Past services

August 2, 2020

Confessions of a (Recovering) People Pleaser

Samantha Magnus with Worship Associate David Vest – Fears drive our behaviour more than we like to think.

Samantha uses the Enneagram framework to outline how each of us are deeply averse to certain experiences (for her, it’s disapproval). 

She’ll reflect on how understanding these fears allows us to see past them, hearing instead that voice still and small which gently guides us to a better way of being.






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July 26, 2020

Lay Chaplains: A Time of Transition

Lay Chaplains led by Liz Graham with Worship Associate Kressa Sisu– 

The work of our lay chaplains is to help folks with the transitions in their lives, whether it is welcoming a new child, joining lives together in marriage or saying farewell to a loved one. 

They also co-create rites of passage when asked for many other transitions: new homes, new life stages, letting go of relationships, careers or pets.  

We will hear about some of these that our team of Lay Chaplains has facilitated.

As well, this service celebrates a transition in our Lay Chaplain team. We will install a new Lay Chaplain and thank another for her years of service.

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July 19, 2020

Embracing Mystery – A UU Mystic’s Story

llara Stefaniuk-Gaudet with Worship Associate Lynne Bonner – 

Westwood Unitarian Congregation’s Director of Religious Education IIara Stefaniuk-Gaudet relives their close encounters with death. 

Lifelong kidney disease and a vivid dream life bring a unique and personal twist to Ilara’s story. May you leave feeling as uplifted as they did while penning their story to share! 

Ilara Stefaniuk-Gaudet is a visual artist, poet, and story teller. They are a lifelong UU, even before they knew it! They’ve spent their years advocating for people with disabilities, Inter-faith initiatives, and LGBTQ2S+ humans, and following synchronicity to wherever it guides them. Ilara loves gardening, anything crafty, and being a student of life. 

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July 12, 2020

Fresh Eyes

Fay Mogensen with Worship Associate Samantha Magnus – 

This past winter, Faye Mogensen says she didn’t know what to expect when she and her husband set off to volunteer in a small West African town. 

Max Planck’s words, “when you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change,” are

Faye Mogensen

now resonating for her. 

The stories in today’s service are based on her reflections of their time in Taiama, Sierra Leone, and some surprising experiences there. 

Faye Mogensen is a Victoria Unitarian member and the former Director of Spiritual Exploration and Learning. She has continued to hone her storytelling skills and gathered more stories during her recent travels, as well as here at home.

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July 5, 2020

From Fear to Engagement in Racial Justice

Rev. Patricia Trudeau with Worship Associate David Vest – 

There is trouble in the world and we don’t know what to do to dismantle racism.

Many Canadians wonder if current disruptions in the U.S.A. are a Canadian problem given our different histories and demographics.

Rev. Trudeau speaks about recent events of anti-black racism here and in the U.S.A., and the intersectionality of racism, pandemic, poverty and policing.

Rev. Trudeau was ordained as a Unitarian Universalist minister last year in Toronto following a long career in social work, college counselling and social work education. She proudly serves as the minister at the Unitarian Fellowship of Northwest Toronto. Her passion for racial justice is expressed in her sermons and workshops on becoming allies in anti-oppression. 

Her work is inspired by her spouse and son, strong black activists in both Canada and the U.S.A.

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June 28, 2020

Proud of Who We Are

Rev. Shana Lynngood with Worship Associate Lynne Bonner – 

This Pride Sunday we explore what pride looks like for all of us, both those in the GLBTQI+ community and those who are not. 

Pride was, after all, considered one of the seven deadly sins. How can it be a virtue?

When we are proud of who we are (all of who we are) how does that change how we move through the world? How much does shame get in the way of us living out our fullness?

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June 21, 2020

Service of Transition for All Ages

Rev. Melora Lynngood and Arran Liddel, Director of Spiritual Exploration and Learning for Children and Youth, with Worship Associate Kressa Sisu –

What has this past year been like for you?  What changes have you been through?  What losses have you experienced?  

What new life, new creations, new ventures have come into being?  

This year’s annual transition service will honour the full range of life’s transitions, with extra care given to the drastic changes in these past few months. We will do so with an eye to this month’s theme of “Compassion.”



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June 14, 2020

The Lotus – My Life in Two Cultures

Gitanjali John Iyam with Worship Associate Victoria Barr – 

The symbol of the lotus is found all over India in art, fashion, architecture, religion and spirituality.

It is India’s national flower.  

My mother Padma, and daughter Mrnalini, are named after it.  

I ponder what it means to me and how it has helped me navigate life in two cultures.

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June 7, 2020

Embracing Self and Others

Rev. Shana Lynngood with Worship Associate David Vest – 

As we begin our exploration of compassion, we look to the link between our compassion for ourselves and toward others. 

How much do I extend grace and care toward my shortcomings and weaknesses? If I am able to appreciate my own struggles, how much more am I able to empathize and hold others in compassion? 

This morning we explore how wide our embrace can be, and how the encouragement we have been offered during the pandemic to “be kind” includes our own being.


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May 31, 2020

Liminal Spaces

Rev. Shana Lynngood with Worship Associate Lynne Bonner – 

The notion of a liminal space, an area that is on both sides of a threshold, has often fascinated me. 

We often think of things in stark either/or terms – I was in this space and then this one.

Our lives, however, often feel like they meander more and are less clearly distinct and defined than that. 

When have you occupied more than one space at once? What have liminal times offered?

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