Sunday Worship Services at PCUUC - 9:00 AM

 
January Worship Theme - Reincarnation

"Two of the big questions religions have sought to answer over the years are: “Why does life exist as we know it?” and “What happens after we die?” Unitarian Universalism won’t promise you ironclad answers to these questions. But we will promise you a community of learning and support to explore what matters most" (from  https://www.uua.org/beliefs/what-we-believe/life-death).  A 2001 Gallup poll showed a full 25% of Americans believed in reincarnation while another 20% stated they were unsure ( https://news.gallup.com/poll/4483/Americans-Belief-Psychic-Paranormal-Phenomena-Over-Last-Decade.aspx).  The sermons this month at PCUUC will explore reincarnation as a spiritual idea and the implications that principle can have in our lives.

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  • All Family Services
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    Services

January 26th

Daring Greatly

Jack Kohoutek

Jack will talk about mental illness, the stigma that surrounds it, and his own personal experience living with bipolar disorder. He relates the stigma that surrounds mental illness to the privilege that he experienced growing up as a white male. He will talk about what we can do in our everyday lives to fight stigma, what led him back to the church, and why he is speaking to you this Sunday.


Jack grew up in a suburban area in central Illinois. Valedictorian of his high school class and the captain of two sports teams, he went on to attend the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he met his future wife, Lisa. When Jack attended graduate school at the University of Pennsylvania, he had a psychological experience that would shape the next ten years of his life.

Service Leader: Jim Whitton
 

February 2nd

Language of the Spirit—Grace

Dr. Rev. Nicole C. Kirk

For a growing number of people, they describe themselves as “spiritual but not religious.” Unitarian Universalism has been a home for many who find this description a good fit. But what makes up the vocabulary of spirituality? This sermon will explore our monthly theme of “grace.” What is grace and does it have a place in the vocabulary of spirituality?

 

Nicole Kirk is the Schulman Professor of Unitarian Universalist History at Meadville Lombard Theological School in Chicago and a Unitarian Universalist minister. Prior to her doctoral studies she served congregations in Ohio and New Jersey. Nicole grew up as a Unitarian Universalist in Tulsa, Oklahoma and has a Doctor of Ministry, and a Ph.D. in American Religious History from Princeton Theological Seminary. Her book “Wanamaker’s Temple: Business and Religion in the Wanamaker Department Store” published from NYU Press in 2018.

Service Leader: PennySue McKenzie

February 9th

When the Silver Horn Spills: Selflessness and the Virtue of Grace

Ted Hazelgrove

Grace is the virtue that enables the consistent practice of kindness, generosity, and gratitude. To experience a state of grace is to conduct the daily business of living through selfless action. Grace is the choice of freedom.
 

Ted Hazelgrove has been teaching literature and writing at McHenry County College for the last twenty years. He prefers cloudy days, tragedies, and the company of a good hound dog.

Service Leader: Tamara Wanshek

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January 19th - Multi-Generational Service

How the Buddha Came to Understand Reincarnation

Cathy Benton (she/her)

Cathy Benton is an Associate Professor at Lake Forest College where she teaches courses on the Asian religious traditions, particularly Buddhism and Hinduism, and the study of religion through film.  Cathy has spent more than 35 years traveling back and forth to India, where she has worked with faculty and students, consulted with multinational companies, and researched the lives of women in a small Muslim village in Maharashtra.   In addition to Asian Studies, Cathy enjoys theatre, dance, and film from around the world.

 

For Buddhists, the cyclical process of birth and rebirth is a process quite different from that described by Hindus or Jains, quite different also from the transmigration discussed by ancient Greek thinkers and medieval Jewish mystics.  While most traditions have described reincarnation as the transition of a person’s soul or self into a new life, the Buddha realized a flaw in that perception.  The Buddha saw that no self or soul exists.  We’ll look at this Buddhist understanding of reincarnation that eliminates the concept of a self but includes the practice of Buddhist compassion.

 

Service Leader: Tamara Wanshek

January 12th

Coloring Outside the Lines

Rev. Tony Larsen

Tony's sermon this Sunday is about what people sometimes call "thinking outside the box," "moving outside the grid," or "jumping the rails of conventional thinking." It is also sometimes referred to simply as a paradigm shift. Whatever we might call it though, it is the foundation stone for almost every important movement, cultural change, scientific advancement, artistic breakthrough, or religious development. In his sermon Tony will discuss how it can be important to our spiritual lives as well."

 

Rev. Dr. Tony Larsen recently retired from ministering at Olympia Brown UU Church in Racine, Wisconsin (after 42 years--a record!). Tony studied to be a Catholic priest before he switched to the UU ministry and has written a book entitled "Trust Yourself: You Have the Power" (Impact Publishers, 1979); authored a UUA curriculum called "A Catechism for Unitarian Universalists" (1988); and contributed chapters to 2 Skinner House books, "Salted With Fire" and "Everyday Spiritual Practice."

