Past services

August 13, 2017

“Overcoming The Invisible Lion”…Seeking reality in a world of illusion…

Rev. Mark Lemon with Worship Associate Doug McGinnis – One of the great dilemmas facing those who seek spiritual wisdom is the perennial search for Truth.

The challenge we all face in a culture of fake news and disinformation is discerning the Real. The essential ground for this pursuit is our own consciousness.  By identifying blocks, seeing our programming and extricating ourselves from the cultural matrix in which we live, we create the foundation for living an authentic life.

Rev. Lemon, B.F.A. M.Div., has facilitated hundreds of people over the last twenty plus years in the transformational journey of self realization and becoming.

Ordained in the Anglican Church in 1985, Mark has worked with congregations, young offenders and prison inmates and facilitated retreats and conferences. His passion is the awakening of wisdom and the liberation of consciousness in his private counselling practice.

Schooled in holotropic breath work as taught by Leonard Orr, this process integrates the conscious and unconscious and leads to expanded states of awareness.

For livestream click here. Password 4FUmembers 

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August 6, 2017

Singing our Faith 

This Sunday we will focus on the hymns we love to sing and the readings that inspire us from our grey hymnal, Singing the Living Tradition

Come and sing your faith, or just listen and feel the musical spirit as we sit on the lawn under the willow tree.

Anna Isaacs will lead the congregation in singing familiar Unitarian  favourites. Braden Young will keep us in tune and in time at the piano.

We’re outdoors under the willow tree because of a necessary change in venue because the Sanctuary floor is being re-finished. Outdoors presents a perfect opportunity to sing together.

The Sanctuary floor is being refinished and needs some time to cure before being used again. 

Refreshments will be available. Please bring a lawn chair or blanket / cushion for seating. We invite you to seize this opportunity to enjoy fellowship on our beautiful grounds.

Michelle Brown has been rescheduled to Sunday, Sept. 3, when we will view her beautiful photos taken on her trip to Romania.

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July 30, 2017

Principles and Virtues.

Peter Scales with Worship Associate Oliver Belisle –

What does it mean to be virtuous, and how does this goal manifest in our Unitarian Universalist principles? Which of the classical virtues match the UU principles, and which virtues have we abandoned?

Peter Scales joined both of Victoria’s congregations when he moved here from Kingston in 2004. After 21 years as a federal servant he semi-retired to part-time work as a historian, philosopher and old-car tinkerer.

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July 23, 2017


Suresh Basrur with Worship Associate Susan Layng –

Suresh Basrur practises and is a scholar of the Hindu faith.

He participates in inter-faith activities in Victoria and speaks to audiences about Hindu religion, philosophy and practices, having authored many articles on this topic.

Some of us know him as a patron of Child Haven International, which is a charity our church supports.

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July 16, 2017

Stoic Philosophy

Russell McNeil with Worship Associate Larry Boldt – 

Stoicism is a very simple philosophy. Everything in the universe is interconnected as in a web and governed by a universal natural law. Human beings are in this web, so are subject to the same laws as everything else. The human mind or psyche, as the Greeks referred to the soul, is not mysterious or alien – it is a natural power we all har- ness to take action – to do things with our lives. We call this power “reason.” The Stoics were guided by a natu- ral – yet divine – “law,” called Logos that rested firmly on the real laws of nature, or physics. Stoicism requires ab- solute authenticity and brutal honesty.

Russell McNeil has a PhD in Physics from York University. As a graduate student in the 1970s he pioneered a laser radar (LIDAR) technology which in its evolved form has been used to measure properties of the atmosphere from the surface of Mars (NASA “Phoenix” mission, 2010). In 2008 Russell wrote “The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius, Selections Annotated and Explained” for Skylight Paths. A life-long fitness enthusiast, Russell is certified as a Personal Trainer. Russell is also one of two lay chaplains at First Unitarian Fellowship of Nanaimo.


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July 9, 2017

Understanding Truth, Healing and Reconciliation through a Memorable Journey

Amanda Tarling with  Worship Associate Doug McGinnis – 

Based on a day-long experiential workshop, this is a unique and powerful service in which Amanda will lead us in re-creating an ancient First Nations community and then allow history to unfold around us. Come join us for an extraordinary and moving Sunday Service.

Amanda Tarling is one of the lay leaders of Capital Unitarian Universalist Congregation and no stranger to Victoria Unitarian. Amanda has served many years as a Lay Chaplain and presents workshops for Lay Chaplains at the provincial and national level. An avid hiker and yogini, Amanda is passionate about finding spirituality in the forest. She graduated from McGill University in 1986 and lived in London for 10 years. Amanda is married with two amazing children, including a son with disabilities.

For livestream click here. Password: 4FUmembers

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July 2, 2017

Pride Service: Rainbow Connections

 Arran Liddel and Worship Associate Anna Isaacs –

Like any culture, queer culture changes over time. With these changes, we see ourselves and each other differently, both inside and outside of queer communities. We will share stories and reflections about how evolving queer identities offer a more nuanced understanding of love and  inclusion … and, of course, some fabulous music!

Arran Liddel moved to Victoria last year from Toronto (although he is Scottish) with his partner Gen to be near the ocean and trees. His work has focuses on building community as well as training and facilitation on issues related to healthy relationships, sexuality, conflict resolution and restorative justice/practices. He is currently doing a Masters of Divinity, focusing on earth-based spiritualities, at Cherry Hill Seminary.  

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June 25, 2017

Dwelling in the Realm of Death

Susan Breiddal  with Worship Associate Dan Klimke —

Intellectually, we all know that we are going to die. Whether we embrace this knowledge, understand it, run from it, or pretend it’s not going to happen, we all have an appointment with death. As Unitarians we are often willing to deal head-on with what most people find to be difficult issues. Dr. Breiddal will speak about her Lived Experience of encountering mortality on a daily basis in the palliative care setting in her role as hospice counsellor.

Susan Breiddal is a counsellor with Victoria Hospice. She works on a nurse/counsellor palliative response team, going into the community and responding to a crisis of a physical, mental, emotional, social or spiritual nature. Susan is a counsellor, writer and educator in the field of palliative care. She graduated from the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology in Palo Alto, Ca., and is presently a PhD Candidate at the University of Victoria in Education Curriculum and Instruction.

View livestream here, password 4FUmembers.

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June 18, 2017

Learning to Laugh at Yourself … and why it’s essential for mind, heart and spirit

Minister Emeritus Reverend Jane Bramadat with Worship Associate Oliver Belisle —

We are very good at searching out facts, doing justice, and generally trying to be good people. But sometimes in our intensity we forget that the human condition means we need to acknowledge and correct our mistakes and rigidities with humour. By doing so each of us can be more open to truth, joy, reality, and being our best possible person.

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June 11, 2017

Our Deepest Longings in the Journey of Life

Faye Mogensen and Christopher Wulff  with Worship Associate Doug McGinnis

In our annual transitions service we’ll be sharing your responses to last month’s reflections on “what you want to do before you die.”

From hopes to master a video game or finally clear out the basement to learning a new skill or reconciling with friends and family, your responses were varied and
fascinating. And we’ve noticed that our children and youth have much in common with the congregation’s adults and elders.

Join us as we consider our individual and shared aspirations and how they relate to the many cycles of life, while honouring and celebrating the many transitions each of you experience along this journey of life.

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