Married, Universalist style

When I commented at my “Wedding in the Universalist Tradition” site [link down: 21 April 2005] that the 1839 Menzies Rayner service has “little to commend itself for use today” I was clearly mistaken. Ths evening, I will officiate the marriage of two church members with an abridgement of this rite, which you can read… Continue reading Married, Universalist style

A psalm (or canticle) to sing

For a while now, I’ve been looking for a modern set of metrical psalms and canticles — Biblical psalms and songs rearranged so they can be sung to “hymn tunes”; in fact, many of today’s hymn tunes startes for psalms, like Old 100th — and have now found a source: A New Metrical Psalter by… Continue reading A psalm (or canticle) to sing

Categorized as Hymns

Definite Christian worship?

Is there a definite form of Universalist or Unitarian Christian worship? Note I wrote, definite because I won’t venture into the troubled waters of figuring out if there is a definitive form. But the more I compare orders of Christian worship from the Universalist and Unitarian traditions, the more unity I see, especially in those… Continue reading Definite Christian worship?

Categorized as Worship

When to wear clericals

Back from Peter Boullata’s ordination, which went well, with a sermon from UUA President Bill Sinkford, a charge from Weston First Parish’s senior minister, Tom Wintle; the imposition of hands, led by WFP’s associate minister, Sue Spencer; and a wonderful choir. May Peter’s years of pastoral ministry be long and prosperous. A small ecclesiastic matter.… Continue reading When to wear clericals

Categorized as Vestments

Ascension Day

This has been historically an important day for Universalists because of Christ’s promise that “I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” (John 12:32, NRSV) THROUGH thy most dearly beloved Son Jesus Christ our Lord; who, after his most glorious resurrection, manifestly appeared to all his apostles, and… Continue reading Ascension Day

Categorized as Worship

Build a Profession, part one

In his Universalist’s Book of Reference (1901 ed., “revised and enlarged”) E. E. Guild was able to identify twelve distinct theological propositions in the Winchester Profession, though I’m not quite as hopeful as he was, neither would I call all twelve essential to Universalism. Indeed, I believe the first edition of Guild’s work come out… Continue reading Build a Profession, part one

Categorized as Universalism

What to profess?

I never thought so many people would take an interest in this humble blog. Thank you. Some of the well-wishing inquiries came with the question, “how do I get one of my own?” I’m not using any web-logging software; just this CSS (thanks, free-of-charge, to Firda Beka at [site defunct], modified a bit). In… Continue reading What to profess?

Henry Noble Couden

Well, it seems I’ve been quoted in the Washington Post, too. Nice. Before Sunday worship. Part of the reason (and in addition to what I wrote yesterday) I’ll be using military allusions in the sermon, naturally enough, is because Monday is Memorial Day. If this never-ending rain and glum lifts — even if for a… Continue reading Henry Noble Couden


A colleague — he doesn’t use his name on the blog that I saw; perhaps that’s an emerging blog convention — linked to me, and I’ll point you to his, too: Across, Beyond, Thought. I wonder if there are more of us sharing online. Of course, I’m thinking about the Sunday sermon; it is entitled,… Continue reading Victory?