Services with audio transcripts

April 23, 2017

The Important Stuff is Invisible

Reverend Steven Epperson with Worship Associate Larry Boldt —

On this Earth Day Sunday, we’ll check in with some of the latest news from the cosmos and the teeming world beneath our feet, as the world-wide science community reports back to us about their on-going quest to describe the world in which we live. We’ll look at the mind-bending, overall structure of the universe and the hidden life network in our soil. It’s awe-inspiring and surprisingly wonderful stuff.

Crossing boundaries has been a constant feature in Steven Epperson’s life: from rural to urban and Mormon to Unitarian, from university professor to parish ministry, from U.S. citizen to Canadian citizen. There are constants as well: a love of learning, a passion for music (from Bach to Radiohead), a commitment to social justice, and crazy love for his wife Diana, their children and grandchildren. He knows how to darn socks, clean a bathroom, read good stories out loud at bedtime, and shingle a roof.

Read more ›

April 16, 2017

Resurrecting Hope

Christopher Wulff, Ministerial Intern, with Worship Associate Doug McGinnis —

 Viewing Easter as a moment that celebrates resurrection speaks so much to our hopes for an imagined future, for ourselves and for the Earth. As a spring election approaches, how can our democratic practice nurture renewal and inspire us together? What in this world yearns for resurrection?

Read more ›

April 9, 2017

Stories From the Street

Reverend Allen Tysick with Worship Associate Dar Gareau-Levy —

The heart of the Dandelion Society is relationship, being advocates for those with no power, and speaking out for justice and equality for all. Reverend Al Tysick will share with us some of his stories from the street, interwoven with his own personal struggle with theology and his movement from a conservative faith to a more liberal and progressive one … and how the people of the streets have helped him to do that.  

Born in Ottawa in1946, raised by a strong mother who lived on welfare, Allen Tysick, known as “Rev Al” by Victoria’s street community, has been committed to the streets — where his heart and “family” are — for more than 40 years. He founded the Victoria Dandelion Society in April, 2011, as a way to carry his work on the front lines into the future.

Every morning he hits the streets at 5:30 am with coffee, muffins, and whatever warm supplies he has. While those who sleep outside are awakened by the sounds of an awakening city, Al is there to make sure everyone has a safe and welcoming start to their day. He spends the rest of his day going to hospitals, jails and residencies, helping those he visits in whatever they need.

Read more ›

April 2, 2017

The Thread You Follow

Reverends Emily and Marcus Hartlief with Worship Associate Anna Isaacs —

As we navigate the complexities of our lives, what guides our steps? What holds us steady? What changes our course? Some reflections on meaning and mysteries on life’s journey.

Revs. Emily and Marcus Hartlief serve the Vancouver North Shore Unitarian Church. With their one-year-old son Henry they moved from Rochester, NY, to the North Shore in July, 2016. They met and studied together at Starr King School for the Ministry in Berkeley, Calif.

Read more ›

March 26, 2017

A Refugee and Me

Sabine Lehr, Immigrant Services Manager, Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria, with Worship Associate Oliver Belisle —

 Based on her work as manager of the Private Sponsorship of Refugees program at the Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria, Sabine Lehr will share some personal learnings from her experience. Of her experience and message to us, Sabine says, “The ability to play a small role in addressing the global refugee crisis has been a wonderful gift I have been given. In the face of this crisis, when it is tempting to ask ourselves, ‘Where is God in all of this?’, I hope that we can contemplate together how a crisis of even such magnitude can show us a path to a new purpose in life.”  

Sabine Lehr’s passion is the protection of refugees. In her professional life, she manages the Private Sponsorship of Refugees Program at the Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria. She also teaches graduate courses in global leadership and humanitarian studies at Royal Roads University. Sabine is a member of the Executive of the Canadian Council for Refugees and a member of the Council of the (Refugee) Sponsorship Agreement Holders Association of Canada.

Read more ›

March 19, 2017

What Does Reconciliation Look Like?

Rev. Meg Roberts with Worship Associate Liz Graham —

In the journey of truth, healing and reconciliation between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous peoples, what could reconciliation look like? What would need to be in place first before that could happen? I look forward to sharing some ideas from my story as I’ve been learning how to walk this path.  

Meg is in her fifth year doing quarter-time consulting ministry with Comox Valley Unitarian Fellowship.  She lives in Vancouver and is a guest speaker and workshop leader in congregations around B.C. Meg also does Spirit Arts workshops: using creativity and the arts in spiritual exploration.

Read more ›

March 12, 2017

We Who Believe in Freedom Shall Not Rest

NOTE: service starts at 11:30 (Daylight Savings Time) – Christopher Wulff, Ministerial Intern with Worship Associate Anna Isaacs —

For more than 100 years we have marked March 8th as International Women’s Day with marches and protests, celebrations and laments. How shall we celebrate the extraordinary successes of the women’s movement and sit with the experience of those who, at times, felt excluded by it? How do we hold the deep needs in ourselves, so potent in our hearts, and still hear the voices that ask us to draw the circle wider still? 

Read more ›

March 5, 2017

Seeds … and Stories … of Change

Martin Settle, Co-Executive Director of USC Canada with Worship Associate Doug McGinnis —

Seven decades after USC Canada was born as the Unitarian Services Committee, our Seeds of Survival program is giving communities in Canada and around the world a renewed sense of possibility and independence. Protecting seeds and farmers’ rights yields much more than good food: it also sows a brighter future for farming families and for our planet. We share with you — our earliest and strongest supporters — our stories of change and hope.

Martin Settle is Executive Director of USC Canada, Canada’s oldest independent international assistance organization and a global leader in seed conservation. Passionate about global justice, Martin approaches the critical work of enhancing biodiversity as both an end in itself and as a gateway to transforming relationships, lives, and communities. He brings to you stories and firsthand experience of USC Canada’s “Seeds of Survival” program in Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Mali, Timor-Leste, Bangladesh, and Canada.

Read more ›

February 26, 2017


Rev. Melora Lynngood with Worship Associate Dan Klimke –

Class is such a complex demographic category – based partly on income, partly on education, partly on type of employment, partly on… ill-defined cultural differences.  As class is complex, classism is complex.  Today we delve into the complexity, with an eye to uncovering classism we have absorbed and how we can work against it in society.  

Graphic by Dar Gareau-Levy


Read more ›

February 19, 2017

Child Haven Sunday

Rev. Shana Lynngood and members of the Social Responsibility Coalition with Worship Associate Oliver Belisle —

Each year we set aside a Sunday to lift up and support the work of Child Haven International. Begun in 1985 by Bonnie and Rev. Fred Cappuccino, Child Haven International is a registered not-for-profit charity that assists children and women in India, Bangladesh, Tibet in China, and Nepal who are in need of food, education, health care, shelter and clothing, and emotional and moral support. Join us as we share stories of their important work. 

Graphic by Dar Gareau-Levy

Read more ›

Page 4 of 27