Sermon: Who We Are; What We Dream

Sunday, November 8, 2015, 10:15am
Rev. Olivia Holmes

NOV 8th: As we continue along in this transitional year and think about who to call as your next minister, AND while we’re on the subject of “offering”, it seems like a good time to ask the question “Who Are We and What Do We Have to Offer?”  Rev. Olivia Holmes and Rev. Shayna Appel will co-lead this service of community reflection.

The Ideal UU Minister

First Reading

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Peterborough UU Church, NH.



Original by Terrance Smith

The Ideal UU Minister:  He/She preaches exactly 20 minutes and then sits down.  She condemns sin, but never hurts anyone’s feelings. 

He works from 8:00am to 10:00pm in every type of work, from preaching to taxi service.

She makes 60 dollars a week, wears good clothes, buys good books regularly, has a nice family, drives a good car, and gives 30 dollars a week to the church.

He also stands ready to contribute to every good work that comes along.

She is 26 years old and has been preaching for 30 years.

He is tall and short, thin and heavyset, plain-looking but handsome.

She has one brown eye and one blue, hair parted in the middle, left side straight and dark, the other side wavy and blond.

He has a burning desire to work with teenagers, and spends all his time with the older folks. 

She smiles all the time with a straight face because she has a sense of humor that keeps her seriously dedicated to her work.

He makes 15 calls a day on church members who are in the hospital, shut-in, just lonely, or in life crisis; spends all his time evangelizing the unchurched, and is never out of his office.

She is truly a remarkable person…and does not yet exist.


Second Reading

“I Want My Church”

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Peterborough UU Church, NH.


A few years ago an elderly woman in the congregation I was serving came to give me a single tattered sheet of paper.  She thought I might want it; it was just a single torn and crinkled page from a church newsletter from years and years before.  And what a treasure, partly because of this reading, still legible, by Virginia McGill:


            I want to belong to a church which is not content to be a coaster, or a glider,

or a stand-patter.

            I want my church to have a taste for the up-grade.

            I want my church to pull me – a little;

                        to push me when I lag behind or

                        when obstacles are a little too great;

            but most of the time

            I want my church to teach me to climb all by myself.


            I want my church, with the beauty of its service,

                        the vitality of its teaching,

                        and the inspiration of its example

                        to keep me dreaming dreams I never can forget,

                        and show me stars I never saw before.