Date and Time: 09/06/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Eric Pourchot and Friends
“Imagine” – Eric Pourchot, Ger Fitzgerald, Linda Doyle, and virtual friends. A mostly-music look at how we use imagination. Imagination leads to new ideas, new inventions, and new ways of seeing, which can make our world a better place. It can also be an escape. Taken to extremes, it can be a departure from reality altogether. Music can be a door into this realm of imagination, since many songs are built on metaphors and similes. Sing along to music by John Lennon, George Gershwin, Barenaked Ladies, Big Star, Elvis Costello, Rodgers and Hammerstein, The Posies, and Peter, Paul and Mary. (Due to rights management and copyright issues, no video is available for this service.)

The Roller Coaster Ride and the Swing

Date and Time: 08/30/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Rev. Dr. Kate R. Walker

Some days it feels like we are on an amusement park ride, and there is no way to get off of this stomach-turning experience. But there is a way to stay steady and strong.

Sermon Video – The Roller Coaster Ride and the Swing

What’s Radical About Hospitality?

Date and Time: 08/23/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Rev. Dr. Kate R. Walker

Are ready to truly be welcoming? It’s more than a smile and a good sermon. To welcome the stranger, we need to ask how we are strange, odd and confusing?

Sermon Video – What’s Radical about Hospitality?

The Question Box

Date and Time: 08/16/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Rev. Dr. Kate R. Walker

This is the annual Sunday when I welcome written questions from those in attendance. A wide variety of topics is welcome, although I hold the right to defer to actual experts.

For All Ages, Offertory, Sermon:

The Question Box – video – For All Ages, Offertory, Sermon

Sticks and Stones

Date and Time: 08/09/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Phyllis Gilmore

There’s a rhyme you may have been taught long ago to use when being picked on: “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” The problem is that words do hurt, particularly when they’re often repeated. Worse, bullying sometimes doesn’t stop with words. We will take a look at bullying, who does it to whom, and the effects of technology.

Are You Ready to Visit the ICU?

Date and Time: 08/02/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Mike Walker

Hate has no home here but are we talking it or living it?

Over the last year, Mike Walker has trained to become a Master Naturalist in the state of Virginia. He found much of this training consistent with our Unitarian Universalist 7th principle: Respect for the interdependent web of life. A particular area of interest for Mike has been the study of ants — and what they can teach us about social life and service to community, and whether to follow the path of other members of their colony. Do we stay on the path that other people are on? Mike asks how ready we are as Unitarians to explore other points of view, particularly we believe other views are wrong. ICU means interest, curiosity and understanding. Mike asks what can we learn if we engage using ICU with those holding other points of view. Reducing issues to all or nothing choices doesn’t serve us well. The goal in the ICU is to be open. Can we listen for the stories of others? You and I have the potential to foster civility. In nature diversity is the key to stability. Hate should never have a home in our hearts.

The Fight to Get the Vote Shall Not Be Denied

Date and Time: 07/26/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Sandra Peterson

One hundred years ago, women won the right to vote through the 19th amendment, passed on August 26, 1920. Sandy Peterson shares what she has learned about the long struggle by women and men to earn all women the right to vote. She reflects on what this means as we are engaged in a new great awakening for the rights to justice and equality for black and minority citizens in this country.

Rare Earth

Date and Time: 07/19/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Alan Bunner

The tiny planet we live on is more rare and remarkable than most of us realize. The characteristics of our planet required an improbable combination of astrophysical and geological events and circumstances. Only today is there a creature that is able to look back on the extraordinary history of our planet and appreciate its rarity. It is a beautiful gift to our species, and a huge responsibility.

What I’ve Learned as a Hospice Chaplain

Date and Time: 07/12/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Eleanor Piez

Grief and loss are hard, and everyone experiences them differently. Moreover, today, the end-of-life journey can be further complicated by Covid 19 and other disruptions in our environment. Chaplain Eleanor Piez explores how we can experience realities filled with anger and despair as well as grief, and yet find a way forward in health and hope.

Homily by Eleanor Piez, Affiliate Minister at Mount Vernon Unitarian Church

Creating Sacred Spaces (Online only)

Date and Time: 07/05/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Rev. Rebekah Savage

With so many of us spending almost every day, all day in our homes, how do we embrace and cultivate a connection with the sacred? When we are observing the world around us, where do we create space in our homes for grief and mourning, beauty and joy? Rev. Rebekah Savage will explore these questions and more with us for this service.

Transcendentalism and Unitarianism – Kaleidoscopic Perspectives (Online only)

Date and Time: 06/28/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Daniel Cohen

Transcendentalism, a seminal 19th century theological philosophy, has contributed much to the faith system now embodied in Unitarian Universalism, but just what that faith system includes, what we as Unitarians have faith in today, and how this affects our hopes, our aspirations and most importantly, our lives, is a work in progress and may differ for each of us.

Strengthened by Uncertainty (Online only)

Date and Time: 06/21/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Rev. Dr. Kate R. Walker

We are faced with uncertain times as past choices propel us into a frightening future. Yet, facing our fear and befriending uncertainty can be a powerful source of strength and reclaiming of a different future. On this Father’s Day, we shift the traditional masculine lens, inviting all of humanity to see the world with a fresh view.

