First Jefferson Unitarian Universalist Church

Selected Sermons

No Silent Seeker: Mary Moody Emerson and the
Emergence of Transcendentalism (MP3)
26 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
January 31, 2016
Ralph Waldo Emerson is revered
as a great voice of Unitarianism and
Transcendentalism in the early 1800’s. But
what voices inspired him? Join us for the
story of the aunt who was better “for a poet
than a patron”.

The Mosque Next Door (MP3) 19 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
January 24, 2016
The question of “who is my neighbor?”
rises yet again in the recent reactions to
Muslim immigrants and refugees around
the world. What is the progressive response
to the nuances of not only the cultures
connected to Islam but also those who act
out of fear or self-defense?

The Body of Freedom (MP3) 19 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
January 17, 2016
Deep in the heart of justice is the question
of who controls one’s body. On this weekend
when we reflect on the legacy of Martin
Luther King, Jr., we hear from the voices
of Ta-Nehisi Coates and others who name
the body as the central measure of human

Do You Do Windows? (MP3)
part 1 4 MB
part 2 18 MB
D. Scott Cooper
January 3, 2016
We begin the New Year by continuing the discussion of the Theological House. The windows of our house allow us a view onto the world, allow the world to look back at us, and — if the lighting is just right — can allow us to reflect on ourselves. Join us as we explore how this useful metaphor can deepen our faith and inform our lives.
Scott is a candidate for ordination as a UU minister. This past summer he worked as a Chaplain Intern at the new UT Southwestern Clements Hospital in Dallas just prior to beginning his final year of seminary studies at Brite Divinity School.

A Light in the Long Night (MP3) 19 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
December 20, 2015
Sometimes it seems like one candle or the
birth of one baby is not enough to keep us
through the night. This beloved community
has been lifting up more hope, more joy,
more awe, and more connection since
declaring those to be our deepest values
in January. Sometimes it feels like there is
so much less of everything than more of
anything. With what hope shall we enter the
coming year?

Stop the Sleigh! I Want to Get Off! (MP3) 17 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
November 29, 2015
Take this Sunday to pause amid the rush of
the holiday season. Join us for a chance to
remember what matters most.

The Welcome Table: A Service of Connection (MP3) 16 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
November 22, 2015
Join us for a chance to discover the
intersection between gratitude and

Healing: Becoming Whole (MP3) 25 MB
The Reverend Samuel Schaal
November 8, 2015
Is health and healing merely finding functionality
again? Is it merely “feeling better”? Or is it
something different, something deeper, something
of a soul-quality? How might we each achieve
wholeness, and how might we help heal the world?

The Shape of Grief (MP3) 18 MB
The Reverend Lora Brandis
October 25, 2015
The Kubler-Ross five stage model of grief is a place to
start when grieving, but it isn’t the only way to navigate
grief. Grief isn’t something we move through as if we
have a map. It has its own shape, and according to the
poet Albert Huffstickler, “that’s what we’re looking for:
not the end of a thing but the shape of it.”

Too Big to Fail (MP3) 26 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
October 18, 2015
What happens when we risk everything?
Does it help to know that we are failing all
the time? Find out what happens when faith
and hope meets the ever-present reality of
falling far short of our vision.

Mysteries and Mystics (MP3) 20 MB
Reverend Annie Foerster
October 4. 2015
As Unitarian Universalists we are quite
proud of our rational minds, our ability
to think critically and ferret out the truth.
We deny everything that cannot be
substantiated. But how do we know when
we’re finished? How do we know we haven’t
eradicated too much? I’m all for cleaning
out the attic, but shouldn’t some things be
kept for historical purposes, some for their
beauty and some because they might be
useful one day in the future?

Going Far Together (MP3) 17 MB
The Reverend Susan M. Smith
September 27, 2015
An African proverb says, “If you
want to go fast, go alone. If you want
to go far, go together.” Rev. Smith,
Congregational Life Staff of the
Unitarian Universalist Association
Southern Region, offers this message for
our personal lives as well as concluding
a weekend of crafting a new path for
this community of faith.

The Little Things (MP3) 18 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
September 20, 2015
With the start of Rosh Hashanah and
the Jewish tradition of resolving harm
done to ourselves and others, how do
we become more aware of the small
hurts that happen every day?

The House that Becomes a Home
Part 1 (MP3) 7 MB
Part 2 (MP3) 9 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
September 13, 2015
In a time when hope is needed along
with genuine values that make a positive
difference in the world, the image of the
house is one way to find what already
exists among us as well as what we
create together.

The Suffering of God (MP3) 18 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
August 30, 2015
In any relationship one of the most
important questions is what happens when
there is harm or pain. What does it mean
when someone says, “God is weeping with

When There Is No Other (MP3) 22 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
August 16, 2015
If the foundation of the theological house
begins with the human and the divine, what
is the relationship with those for whom there
is no Holy Other?

Two Gifts: Spirituality and Creativity (MP3) 17 MB
The Reverend Annie Foerster
August 9, 2015
Spirituality and Creativity. They’re not
remotely the same, but they are distantly
related, like the cousins of your cousins. They
are gifts that are available to us all and gifts
we can give ourselves when we choose to
use them. People will tell you about them,
but you have to discover their instructions on
your own. Where do they reside? How can we
find them? I don’t know all the answers, but I
understand some of the important questions.

She: Rediscovering the Divine Feminine (MP3) 26 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
August 2, 2015

Sanctuary (MP3) 17 MB
The Reverend Mark Walz
June 28, 2015
It’s been argued that Religion is the most
powerful and pervasive force on earth.
When at their best religions have inspired
communities to put aside too-narrow self
interests and pursue their higher values.
Religions have also harmed more people
than any other cultural impulse. They have
incited war, slavery, and genocide. Religions
can turn evil. Rev. Mark Walz will preach
the sermon.

Conversations with God (MP3) 22 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
June 21, 2015
I have a few questions. We’ll see who or
what comes up with an answer.

To trust in that daring that shapes the world (MP3) 26 MB
The Reverend Lora Brandis
June 14, 2015
“To trust in that daring that shapes the
world” is a line from a poem by Karin Boye
that challenges us to step away from fear and
into vulnerability. Living life fully, we are not
only challenged to discover how to trust what
shapes the world, but we are also challenged
to learn how to trust ourselves. Courageously
vulnerable, we dare to transform and be
The Reverend Lora Brandis served the Conejo
Valley UU Fellowship in Newbury Park, California
from August 2011 to February 2015.

The Flower Communion (MP3) 9 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
June 7, 2015
All ages are invited to a great Sunday for
welcoming new members into the congregation
and for our annual flower communion. If
possible, please bring locally grown flowers
for our common bouquet as we hear the story
of Norbert Capek and renew our beloved community.

We Are Each Other's Angels (MP3) 21 MB
The Reverend Tony Lorenzen
May 31, 2015

The Choice of Service, the Path of Hope (MP3) 21 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
May 24, 2015

Not by Our Will Alone (MP3) 20 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
April 12, 2015
As First Jefferson takes up a new vision,
there also is the truth that values must be
lived if they are to be relevant to our lives.
Join us for the closing reflection on Rev.
James Luther Adams’ Fourth Smooth Stone
of “incarnation.”

Redeeming Easter (MP3) 32 MB
The Reverend Jennifer Innis
April 5, 2015
One of the great questions asked by
contemporary theologians is, “What is
Christianity without the crucifixion of
Jesus?” Come hear one answer this Sunday.


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Last Updated on Monday, 01 February 2016 09:40

Rev. Jennifer Innis

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