Chalice Groups: Sessions (N-Z)

Prayer (doc): Prayer takes many shapes and forms. Attending the moment. Sitting with the holy. Working for justice. Too often we don’t talk about how we pray. By sharing what we’ve learned of prayer, even if we haven’t called it that, we can each deepen and enrich our experience of the holy in our lives.

Radical Hospitality (doc): Welcoming a stranger may seem natural to some of us, but sometimes, even often times, we find it easier to stay where we are, in the comfort of people we know, the place we live, doing what seems familiar to us. But as UUs, we are called to reach out, lend a hand and give a hug to strangers, visitors, our guests – even with people who make us uncomfortable. Together we will explore how we can do better and what it means to practice radical hospitality.

Reading as Spiritual Practice (doc): Many Unitarian Universalists are voracious readers with wide ranging interests that provide us with much to think and talk about. Readers find great comfort in visiting libraries, scouring bookstores, holding books, collecting books and becoming engaged and enchanted with characters or subject matter. We will discuss and share our thoughts about reading as spiritual practice.

Reflections on Mortality (doc): At some point in our lives, we recognize that our earthly life will end. By examining our own thoughts on death, we may be better able to understand how our thoughts of mortality influence the way we live.

Relationship with Money (doc): Money, some say, makes the world go ’round. But is it true? What is the value of money? And how can we use our money to best reflect our values? In this session we will explore the relationship we currently have with money and consider whether and how that relationship might be improved.

Relationship with our Bodies (doc): Pleasure and pain, beauty and squalor, joy and sorrow, all of these are known to us through the realm of our bodies. For as long as we are alive we will live in these physical temples. How do you relate to the fact of your body?

Relationship with our Families (doc): Focus on the family. Family values. Family matters. Who are these people we call family and what are the ties that bind us? Who are we in relation to our families, and who are our families, in relation to society at large?

Regret, Restoration and Restitution (doc): We have each done and said things we deeply regret. What can we do to fix what we break? How are we changed when we have the humility to accept our mistakes and seek restoration? Let us learn together to heal the wounds we cause, for such mis-steps are part of being alive.

Sabbath Time (doc): How do we take time apart from the daily flow of life? How do we use our “free” time. Finding ways to honor the idea of the Sabbath may give us the respite and renewal so many of us need.

Sacred Places (doc): Sacred places and times in our lives become touch points for our connections with the holy. Exploring those times helps us better understand who we’ve been and who we’re becoming

Seeing with Open Eyes (doc): How often do we see the world as it is? How often do we see the world as we expect it to be? How often do we see what we’d like to see rather than what is really there? By sharing our experiences of seeing clearly with each other may we learn to see more honestly.

Set in Stone (doc): It’s too easy to sail through our daily lives without pausing to consider the whole of the life we are living. Let us pause to consider if this life that we are living is the life we were meant to live while there is time yet to make changes.

Sharing Poetry as Spiritual Practice (doc): There are many types of poetry from sonnets to song lyrics, from free verse to highly structured poems. They all contribute to an ancient and timeless art form of using words to convey and portray feelings, ideas and beauty. Poetry can evoke strong emotions and connections to the spiritual self. Sharing our favorite poems and poets, we are able to connect more deeply with each other. {This session requires advance preparation; participants are asked to bring poetry with them to the session. You may wish to have some poetry books available from the library for anyone who may have forgotten bring any.}

Silence and Slowing Down (doc): In our busy lives we too rarely slow down. This session provides a chance to explore the possibilities of slowing our lives down and listening in the silence.

Speaking of the Holy (doc): Mystery. God. Humanity. Reason. As Unitarian Universalists we have difficulty naming our experience of the holy. By wrestling with this language together we may find it possible to begin to form shared language and thus to speak the truth of our own experience with the holy.

Spirituality? (doc): We use the word a lot, but what do we mean by it? What do you mean by it? By sharing our experiences and insights we can enrich our spiritual lives and live more deeply and more fully in this world.

Summering – 2010 Closing Session (doc): Most of us anticipate the unfolding of summer with expectations of relaxation, rejuvenation, and enjoyment. With extended daylight and warm temperatures comes the possibility for activities beyond our daily routine. As we end our time together, let us share our hopes for the coming months.

Taking a Stand (doc): When the small voice within calls us to take a stand, how do we respond knowing the risks of speaking out? We have all stayed silent when we might have spoken and we have all paid the price of speaking out when others would will us to stay silent. By telling these stories we can prepare ourselves for the next time that small voice calls out to us.

Telling Our Stories (doc): Our deepest values, our religion, is in our stories. Our stories are our ongoing testament and sacred text. What is your story? How can we learn from each other’s stories?

The Only Way Out is Through (doc): We all experience disappointment, despair, pain, illness, loss, hopelessness and self-doubt. How do we not only get through, but find hope and joy again? Some would say that we must fully experience the pain; that the only way out is through. Without this we can never fully heal. What is your experience, your wisdom?

The Value of Family (doc): Families are a source of love, joy and nurture. They’re also sources of hurt, betrayal and pain. We each inherit a meaning of family and recreate our own understanding. By telling the stories of our families and we can heal the pain, recall the love, and create meanings of “family” that will hold us, even in the hard times.

To Be a Unitarian Universalist (doc): We’ve come to this church to share our faith, our beliefs, our understanding of this world. But as UUs, this means something different to each of us. Today we will celebrate our diversity and desire to accept each other as individuals on the same spiritual path, though we may see the world differently.

Understanding and Responding to Violence in Society (doc): There is violence all around us; it is inescapable. In every news program we watch and in the magazines or newspapers we read, we see and hear of violence. It is difficult to comprehend. How do we cope? How do we make sense out of what seems senseless?

Which Side of the Tracks? (doc): How does our sense of abundance impact the way we walk in the world? How does our class background influence who we are today and how we interact with other people? Taking time to reflect on the impact of class in our lives can help us make conscious decisions where so often we react unconsciously, living out years of invisible class teachings.

You the Creator (doc): We each have deep wells of creativity within us as one of the gifts of being human. Exploring how our creativity is a part of our spiritual exploration and expression can deepen both our spiritual lives and our creative expression.