Coming of Age (Online only)

Date and Time: 06/14/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Rev. Dr. Kate R. Walker and Ann Richards

Losing Ones Self In Order to be Found

Date and Time: 06/07/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Rev. Dr. Kate R. Walker (Online only)

The culture of education is grounded in learning; new facts, data and stories. But what if what we learn is wrong? How do we unlearn? Sometimes unlearning is the best path forward – Losing yourself in order to be found.


The Day the Church Came Out (Online only)

Date and Time: 05/31/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Tyler Coles

In the story of Pentecost, we are reminded that there is brilliance and fabulousness in the abundance of our being, and that the difference amongst us is the place where blessings flow from.



Here I Am. Send Me. (Online only)

Date and Time: 05/24/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Bill Clontz

Memorial Day is about the recognition of sacrifice. Our service this Sunday joins in that tradition, but also in celebration of courage, commitment, and community. In the pandemic that now stalks our world, we find many heroes in many professions who now join those who served in uniform, in service dedicated to larger causes and to each other.

Bill Clontz is a longtime member and church leader now living in Asheville, NC with his wife Meg. A retired Army officer, Bill has also served government, in the private sector, and in leadership roles at MVUC.

A Flyover and a Low Blow – Music Sunday – 9:50am (online only)

Date and Time: 05/17/2020 9:50am

Presenter: Mark Zimmerman and Musicians

Just because we’re not in our beloved Chapel don’t think we’re not doing Music Sunday this year! It’s Music Sunday 2020!

Tune in starting at 9:50 for great music from MVUC choir, guest artists, and related hymns and songs on the theme “A Flyover and a Low Blow: How to Honor our Heroes and Heroines” – noting thoughts for the front lines and the fallen during this terrible pandemic.

Music can be both a motivational feeling and reverential experience to help sort our emotions during this difficult time.

Come and be lifted up!

The Flower Ceremony (Online only)

Date and Time: 05/10/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Tyler Coles

The Flower Ceremony

Created in the spring of 1924 in Czechoslovakia, The Flower Ceremony is now an annual celebration of beauty, diversity, and community in Unitarian Universalist communities around the globe. Come and take part in this moment of holy togetherness as we cultivate beauty in our day to day lives.

Lifespan Spiritual Growth: Six Ways to Learn Your Whole Life Long (Online only)

Date and Time: 05/03/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Lifespan Spiritual Growth Council

Online only – 10:00am

Celebrate all the ways a Unitarian Universalist can learn and grow at Mt. Vernon Unitarian Church. Includes a recognition of our wonderful teachers and a peek into the Religious Education Classrooms.

Audio only:

Homily by Ann Richards, Director of Lifespan Spiritual Growth

Imagination as the New Normal (Online only)

Date and Time: 04/26/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Rev. Dr. Kate R. Walker

Online only – 10:00am

We are being pushed hard to reimagine our lives. In the midst of fear, it is crucial to find the quiet and reflective moments so our imagination can see the horizon of hope.

Deconstructed Beef Wellington (Online only)

Date and Time: 04/19/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Rev. Dr. Kate Walker

Online only – 10:00am

We’re in the midst of unlearning as our lives are turned upside down. How do we cope with the stress, and how do we envision our collective future.

Many appreciated Adrie Kusserow’s poem, which was Tyler Coles’s reading for this service, and which Rev. Walker’s homily revisits.

Mary Oliver for Corona Times (After Wild Geese) by Adrie Kusserow


The Topsy Turvy Lessons of the Easter Story (Online only)

Date and Time: 04/12/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Rev. Megan Foley

Online only – 10:00am

One of the wonders of Easter is how the story shows us life in a new way, one that is contrary to typical human expectations. In fact, the story of Easter turns the world’s values completely upside down, underscoring miraculous workings that often go overlooked by human beings. How can those of us a little outside the traditional Christian tradition still learn these lessons? What does Easter have to teach Unitarian Universalists today?

Audio of the homily is available:

To obtain a link to the online service, please contact

Along Came a Donkey (online only)

Date and Time: 04/05/2020 10:00am

Presenter: Tyler Coles

Palm Sunday commemorates the victorious journey of Jesus into the city of Jerusalme. Yet unlike what we might imagine as the scene for such an occassion; an ornate chariot, stern horses, the glitz and glamour. Along came a donkey and the unexpcted story of liberation.

Forswear Thy Foolish Ways (online only)

Date and Time: 03/29/2020 11:15am

Presenter: Rev Kären Rasmussen, MVUC Affiliate Minister

Who was this woman known as Mary Magdalene? Sinner and saint, wise and oh so imperfect. But aren’t we all imperfect as we work our ways towards A Beautiful City? Join Rev. Kären and the choir today as explore this topic of imperfection and enjoy some music from the play Godspell.
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Audio is available:

Where Does It Hurt? (New title; online only)

Date and Time: 03/22/2020 11:15am

Presenter: MVUC Members

Ruby Sales, a prominent activist and thought leader for racial equity once asked, “Where does it hurt?” Though seemingly simple at first glance, Sales’ question calls to mind how our past experiences shape our current responses to this moment of uncertainty.

Join MVUC this Sunday as we learn from the collective wisdom of elders within our community regarding how we might tend to our emotional, spiritual, and physical wellbeing.

Live music will be led by our Music Director Mark Zimmerman and pianist Dr. Yee Von Ng.  The watercolor painting is by Jeanne McIntyre.

Plans are underway to make this service available online.
(Please note: in-person gatherings for Sunday services are not being held at this time.)

An audio version of the panel discussion is available as well:

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