What's Happening April 9 - 15, 2018


Join us on Sunday, April 15 at 10:30 am, for Asking the Right Questions with Rev. Diane Rollert
and music by Sandra Hunt and Maider Martineau
How do you open up dialogue when dealing with polarizing conflict? It all begins with the willingness to be curious about the other. In the early 2000s a group of pro-choice and pro-life community leaders in Boston began a five-year conversation that became the basis of an approach to dialogue known as reflective structured dialogue. Rev. Diane will share what she learned this winter about this powerful approach to bridging our deepest differences.

An RE lunch will follow the service at noon. The Collage Afternoon will meet from 1:00 - 4:00 pm in the Garden Room that same day.

For more information, go to the This Month page.

A Curious Confluence (Audio Available)

Reflection by Rev. Diane Rollert, 1 April 2018

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Easter, Passover, April Fool’s (Poisson d’avril), the first Sunday in a month focused on the theme of curiosity, my very first day back after a three-month sabbatical. I’ve got nothing... You can go home now…  April Fools!

But seriously, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had this dream on a Saturday night that I’m standing in some very strange sanctuary and I discover that I’m supposed to preach and I have no manuscript, no notes, no clue about what I’m supposed to say. I stand in terrified silence, desperately searching through random papers. “What do I say? What do I say?” By the time I finally start to speak, everyone has given up and left the sanctuary.

Continue reading or listen to A Curious Confluence

What's Happening April 2 - 8, 2018

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During our worship service on Sunday, April 8, Rev. Diane Rollert will present While I Was Away at 10:30 am with music by Sandra Hunt.
Everyone’s curious to know: “What did you really do on your sabbatical?” This Sunday, Rev. Diane will answer as honestly as possible as she reflects on her travels in the US, Nepal and Europe over the past three months. We doubt it will be your typical travelogue, but there might be pictures.

 Seeking the Sacred in Stories, facilitated by Rev. Diane Rollert, will meet on Tuesday, April 3, at at noon. Join us on Friday, April 6, at 5:30 pm, for a family-friendly Seder in observance of Passover. The Social and Environmental Concerns Committee will meet after the Sunday service on April 8 at 12:30 pm.

For more information, go to the This Month page.

Awareness of Indigenous Cultures Speaker Series: Lisa Koperqualuk

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Monday, March 26, 7:00 - 9:00 pm
Awareness of Indigenous Cultures Speaker Series: Lisa Koperqualuk

Lisa Koperqualuk is the founder of Saturviit, the Inuit Women's Association of Nunavik. She grew up with her grandparents in Kuujjuarapik, Kangirsuk and Puvirnituq. She has a Master's degree in anthropolgy from Laval and has worked for the Makivik Corporation, Kativik Ilisarniliriniq School Board and Nunsvik Sivunitsavut. 

What's Happening April 1, 2018

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Jon us for Easter on Sunday, April 1 at 10:30 am, for A Curious Confluence with Rev. Diane Rollert and music by Maider Martineau and special Italian/Basque guest musician, Maddalena Luzzi
Easter, Passover, April Fools and more. What does this day bring? Join Rev. Diane Rollert on her first day back from sabbatical.

11:45 Easter Communion at UCM
For the past 176 years, this congregation has observed communion at least twice a year. It is a tradition that was so important to past generations that it was written into our By-Laws to be ob-served on the Sunday closest to All Souls Day and on Easter Sunday. Today we celebrate a simple bread and wine communion to honour our roots. The communion service begins immediately fol-lowing the regular service and is entirely optional. Everyone is welcome.

BidSunday donation offers are due on April 1. Use the online form to make your offer.

What's Happening March 19 - 25, 2018

Join us on Sunday, March 25 at 10:30 am for Creative Spirit Jam with Danielle Webber with Sandra Hunt, Katherine Childs, Yvette Salinas, and Many Others!
Come to worship this morning with your creative selves ready to play! The worship and staff team have gathered multiple creative opportunities for you to join in on. Interested in playing hand bells with Sandra? Or dancing with the children and Chloe? Perhaps you want something more contemplative and would like to try your hand at writing or visual art? We will also have an opportunity for you to play with fiber, yarn, and stitching floss; or building blocks and Lego. Please join us this morning as we worshipfully create.

After the service, the Ruth di Giovanni Film Series will present Addicted to Plastic at 2:30 pm. Earlier in the week, the Marie-Dion Issues Action Group will meet on Wednesday, March 21 at  10:30 am, for letter writing. The Midday Meal will follow at 12:30 pm with Music in the Afternoon starting at 1:45 pm.

For more information, go to the This Month page.

What's Happening March 12 - 18, 2018

Join us on Sunday, March 18 at 10:30 am, for Creative Passion or Spiritual Practice? with Danielle Webber and music by the Parts in Peace choir, led by Maider Martineau, with  accompaniment by Sandra Hunt and guest musician Benjamin Tremblay Carpentier.
There are so many ways to live into our creativity: in spurts of activity, with regular practice,
in constant, overwhelming flows. Sometimes we draw it out of a dry well. How do we understand these different modes of creativity? Two models of creative expression have gained popularity: as an expression of passion and as a spiritual practice. What are their differences? What are their similarities?

