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Latest episodes from WellSprings Congregation

11-28-2021 This Joy - "Joy In My Heart" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 29, 2021 27:53

Beth begins this week by talking about the concept of "deserving joy." She remembers certain moments in her childhood where she experienced huge amounts of joy, and worrying that those feelings may have been lost. She reminds us that paying attention can lead to joy, but being busy, stressed, or not in the moment can cloud that feeling over. It's important to not ignore the bad things going on in the world, but - as Beth says - to grab a bucket and sing along with others as you work together to put the fire out.

11-28-2021 This Joy - "Joy In My Heart" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 29, 2021

Beth begins this week by talking about the concept of "deserving joy." She remembers certain moments in her childhood where she experienced huge amounts of joy, and worrying that those feelings may have been lost. She reminds us that paying attention can lead to joy, but being busy, stressed, or not in the moment can cloud that feeling over. It's important to not ignore the bad things going on in the world, but - as Beth says - to grab a bucket and sing along with others as you work together to put the fire out.

11-21-2021 - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 21, 2021 35:09

We welcome five different speakers from our congregation - ranging in age from 9 to 96 - to answer the question from Mary Oliver: "Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?"

11-21-2021 - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 21, 2021

We welcome five different speakers from our congregation - ranging in age from 9 to 96 - to answer the question from Mary Oliver: "Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?"

11-14-2021 This Joy - "Joy and Sorrow - Caring Companions" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 14, 2021 25:15

Kathleen begins with a story about a child who knocks down a younger playmate, and who is asked an important question about kindness. She asks us to consider what happens when we experience joy. She reminds us of the parable of not hiding your light under a bushel, because the world needs all the light we can get right now. She offers us some advice from a Buddhist monk about how to find joy amidst sorrow. We also take a moment to remember a departed friend.

11-14-2021 This Joy - "Joy and Sorrow - Caring Companions" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 14, 2021

Kathleen begins with a story about a child who knocks down a younger playmate, and who is asked an important question about kindness. She asks us to consider what happens when we experience joy. She reminds us of the parable of not hiding your light under a bushel, because the world needs all the light we can get right now. She offers us some advice from a Buddhist monk about how to find joy amidst sorrow. We also take a moment to remember a departed friend.

11-7-2021 This Joy - "Falling" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 7, 2021 18:29

WellSprings Sermon Studio

11-7-2021 This Joy - "Falling" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 7, 2021

WellSprings Sermon Studio

10-31-2021 God Laughs - "Their Promises" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 3, 2021 15:52

Ken beings by telling a story from when he was three years old, and he made a funny comment about an older person. Our message series is called "God Laughs," based on the Yiddish saying "We plan, God laughs," and there is nothing more disruptive to our plans than death. He shares thoughts about a book called "No Cure For Being Human," written by a woman who discovered she had stage 4 cancer at age 35; and a story about a quote he saw on in a hospital chapel.

10-31-2021 God Laughs - "Their Promises" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Nov 3, 2021

Ken beings by telling a story from when he was three years old, and he made a funny comment about an older person. Our message series is called "God Laughs," based on the Yiddish saying "We plan, God laughs," and there is nothing more disruptive to our plans than death. He shares thoughts about a book called "No Cure For Being Human," written by a woman who discovered she had stage 4 cancer at age 35; and a story about a quote he saw on in a hospital chapel.

10-24-2021 God Laughs - "Melting Ground" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Oct 28, 2021 30:11

Beth begins by sharing a story from when she was a child and she experienced a near drowning.  She talks about how she thought she'd been standing on solid ground, but that it seemed to melt beneath her feet. This pandemic has felt very much like the sensation of the ground beneath your feet dissolving. She shares a story about a person refusing to leave a flooded home because they're clinging to a belief that they'll be saved. Finally, she reminds us of the importance of the fourth UU principle.

10-24-2021 God Laughs - "Melting Ground" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Oct 28, 2021

Beth begins by sharing a story from when she was a child and she experienced a near drowning.  She talks about how she thought she'd been standing on solid ground, but that it seemed to melt beneath her feet. This pandemic has felt very much like the sensation of the ground beneath your feet dissolving. She shares a story about a person refusing to leave a flooded home because they're clinging to a belief that they'll be saved. Finally, she reminds us of the importance of the fourth UU principle.

