Ceremonies and Traditions at Lakeshore Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
We are frequently asked if Unitarian Universalists have “sacraments” as many other faiths do. Unitarian Universalists do not have sacraments, per se, where a clergyperson acts as a conduit to a sacred experience. We do, however, have several recurring rituals, services and traditions which are joyful celebrations of this community’s life together.
We hold an annual Flower Communion service each May. This celebration was originated in 1923 by Dr. Norbert Capek, founder of the modern Unitarian movement in Czechoslovakia. As they did in Prague, on the last weekend before our summer program begins, we participate in this colorful ritual by exchanging flowers with one another, giving concrete expression to the humanity-affirming principles of our liberal faith.
We are also hallowing the memory of one of the martyrs of our faith. When the Nazis took control of Prague in 1940, they found Dr. Capek’s gospel of the inherent worth and beauty of every human person to be-as Nazi court records show– “…too dangerous to the Reich [for him] to be allowed to live.” Dr. Capek was sent to Dachau, where he was killed the next year during a Nazi “medical experiment.” This gentle man suffered a cruel death, but his message of human hope and decency lives on through his Flower Communion, which is widely celebrated among Unitarian Universalists today. It is a noble and meaning-filled ritual, which helps us remember the principles and dreams for which he died.
There is no joy quite like that of celebrating a child’s entrance into a family. Many families choose to participate in a public ritual where the Fellowship community officially welcomes the child and where the naming of the child is uplifted. Most often, these Dedication ceremonies are conducted during our regular Sunday services with sponsors and extended family present. In accordance with our beliefs, each ceremony is tailored to match the family’s spiritual values and hopes for the child. This link provides more detail on the Unitarian Universalist Child Dedication traditions.
Memorial Services and Funeral
Memorial services and funerals are an important way to say goodbye to loved ones. These are planned by the family members and officiant to honor the memory of the person who is deceased.
Weddings and Commitment Ceremonies
"What greater thing is there for two human souls than to feel that they are joined together—to strengthen each other in all labor, to minister to each other in all sorrow, to share with each other in all gladness, to be one with each other in the silent, unspoken memories?” – George Eliot
Wedding services are a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the love of two individuals who have chosen to come together in marriage. Because of our strong respect for each person's beliefs and values, each wedding is custom-crafted with a couple to reflect their personalities and relationship. This respect and our flexibility enable Unitarian Universalists Lay Ministers to perform interfaith weddings, atheist weddings, and weddings for those with Unitarian Universalism's diverse beliefs.
In addition to blessing heterosexual unions, Unitarian Universalist congregations joyfully embrace and perform same-sex marriages. Unitarian Universalists affirm the inherent worth and dignity of all people and have a long history of promoting equal rights of people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ).
Lakeshore Unitarian Universalist Fellowship (LUUF) provides a beautiful, serene and historic church setting to celebrate your wedding or commitment ceremony. We invite you to join us on any Sunday morning for service at 10:00am to experience the life and energy of our congregation and uniqueness of our historic building and welcoming Fellowship.
The first step to planning a ceremony at LUUF is to contact one of our Lay Ministers, to schedule a time to discuss your plans and arrange a date for your ceremony. LUUF Lay Ministers will be happy to work with couples to plan their ceremonies to include special readings, rituals or music of your design.
Typical Unitarian Universalist wedding and commitment services focus on the couple getting married and on their friends and family who will support them as they become a new household, a new family. Unitarian Universalist weddings reflect the personalities of the couple while upholding the deep Unitarian Universalist belief in the inherent value and worth of every human being.
Please note that like all Unitarian Universalist Congregations , we welcome participation by all persons without regard to race, ethnicity, gender, disability, sexual orientation, age, language, citizenship status, economic status, or national origin and without requiring adherence to any particular interpretation of religion or to any particular religious belief or creed. Our congregation actively supports marriage equality.
Lakeshore Unitarian Universalist Fellwhip
Join Us in Prayer
All Souls Day
Vigil of Light
Remembering Our Saints
At the beginning of each program year in September, we gather in a single service for all ages and share a much-appreciated UU tradition that honors the diversity of experiences we have enjoyed in the preceding summer months. Each congregant who chooses to participate brings a bit of water to this service as a symbol of their summer journey and experiences. These small amounts of water are poured together into a single bowl, symbolizing the beautiful and abundant ways our lives are intertwined. The sharing is always both meaningful and fun. (Typical examples: “This is water from the lake in front of our family cottage; Or, “This is water from my backyard hose where we had lots of water fights.”) We always leave this service with joy and gratitude for the beloved community that is ours.
A Celebration of life and death. An annual rememberance of the lives loved and lost. A celebration of the memories of members, family and friends, who were our saints, by enriching our lives with their presence.
Annually we celebrate the darkness and the promise of the Winter Solstice. Included in this service is time for silence as well as time for joyful noise.
Our traditional Christmas sing-along service and celebration of the season includes traditional readings, stories and carols.