The Collage Afternoon will follow the service at 1:00 pm. 
For more information, go to the This Month page.

What's Happening March 5 - 11, 2018


On Sunday, March 11 at 10:30 am, our service will be Pathways of Creativity with Danielle Webber
and music by Maider Martineau, Olivier Arsenault, Patricia Ho-Yi Wang and dancer, Chloe Hart.
With special guests this morning sharing their understandings of creativity in music and dance, we will be looking at many different ways to engage with creativity. How do we start on the path, what keeps us there, and how do people find joy, frustration, elation and fury? No matter where you are on the pathway of creativity, even if you think you are not on it at all, we hope this service will stir something inside you. An RE lunch will follow the service.

What's Happening February 26 - March 4, 2018


Join us on Sunday, March 4 at 10:30 am, for In Dreams Begin Responsibility with Mark Abley and music by Sandra Hunt and Maider Martineau
Dreams are as essential as bread — we couldn’t live without them. To place limits on dreams is to constrict the imagination. But what if the urge to create runs into conflict with the need to be morally responsible? The Irish poet William Butler Yeats quoted an old saying at the start of one of his finest collections of poems: “In dreams begin responsibility."

Saturday, March 3 - Concert: Les marginaux des années '20, 7:30 pm
Admission: suggested donation is $25 or what you can afford.
Andréanne Brisson-Paquin, soprano, Vincent Ranallo, baryton, and Brigitte Poulin, piano
Three renowned, award-winning musicians will perform a beautiful programme of songs by Unitarians George Brewer and Alfred LaLiberté along with other great composers of that period, such as Ravel, Charles Ives, and Erik Satie. I hope many of you will take this unique opportunity to hear compositions by our Unitarian Church's former organist, George Brewer, and the former owner of our beautiful Steinway grand, Alfred Laliberté, at this special concert celebrating our church's 175th anniversary.

What's Happening February 19 - 25, 2018


Join us for our worship service, Love and Justice, with Danielle Webber at 10:30 am on Sunday, February 25, with music by Maider Martineau. In May 2016, at the Canadian Unitarian Council’s Annual General Meeting, a motion was passed to adopt the following vision statement: “As Canadian Unitarian Universalists, we envision a world in which our interdependence calls us to love and justice.” What does this vision statement ask of us? How are we expected to live this into the future of our world, and how will we ensure that Unitarian Universalism’s future is bright and focused?

Following the service, the Ruth di Giovanni Film Series will present Fractured Land at noon. 

What's Happening February 12 - 18, 2018


Join us on Sunday, February 18 at 10:30 am, for our worship service, The Antidote to Perfectionism, with Danielle Webber and music by Maider Martineau and Louise Halperin.
How can interdependence encourage us to move away from the concept of perfectionism: a need to be all things to all people, to constantly have everything under control, to be self-critical and to have an all-or-nothing approach to life? Is it possible to step away from the need to be perfect, and realize the resources all around us? The service will be followed by an RE lunch. 

The Collage Afternoon takes place at 1:00 pm after the lunch. Earlier in the week on Wednesday, February 21, the Marie-Berthe Dion Issues Action Group will meet at 10:30 am. The Midday Meal with Music follows at 12:30 pm, with Music in the Afternoon at 1:45 pm. 

For more information, go to the This Month page.

What's Happening February 5 - 11, 2018


On Sunday, February 11 at 10:30 am, our worship service will be By This We Live with Nicoline Guerrier, music by Maider Martineau and Sandra Hunt.
There’s a simple song we’ve embraced in our tradition. Its words remind us, “From you I receive, to you I give, together we share, and from this we live.” How does this dance of giving and receiving, central to all our lives, affirm and reinforce our essential interdependence?

Following the service at 2 pm there will be  a Valentine's Concert of Love Songs, Folksongs and Food Songs featuring a collaboration of three Quebec Unitarian musicians: Kerry-Anne Kutz, music director from the Lakeshore Unitarian Fellowship; Maider Martineau, UCM choir and song leader; and Sandra Hunt, UCM music director. Suggested donation $25, or whatever you can afford. 

What's Happening January 29 - February 4, 2018

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Join us Sunday, February 4 at 10:30 am, for our worship service, Intergenerational Interdependence, with Danielle Webber, Rebekah Mobley-Kasner and Katherine Childs. The music will be byJane Critchlow and the Parts in Peace Choir led by  Maider Martineau and accompanied by Sandra Hunt.
What a better way to live into and explore our understanding of interdependence than to have an intergenerational service…with a twist? Please join us this Sunday for an innovative style of worship, and perhaps an innovative understanding of interdependence.

The service will be followed by a SECC Fundraising Lunch  to benefit L'Itineraire, an organisation that helps homeless men and women. We will be serving David Horan’s famous soup, along with many other hot and cold dishes.