10-17-2021 God Laughs - "By Name" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Oct 19, 2021 23:33

Rev. Lee begins by talking about the saga of the Maryland zebras on the loose. She then shares a story about a friend's baby learning the words of things in the world - dog, ant, goat, fish - and how naming these things once calmed him down in the middle of a bad crying fit. This is actually a powerful tool for bringing someone out of an anxiety attack. She talks a bit about what it means to heal, and how that process will look different for everyone.

10-17-2021 God Laughs - "By Name" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Oct 19, 2021

Rev. Lee begins by talking about the saga of the Maryland zebras on the loose. She then shares a story about a friend's baby learning the words of things in the world - dog, ant, goat, fish - and how naming these things once calmed him down in the middle of a bad crying fit. This is actually a powerful tool for bringing someone out of an anxiety attack. She talks a bit about what it means to heal, and how that process will look different for everyone.

10-10-2021 God Laughs - "Listening Beyond the Laughs" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Oct 10, 2021 25:46

This week, Rev. Ken begins by talking about the concept of "yucking someone else's yum." He also reflects on the meaning of nervous laughter and sarcasm, and shares a story about a time when he laughed nervously while making a 911 call. A concept called "The four horsemen of relationship apocalypse" is shown, as is a story about a man who suffered from OCD as a child.

10-10-2021 God Laughs - "Listening Beyond the Laughs" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Oct 10, 2021

This week, Rev. Ken begins by talking about the concept of "yucking someone else's yum." He also reflects on the meaning of nervous laughter and sarcasm, and shares a story about a time when he laughed nervously while making a 911 call. A concept called "The four horsemen of relationship apocalypse" is shown, as is a story about a man who suffered from OCD as a child.

10-3-2021 God Laughs - "Under the Rainbow" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Oct 4, 2021 25:17

WellSprings Sermon Studio

10-3-2021 God Laughs - "Under the Rainbow" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Oct 4, 2021

WellSprings Sermon Studio

9-26-2021 God Laughs - "Held Together" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Sep 28, 2021 26:54

This week, Rev. Lee shares stories of things that are held together in unconventional ways. She shares stories from a colleague who have a late 90s Suburban - now held together with duct tape as more and more systems fail over the years - and a colleague who keeps what remnants she still has of her baby blanket in a small ceramic container. We find ways of holding things together when they mean something to us.

9-26-2021 God Laughs - "Held Together" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Sep 28, 2021

This week, Rev. Lee shares stories of things that are held together in unconventional ways. She shares stories from a colleague who have a late 90s Suburban - now held together with duct tape as more and more systems fail over the years - and a colleague who keeps what remnants she still has of her baby blanket in a small ceramic container. We find ways of holding things together when they mean something to us.

9-19-2021 - God Laughs, "Chances Are" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Sep 19, 2021 20:19


This week, our Message begins with a story about Beethoven. Rev. Ken remarks on how apropos our new message series, “God Laughs,” is this week, since we are not gathered together in Bell Hall like we were just a week ago. This message seried gets its name from a Yiddish proverb “We plan, God laughs.” He talks about the importance of keeping covenants with one another, even though we realize that plans may fall through. This was demonstrated recently when Steve Burns, host of Blues Clues, made a video to thank his fans years after he abruptly left the beloved TV show.


9-19-2021 - God Laughs, "Chances Are" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Sep 19, 2021


This week, our Message begins with a story about Beethoven. Rev. Ken remarks on how apropos our new message series, “God Laughs,” is this week, since we are not gathered together in Bell Hall like we were just a week ago. This message seried gets its name from a Yiddish proverb “We plan, God laughs.” He talks about the importance of keeping covenants with one another, even though we realize that plans may fall through. This was demonstrated recently when Steve Burns, host of Blues Clues, made a video to thank his fans years after he abruptly left the beloved TV show.


9-12-2021 WellCome Back Sunday - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Sep 15, 2021 19:01

Rev. Lee begins by remembering how much has changed since the beginning of the pandemic, and holding space for the people we’ve lost. She also talks about the song we sang during service, “Hard Times.” It tells us that the answer to hard times is to dance. Rev. Ken also speaks. He shares a post from an Episcopal priest who commented on their own husband’s twitter post thinking he was a “random stranger,” for lack of paying attention. He emphasizes that we are not inherently flawed, but originally blessed. He also explains how we can continue a beloved ritual even during a pandemic.

