Several times a year, people all ages remain in the commons to worship together during the Sunday service. There is nursery care for infants and toddlers during these services. Some of these services focus on similar themes annually, while others vary, depending on the needs of the congregation and the interests of the youth and adult co-leaders.
The first Sunday after Labor Day is our kickoff for the new church year. We celebrate this time with a Water Ceremony where we each bring a bit of water from some place special to us and pour it into a common bowl. We join the waters together in a symbolic rejoining of the waters ceremony, where we gather back in community for another year of religious growth and learning.
In the fall, we hold our animal blessing service in which we celebrate animals. We offer blessings to pets and stuffed animals, remember beloved animals that have died, and pledge our care for the natural world. Well-behaved pets are welcome in church this day.
The last Sunday of the calendar year, we hold our ‘fire service’ in which we burn away what we do not want to carry with us (using magicians flash paper – it’s very dramatic!) and reflect on what we do want to bring with us into the year.
Each spring around Earth Day , we gather together to celebrate the turning of the wheel of the year and celebrate the earth. The children and youth enthusiastically participate in this service, often sharing their ideas of how to live more in harmony with nature.
The second Sunday in June is our final service of the regular church year. We celebrate with a Flower Ceremony, an anti-fascist ritual created by Czech Unitarians. For this service, everyone brings a few flowers and places them in vases in the front. Before the service ends, everyone receives a different flower. This service is a celebration of human diversity and a reminder of the beauty that we can create together.
Other intergenerational services focus on different themes. In recent years, we have had a service focused on the themes of Encanto, solstice services, and we have had drag queens perform.
Intergenerational services are important to our community because it is a chance to be together throughout the lifespan and have services rooted in ritual and play, which is meaningful for people of all ages. In these services, we give our youth a chance to lead and share what is important to them with their church community. We teach our children about our values. Worship services can provide people of all ages the chance to learn and grow at their own level and to take some time in quiet and stillness to honor that which has worth in each of our lives.