves as they feel comfortable. Prelude A reflective piece of music sets the mood for a worshipful service. Chalice Song The flaming chalice is the most widely used Unitarian Universalist symbol. Its lighting is a signal to convene the service, a calling together and focusing of attention, invoking our readiness to worship. Opening Hymn Singing is a joyous form of self-expression. Blending our voices together reminds us that we are not alone. We sing to awaken our spiritual life and energy. Joys and Sorrows Members share those things that have most deeply touched them in the past week. Silent Meditation We often share a minute of reflective silence. Anthem Our choir offers a musical selection tied to the topic of the sermon. Sermon The sermon is the centerpiece of the service, helping us as we seek the "still point of the turning world." Our minister Rev. Connie Simon, regularly offers us stirring, challenging, and thought-provoking sermons. Outside speakers and congregation members sometimes fill this role. You can check the sermon topic and speaker each week on our Upcoming Sunday Worship Topics page. Hymn We join together in a closing hymn. Closing Words These send us off with a reminder to live our mission.