9-12-2021 WellCome Back Sunday - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Sep 15, 2021

Rev. Lee begins by remembering how much has changed since the beginning of the pandemic, and holding space for the people we’ve lost. She also talks about the song we sang during service, “Hard Times.” It tells us that the answer to hard times is to dance. Rev. Ken also speaks. He shares a post from an Episcopal priest who commented on their own husband’s twitter post thinking he was a “random stranger,” for lack of paying attention. He emphasizes that we are not inherently flawed, but originally blessed. He also explains how we can continue a beloved ritual even during a pandemic.

9-5-2021 Sppiritflix - "Happy" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Sep 8, 2021 16:04


Chris begins this week's service by talking about the nature of happiness. He highlights the Kurt Vonnegut quote "If this isn't nice, what is?" He also brings up the concept of tragic optimism, which means being clear-eyed about a situation, while remaining hopeful. He concludes with The Five Remembrances of Buddhism. He goes through each and explains how - even though some of them might seem gloomy on the surface - they can hold the key to happiness.


9-5-2021 Sppiritflix - "Happy" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Sep 8, 2021


Chris begins this week's service by talking about the nature of happiness. He highlights the Kurt Vonnegut quote "If this isn't nice, what is?" He also brings up the concept of tragic optimism, which means being clear-eyed about a situation, while remaining hopeful. He concludes with The Five Remembrances of Buddhism. He goes through each and explains how - even though some of them might seem gloomy on the surface - they can hold the key to happiness.


8-29-2021 SpiritFlix - "Minari" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Aug 29, 2021 24:11

This week, Rev. Ken begins by talking about he voices of loved ones on answering machines. Minari is a movie about a Korean family's move to rural Arkansas during the 80s, and Rev. Ken remarks on how poignant it was to watch this movie during the pandemic, when hatred against people of Asian descent is still continuing. Ultimately, this is a movie about connective love in the midst of discouraging circumstances Also shared is a Twitter thread that went viral, full of people encountering lost loved ones on the images in Google Maps.

8-29-2021 SpiritFlix - "Minari" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Aug 29, 2021

This week, Rev. Ken begins by talking about he voices of loved ones on answering machines. Minari is a movie about a Korean family's move to rural Arkansas during the 80s, and Rev. Ken remarks on how poignant it was to watch this movie during the pandemic, when hatred against people of Asian descent is still continuing. Ultimately, this is a movie about connective love in the midst of discouraging circumstances Also shared is a Twitter thread that went viral, full of people encountering lost loved ones on the images in Google Maps.

8-22-2021 Spiritflix - "The White Lotus" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Aug 24, 2021 32:24

Rev. Lee begins with speaking about last week’s in-person service. She also speaks to the times we’re living in right now: parents deciding what to do about school, and all of us watching the scenes in Afghanistan unfold. In talking about this week’s series, The White Lotus, she remarks upon the different ways in which we try to escape. Sometimes they’re healthy and sometimes they’re unhealthy – but all are temporary. She asks us to consider how we react when we are faced with uncomfortable situations.

8-22-2021 Spiritflix - "The White Lotus" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Aug 24, 2021

Rev. Lee begins with speaking about last week’s in-person service. She also speaks to the times we’re living in right now: parents deciding what to do about school, and all of us watching the scenes in Afghanistan unfold. In talking about this week’s series, The White Lotus, she remarks upon the different ways in which we try to escape. Sometimes they’re healthy and sometimes they’re unhealthy – but all are temporary. She asks us to consider how we react when we are faced with uncomfortable situations.

8-8-2021 Spiritflix - "Avatar: The Last Airbender" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Aug 17, 2021 33:24

This week, Carol Breslin, our YouthSpirit Director talks about the themes and meanings in the much-loved Nickelodeon series, Avatar: the Last Airbender. Miss Carol and the YouthSpirit kids have been watching this series together throughout the summer, and linking the 7 UU Principles to lessons learned in each episode.

8-8-2021 Spiritflix - "Avatar: The Last Airbender" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Aug 17, 2021

This week, Carol Breslin, our YouthSpirit Director talks about the themes and meanings in the much-loved Nickelodeon series, Avatar: the Last Airbender. Miss Carol and the YouthSpirit kids have been watching this series together throughout the summer, and linking the 7 UU Principles to lessons learned in each episode.

8-1-2021 Spiritflix - "The Wizard of Oz" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Aug 3, 2021 28:04

Lee revisits one of the classics this week by talking about The Wizard of Oz. At its heart, this is a story about a girl who experiences trauma (literal head trauma, in her case) and spends much of the rest of the story trying to determine when and how things will feel safe again. This is very much what we’ve experienced in the pandemic. She also talks about the meaning of the Arabic word “Inshallah” and shares a poem contemplating its meaning.

