Holidays and Traditions
Join us in celebrating a variety of holidays and traditions
Coming to church on Easter is complicated for our Unitarian Universalist tradition. For some of us this is a Sunday just like any other. For some it’s proof positive that Spring is here and for some attendance is sparked by curiosity. How do we UUs in our desire to embrace diverse theological perspectives participate in the holiest of Christian celebrations? Come and see!
Everyone brings a flower to share. Extras are provided if you don’t have any at home. Everyone goes home with a different flower. What a wonderful way to celebrate the beauty of the Earth!
In-Gathering of Waters
Everyone brings water from somewhere special to them. The waters are mingled together in a ceremony of love and connection.
Blessing of the Animals
We love our animals and during this service we’ll bless and welcome all pets and special animal friends. What fun to have dogs, cats, birds, and other animal friends in the sanctuary (horses and such usually stand outside the side door!).
Thanksgiving Shared Meal
We gather in our Welcoming Room to share this special meal together. Participants bring parts of a traditional Thanksgiving meal on the afternoon of Thanksgiving Day. Together we celebrate our companionship and give thanks for all that we have.
On a Sunday near Thanksgiving Day we celebrate a Bread Communion. This is the autumn version of our Flower Communion. The congregation is invited to bring unsliced loaves of bread (homemade or not), to be blessed during the service and then shared during the coffee hour.
On Christmas Eve we offer an early evening “Carols and Candlelight” service suitable for families and persons of all ages.
Share in these Rites of Passage regularly celebrated at Saltwater
Carry the Flame Celebration
Children between the ages of 7 and 11 participate in the Carry the Flame program. The program helps to strengthen their sense of belonging to our church community and to deepen their understanding of Unitarian Universalism. The celebration is just one of the ways the congregation acknowledges and celebrates those who completed the program.
Coming of Age
We offer Coming of Age program for youth in the 8th and 9th grades. Our youth learn more about the history of Unitarian Universalism, our church, and ways of living our faith in the world. They then craft their own faith statements with guidance from adult mentors. The Coming of Age program culminates in mid May with recognition in the Sunday morning church service.
We honor our high school seniors with a bridging service in late spring to acknowledge the transition from childhood to adulthood. This service often includes shared memories and wishes for the bridging seniors. As one of the rites of passage, this ceremony includes a welcome into our adult community and into our young adult group.
Naming and Dedication of Children
This is the Unitarian Universalist equivalent of baptism. Unitarian Universalists do not believe in the concept of original sin so instead we offer a lovely ceremony of blessing for children during a Sunday church service. These ceremonies are offered once or twice per year. The family brings their child(ren) forward to be named by their parents and blessed by the minister. The congregation also shares a response of commitment to be a community of support for the family and the children. Many families choose to have older children as well as infants participate in the naming and dedication ceremony.