WHAT TO EXPECT ON YOUR FIRST VISIT
When do services start and end?
Service starts at 11:00am on Sunday morning. We suggest arriving 10-15 minutes before service so that you can get a name tag (if you want, this is not required), a program, and a comfy place to sit. Service ends at 12:00pm.
What are services like?
In our services, we celebrate and learn together. Service begins with the lighting of our chalice, which is a symbol of UU faith. After our chalice is lit, service begins. Typical Sunday Services include:
Music and Song: We frequently sing popular, secular songs that speak to the Sunday morning theme or topic in addition to songs from our hymnal Singing the Living Tradition.
Readings: Readings come from a variety of sources, including popular fiction, poetry books, autobiographies, spiritual writings (e.g., the Bible, the Koran, etc.), and more.
Reflection: Sunday services are lay-led. The guest speaker gives a prepared talk to the congregation. The Reflection is on a topic of interest to us as Unitarian Universalists. It may be about one of our 8 principles, a contemporary social action issue, or finding meaning and hope in life.
Offertory: During "offertory," a collection basket is passed as the congregation listens to music. Attendees give donations at this time, if they are able.
Joys & Concerns: During Joys and Concerns, people attending service are invited to come forward and share a joy, concern, or milestone with the congregation. This public voicing and witnesses helps us create a sense of community and connection.
What do I do with my kids?
You are welcome to keep your kids with you in the service; however, we do offer childcare for infants through preschoolers. Please speak to Director of Religious Education so we can ensure we can meet the needs of your child.
Older children are invited to join our Elementary School Age Religious Education Program or our Teen Program which both run 11:00am - 12:00pm (the same as the service).
Childcare and Children's Religious Education for more information.
What should I wear?
People dress in all different ways at MVUUC. There are some folks who like to wear "Sunday clothes" and dress-up, but there are lots who also wear jeans and a t-shirt. So, wear what you feel comfortable in!
What happens after the service?
Unitarian Universalists love chatting over coffee and food! We always have coffee/tea available in the social hall after the service and invite you to mingle and meet new people. On the first of each month, we also have a potluck! Even if you forgot to bring food to potluck, you are welcome to stay and eat (there is always plenty of food to share).
Will I be asked to give money?
No, not directly. During the service, there is an "offertory," in which the pianist plays a song and baskets are passed through the audience. Some members place their pledge checks in the basket, and others, including visitors, sometimes place donations (cash or checks) in the basket. This is not required, but is always welcome as running the congregation and offering our programs requires funds. We are nearly 100% dependent on pledges and donations. However, you won't ever be pressured to give money, nor will you ever be turned away because of how much you can give/pledge.