The Growth of Humanity (Audio Available)

Reflection by Danielle Webber, 21 January 2018


The Growth of humanity. What could that possibly mean? I struggled to describe my concepts to my colleagues as we prepared for this Sunday’s service. 
What is your theme and what are some songs that you think would suit it? What is your take away message? How would you describe this theme to children? 
I felt flustered while attempting to answer each of these questions. How was I supposed to express my sense of disconnect between the growth of a person, and the growth of human kind? That I saw these two concepts as polar opposites to one another, and that I believed that the growth of one, inhibited the growth of the other? 

How do you express that concept in music? Or in a children’s story? Or in a sermon. How do I express my thoughts when they swirl around and are messy on my own head? When I can hardly make sense of them myself? 
Well, I suppose the best way to explain something that is hard for one to express, is to start at the beginning, and take one step at a time. 

Continue reading or listen to The Growth of Humanity

What's Happening January 22 - 28, 2018


Our worship service on Sunday, January 28 at 10:30 am, will be How I Became Unitarian with Carole TenBrink and music by Sandra Hunt It was a long, winding road that brought me to the Simpon St. Unitarian Church when Leonard Mason was there. Born into a strict Calvinist Dutch Reformed tradition, I took to the road as soon as I could, passing many way stations along the way, e.g. Catholicism, Buddhism, Paganism, etc. until I got to Simpson St. Now I mix it up quite a bit...into a savory witch's stew!

After the service, the Ruth di Giovanni Film Series will be showing Countdown to Zero starting at 12:00 pm. There will be a Gathering of the RE Community at 12:30 pm. The Collage Afternoon will meet from 1:00 - 4:30 pm.


For more information about these event, go to the This Month page.

The Pain of Growing (Audio Available)

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Reflection by Danielle Webber, 14 January 2018

While preparing for this service I watched a TED talks video entitled Why Comfort will ruin your life by Bill Eckstrom, a leadership coach based out of University of Nevada.

Eckstrom describes research that he did on the science of discomfort and growth. After being fired from a job where he had become comfortable and secure in upper management Eckstrom began discerning how discomfort can challenge us to grow or to shrink. His research finds that there are four environments that promote or hinder growth – what he calls growth rings, that run into each other, and overlap one another. The first environment is called stagnation – obviously not much is happening here, people are required to follow certain steps, have certain permissions, and have a consistent repetition in their lives. The last environment is Chaos – and yet again obviously no growth happens here, because there is zero possibility of input or predictability. There is no room for growth because there is no control of outcomes.

Continue reading or listen to The Pains of Growing

What's Happening January 15 - 21, 2018


Join us on Sunday, January 21 at 10:30 am, The Growth of Humanity, with Danielle Webber and music by Louise Halperin and Maider Martineau.
hu-man-i-ty ((h)yooˈmanədē
- Compassionate, sympathetic, or generous: the quality or state of being human
- The totality of human beings: the human race.
With the two very different definitions of humanity, what does it mean to explore the growth of humanity? And what really is the difference? We will be looking at how our personal and spiritual growth is different from the growth of human beings and the human race – trying to understand the pros and cons of how the growth of humans has affected humans.

January RE Lunch, 12:00 pm, Phoenix Hall
Our January RE community lunch will follow the service. The lunch is offered as a gift to the community, for which there is no cost. Your additions of nut-free desserts are always appreciated, and we will be collecting contributions to support youth and young adults traveling for spiritual and professional development.

Growing the Space Between

Reflection by Danielle Webber, 7 January 2018

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I have been doing theological reflections for much of my life. Although, of course, I would not have called it that. But ever since I was little I have been reflecting on the world, pondering the meaning of things. Trying to decide how people interacted, and why they interacted they way they did, and making connections. Growing up Unitarian Universalist, and being raised by Unitarian Universalists meant that I was always pondering, always questioning and searching for truth. I learned about the Seven Principles, probably before I turned seven. And I was always asked to connect our faith’s principles to everyday reasoning. My parents expected that I would use the principles as a tool when making decisions and I have now relied on this practice for many years. This soon became habit for me. To look for deeper meaning in everything around me. Whether it was for a school assignment, or listening to a music album I would look for more, I would seek deeper understanding. Reminiscing on a conversation I had with my best friend, struggling to remain considerate through my divorce or trying to determine how I was going to move across the country. Every aspect of my life required greater decision making, required that I look to my faith, and the ideals that I proclaimed were important to me. Although I would not have known I was doing it, I have been reflecting on theological concepts since I was a pre-teen.

Continue reading Growing the Space Between

Rev. Diane Rollert's Sabbatical

This winter, from January 1 to March 31, our minister, Rev. Diane Rollert, will be on sabbatical. Sabbatical is a time for our ministers to recharge their batteries and for our congregations to discover new ways of being. This is a time of growth for everyone.


We’re pleased to announce that Danielle Webber will be our sabbatical minister during the time that Rev. Diane is away. A lifelong Unitarian Universalist, Danielle has had much experience serving as an intern minister at the Calgary UU Congregation and at Toronto First UU, and as the summer minister at Toronto First. She serves on the Canadian Unitarian Council board and has also worked on the team that developed a new Truth and Reconciliation curriculum for the CUC.

Read more about Danielle Weber.