Religion, Spirituality and Mental Health
May 3 - UUSCV Minister Peter Farriday
Can religion and spirituality contribute to excellent mental health? Yes. Can these also contribute to mental, emotional and spiritual distress and dysfunction? Yes. Our service will probe this contradiction, and offer thoughts and suggestions on how to maximize the positive facets—which paradoxically means sometimes embracing so-called “negative” emotions, and ceasing to strive for happiness. Come explore this fascinating and frequently counterintuitive conundrum.
Disassociating from the Virgin
May 10 - Brittany Batong
What does the word "Mother" mean? For a woman with children, the word can stir up unexpected questions on identity. General societal expectations often effect the overall spiritual well-being of the individual, who essentially feels she must sacrifice who she is to "BECOME" the "MOTHER". Brittany Batong will examine this from a spiritual point of view, including the concept of the Virgin Mother and how it still creates an expectation for women of purity and perfection that is an impossible one to emulate. She will also discuss the pressures on women in general (not just moms), to meet and/or challenge the archetypes found in religious writings. Special guest musician Melissa Lewis will provide a soundtrack with themes of self-discovery. We'll set the stage for allowing ourselves to separate from who we think we should be and simply allow ourselves to be who we are.
Finding Joy in the Here and Now
May 17 - Rev. Tera Little
In a world much in need of healing, true joy can be found in and around the jagged edges of our lives.Rev. Tera Little currently serves two ministry positions: one as minister of Throop Church in Pasadena, and the other as Congregational Life Staff for the Unitarian Universalist Association. She is in her last weeks with the UUA after having worked for our Association for 16 years! Her passions include eco-feminist spirituality, justice making, and bringing beauty into the world through gardening. Tera is also the last minister for whom our congregation was asked to be the ordaining congregation. We ordained her in 2011 at First Church of LA.
May 24 - UUSCV Minister Rev. Peter Farriday
For millennia, tribal elders consciously guided youth into adulthood via deliberate rites of initiation. In modern times such rites have been largely abandoned—but the inner need for initiation hasn’t diminished. Thus many young people unconsciously seek initiation by engaging in risky behavior and dangerous situations. Our service explores what healthy rites of passage might look like today, and honors Kate Honeyman and McKenzie Thomas as they cross the bridge from high school to the next phase of life.
Restringing the Beads
May 31 - Michael Eselun
Popular guest speaker and oncology chaplain Michael Eselun will explore our relationship to our own stories and how we use them in the attempt to make spiritual sense of our lives.
Fifth Sunday Presentation (immediately after the service) – “California’s Water Woes – How It Affects Our Own Community and the Environment and What We Can Do to Help Both,” with Lynne Plambeck (see article).