Service Leader: PennySue McKenzie

January 5th

You Don't Have to Die to be Reborn

Mike Honegger

Mike will talk about ways that one can be reincarnated without physically dying. He will give examples from his own life and discuss how this acts a positive means for growth.

Mike Honegger is an active member of Prairie Circle Unitarian Universalist Congregation including having served as the Board President and Treasurer among other roles. He is also a devout Agnostic and is probably a Humanist. He lives in Third Lake with his wife Mary and their cat Max.

Service Leader: Mary Honegger

December 29th - All Family Service

Unconditional Love: One Man's Impression

David Bozek

Mr. Bozek will talk about love and his personal journey through two worlds and an evolution into Unconditional Love.

 

David is a decorated Combat Veteran of Viet Nam. He holds a Master's Degree in Holistic Nutrition, and has been in PCUUC for 6 years. Being bilingual in Spanish helps in his occasional service as an Election Judge for Lake County. He is currently retired, and serves coffee for Prairie Circle on Sundays.

 

Service Leader: Jim Whitton

December 24th - All Family Christmas Eve Service at 4:30pm

Christmas Eve: A UU Service of Lessons and Carols

Rev. Denise Tracy

Our guest minister, Rev. Denise Tracy, lives in Elgin, IL with her husband, Bill Decker and son, Kyle. She was ordained in 1974 and has had ministries on a college campus, in a parish, as a UUA executive, as a consultant, and as an interim minister. She is a chaplain with the Elgin Police Department. She won the 2014 MLK Humanitarian Award from the City of Elgin’s Human Relations Commission for her work on the Elgin, City of Peace. She is a tutor at a middle school and part of The Alignment Collaborative for Education, a new way of harnessing resources to give every child a fair chance at a bright future.

Service Leader: Mike Honegger

December 22nd - Multi-Generational Service

Light Upon Light

Anjum Fatima

The verse of Light, in Arabic called Ayat-an-Noor, can be found in the 35th verse, of the 24th Chapter of the Holy Quran: Surah An-Noor. The verse is renowned for its’ beauty and imagery and is often referred to by Muslim philosophers and Sufi Mystics. In this verse, Allah (SWT) is described as the “Light of the heavens and the earth”. This metaphor holds a deeper meaning, as it explains one of the attributes, or characteristics of God: that God is An-Nur, or “The Light”.

Anjum’s passion is working with individuals with disabilities. She also loves nature and trying new foods. Anjum’s name comes from the Holy Quran. The word “Anjum” is the plural of the word “Najm” and means “star” or “stars”. It is derived from the N-J-M root which is used in many places in the Holy Quran.

Service Leader: Jason Grover

December 15th

Why UUS Sing Christmas Carols?

Rev. Tony Larsen

"Sometimes people are surprised that many Unitarian Universalists sing traditional holiday carols--especially if we don't all believe in them literally. But that is to misunderstand the nature of myth and legend. Jesus' birth story has a lot of similarities with other savior stories around the world--including angels, miracles, virgin births, magi following a star, etc. So when UUs sing carols, they are about something much bigger than one particular tradition. Find our all about it this Sunday." 

 

Rev. Dr. Tony Larsen recently retired from ministering at Olympia Brown UU Church in Racine, Wisconsin (after 42 years--a record!). Tony studied to be a Catholic priest before he switched to the UU ministry and has written a book entitled "Trust Yourself: You Have the Power" (Impact Publishers, 1979); authored a UUA curriculum called "A Catechism for Unitarian Universalists" (1988); and contributed chapters to 2 Skinner House books, "Salted With Fire" and "Everyday Spiritual Practice."

Service Leader: Tamara Wanshek

December 8th

Why Do the Stories Never Wear Out?

Rev. Dr. Nicole C. Kirk


During the holiday season, hope and mystery are intertwined. As the days grow shorter and the winter solstice approaches we will reflect on the gifts of mystery, hope, and mythic story in our lives.

 

Nicole Kirk is the Schulman Professor of Unitarian Universalist History at Meadville Lombard Theological School in Chicago and a Unitarian Universalist minister. Prior to her doctoral studies she served congregations in Ohio and New Jersey. Nicole grew up as a Unitarian Universalist in Tulsa, Oklahoma and has a Doctor of Ministry, and a Ph.D. in American Religious History from Princeton Theological Seminary. Her book “Wanamaker’s Temple: Business and Religion in the Wanamaker Department Store” published from NYU Press in 2018.

Service Leader: PennySue McKenzie

December 1st

It's Tough When It's Rough at Christmas

Bruce Moon

Bruce L. Moon, Ph.D. is professor emeritus of art therapy at Mount Mary University.

He is a painter, and singer/songwriter and author of eleven books and numerous articles on art therapy.

This is the first Sunday of Advent, traditionally a time of hope and preparation. And yet, for many, it is also the beginning of a season of trepidation, as mixed feelings about consumerism mingle with religious traditions.  This service will look to an unlikely place for lessons of hope, reconciliation, and relationship.

Service Leader: Lynn Hepler

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