8-1-2021 Spiritflix - "The Wizard of Oz" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Aug 3, 2021

Lee revisits one of the classics this week by talking about The Wizard of Oz. At its heart, this is a story about a girl who experiences trauma (literal head trauma, in her case) and spends much of the rest of the story trying to determine when and how things will feel safe again. This is very much what we’ve experienced in the pandemic. She also talks about the meaning of the Arabic word “Inshallah” and shares a poem contemplating its meaning.

7-25-2021 SpiritFlix - "Grease" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Jul 25, 2021 22:07

Rodney talks about the first time he saw the movie Grease on vacation with a friend when he was 14. He mentions that when we are on vacation, we’re almost like different people. We go outside of our comfort zone, and we’re more present and mindful in our day to day because everything is new. Grease is a movie about a romance that began on a vacation. While some parts of the movie may seem silly, especially now, at its heart, it’s a movie about two people working on a relationship. They each discover new aspects of themselves as they build a meaningful partnership.

7-25-2021 SpiritFlix - "Grease" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Jul 25, 2021

Rodney talks about the first time he saw the movie Grease on vacation with a friend when he was 14. He mentions that when we are on vacation, we’re almost like different people. We go outside of our comfort zone, and we’re more present and mindful in our day to day because everything is new. Grease is a movie about a romance that began on a vacation. While some parts of the movie may seem silly, especially now, at its heart, it’s a movie about two people working on a relationship. They each discover new aspects of themselves as they build a meaningful partnership.

7-18-2021 SpiritFlix - The Good Place - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Jul 20, 2021 22:21

This week, Bev Fox talks to us about "The Good Place," which is a show about life after death. Bev talks about how summer is a particularly tough time for her in terms of mental health, but while watching, she remembers the message of the show: “What matters isn’t if people are good or bad, it matters if they’re better today than yesterday." Just like in real life, characters grapple with finding happiness in what feels like pandemonium. To end, Bev leads us through a quick mindfulness exercise

7-18-2021 SpiritFlix - The Good Place - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Jul 20, 2021

This week, Bev Fox talks to us about "The Good Place," which is a show about life after death. Bev talks about how summer is a particularly tough time for her in terms of mental health, but while watching, she remembers the message of the show: “What matters isn’t if people are good or bad, it matters if they’re better today than yesterday." Just like in real life, characters grapple with finding happiness in what feels like pandemonium. To end, Bev leads us through a quick mindfulness exercise

7-11-2021 SpiritFlix: Die Hard - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Jul 13, 2021 22:13

Rev. Ken begins with a fun explanation about why Die Hard is a Christmas movie. He explains that this isn’t just a cultural Christmas movie about a family trying to come back together to heal, it’s also a theological Christmas movie. Rev. Ken points to songs like “Oh Come Emannuel,” and “Oh Holy Night.” Rev. Ken admits that the darkness and cynicism present in the movie made a little too much sense to him when he watched it in December 2020. But he takes comfort in the fact that what saves the day in the real world isn’t just one guy riding in – it’s lots of people working together.

7-11-2021 SpiritFlix: Die Hard - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Jul 13, 2021

Rev. Ken begins with a fun explanation about why Die Hard is a Christmas movie. He explains that this isn’t just a cultural Christmas movie about a family trying to come back together to heal, it’s also a theological Christmas movie. Rev. Ken points to songs like “Oh Come Emannuel,” and “Oh Holy Night.” Rev. Ken admits that the darkness and cynicism present in the movie made a little too much sense to him when he watched it in December 2020. But he takes comfort in the fact that what saves the day in the real world isn’t just one guy riding in – it’s lots of people working together.

7-4-2021 Spiritflix - "Ted Lasso" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Jul 4, 2021 19:05

Chris talks about the lessons we can learn from the comedy series, Ted Lasso. Beginning with a personal story about joining a soccer team, he goes on to celebrate the idea of a “beginner’s mind” as shown in the series. Have a small snack nearby for this message. There’s a bit of interaction requested.

7-4-2021 Spiritflix - "Ted Lasso" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Jul 4, 2021

Chris talks about the lessons we can learn from the comedy series, Ted Lasso. Beginning with a personal story about joining a soccer team, he goes on to celebrate the idea of a “beginner’s mind” as shown in the series. Have a small snack nearby for this message. There’s a bit of interaction requested.

6-27-2021 Spiritflix - Nomadland" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 29, 2021 31:30

Rev. Lee shares her last message from her Philadelphia home about the movie Nomadland. This film focuses on the demise of a company town after the industry supporting it shuts down. She reflects on the fact that she’s about to move into a place that once used to be a company town too. She reflects on how the story of a company town suddenly closing down speaks to our own pandemic experiences, when the things we thought would always be there were unexpectedly taken away. She also shares a mindfulness exercise from the Foothills Unitarian congregation in Colorado.

6-27-2021 Spiritflix - Nomadland" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 29, 2021

Rev. Lee shares her last message from her Philadelphia home about the movie Nomadland. This film focuses on the demise of a company town after the industry supporting it shuts down. She reflects on the fact that she’s about to move into a place that once used to be a company town too. She reflects on how the story of a company town suddenly closing down speaks to our own pandemic experiences, when the things we thought would always be there were unexpectedly taken away. She also shares a mindfulness exercise from the Foothills Unitarian congregation in Colorado.

6-20-2021 SpiritFlix - "Anna and the Apocalypse" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 22, 2021 24:53

In this week's Message, Rev. Ken tells us about a Christmas musical unlike any other: Anna and the Apocalypse. It's a zombie movie largely focused on breaking away from the old you, from your old understanding of civilization, and moving bravely into something new. He also brings up an episode of Queer Eye where Jonathan Van Ness revisits their high school, not only to help make over a beloved music teacher, but also so they can heal some past wounds suffered while discovering who they were as a person.

6-20-2021 SpiritFlix - "Anna and the Apocalypse" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 22, 2021

In this week's Message, Rev. Ken tells us about a Christmas musical unlike any other: Anna and the Apocalypse. It's a zombie movie largely focused on breaking away from the old you, from your old understanding of civilization, and moving bravely into something new. He also brings up an episode of Queer Eye where Jonathan Van Ness revisits their high school, not only to help make over a beloved music teacher, but also so they can heal some past wounds suffered while discovering who they were as a person.

6-13-2021 SpiritFlix "Exterminate All The Brutes" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 16, 2021 26:09


Rev. Ken begins this week's Message with the President’s statement about the Armenian Genocide, along with the response from the Turkish government. Many of our historical stories are difficult to reckon with, but it’s important that we’re honest about what happened, even if it’s painful. If that pain opens up a productive gap between reality and our aspirations, there can be growth and healing. Ken also shares a quote from James Baldwin about how accepting the past doesn’t mean drowning in it.


6-13-2021 SpiritFlix "Exterminate All The Brutes" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 16, 2021


Rev. Ken begins this week's Message with the President’s statement about the Armenian Genocide, along with the response from the Turkish government. Many of our historical stories are difficult to reckon with, but it’s important that we’re honest about what happened, even if it’s painful. If that pain opens up a productive gap between reality and our aspirations, there can be growth and healing. Ken also shares a quote from James Baldwin about how accepting the past doesn’t mean drowning in it.


6-6-2021 SpiritFlix "Mare of Easttown" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 15, 2021 32:25

Rev. Lee continues our SpiritFlix series with a Message about the HBO show "Mare of Easttown," much of which features our local area. In particular, she shares her thoughts about how one of the central themes of the show is how falling apart or unraveling is sometimes a part of life, as depicted in the show.

6-6-2021 SpiritFlix "Mare of Easttown" - PDF

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 15, 2021

Rev. Lee continues our SpiritFlix series with a Message about the HBO show "Mare of Easttown," much of which features our local area. In particular, she shares her thoughts about how one of the central themes of the show is how falling apart or unraveling is sometimes a part of life, as depicted in the show.

SpiritFlix - Soul "Holding Tightly and Holding Lightly" - Audio

Play Episode Listen Later Jun 1, 2021 27:04

Ken introduces a "gifts discernment" chart which asks you to plot things you both like and dislike, and things you're good at and things you aren't. This connects with our first SpiritFlix movie of this year: Soul. A movie which explores this very question. What are you good at, and what what brings you vitality. Holding tightly versus holding lightly. This is demonstrated in the movie by showing souls in a flow state, versus souls in a state of fixation. What happens if we hold onto experiences, even positive ones, too tightly? What happens if we hold them with a lighter touch.

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