Ministerial Musings

There are a few ideas brewing in the worship committee and in my own head that I want to share with you. It is my hope that worship at Tapestry is a reflection of what matters most to our members. Only a small group of people is involved in the planning and execution of worship, but your input is always helpful. And if you have any questions about why we do what we do, that conversation is always welcome.

First, we may shift our monthly worship themes. For the past few years we have used themes of general theological or ethical concepts. There are a few different calendars for these themes. We have been using a set that comes out of Denver. Themes are helpful because they provide a framework and guide me into exploring areas that I might otherwise have shied away from or just not thought of. For next year, I am thinking of using our Seven Principles and Six Sources as our monthly topics. If you are not familiar with our Seven Principles and Six Sources, you can find more information here. They are not a dogma, but a set of ideas that we have agreed reflect our values and the root of our Unitarian Universalist tradition. Since so many in our community are new to Unitarian Universalism and the Principles and Sources are a little cumbersome, it seems like it would be worth our time to focus on them for a year. That decision has not been fully made, and I would love to get your feedback.

Also in the worship arena, there are two upcoming opportunities for you to get more involved. First, in July I will offer a four-part workshop that guides participants through writing a sermon. This workshop will also explore what worship means in our faith tradition, since that is the foundation for how to write a sermon. By the end of the four sessions, all participants will have completed a full sermon.

In a similar arena, it is time to rebuild our Worship Associate Team. Every year a new team of Worship Associates is selected and trained. With a team of eight Worship Associates, volunteers end up leading worship about once every other month. There are a few necessary skills. Worship Associates should be somewhat comfortable speaking in front of a crowd and some experience is helpful. They should be willing to reflect on the topic of the week and to write a paragraph or two of their own thoughts. Worship Associates should be willing to learn skills with the team and be very dependable. It is a significant and rewarding leadership opportunity for a team of Tapestry members. Soon we will make applications available. I hope to train the new team in August.

Rev. Kent Doss


Minister's Seminars


Monday, June 11, 6:30 - 8:00 pmHow Emotions Are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain by Lisa Feldman Barrett

The science of emotion is in the midst of a revolution. Leading the charge is psychologist and neuroscientist Lisa Feldman Barrett, whose research overturns the long-standing belief that emotions are automatic, universal, and hardwired. Instead, Barrett shows, we construct each instance of emotion through a unique interplay of brain, body, and culture. Please read the book in advance of the meeting to fully participate in the discussion.

Email Julia Rampone at for the meeting location

Monday, July 9, 6:30 - 8:00 pm — Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout

This novel by Elizabeth Strout presents a portrait of the title character and a number of recurring characters in the coastal town of Crosby, Maine. It takes the form of 13 short stories that interweave to create the full picture of a complicated, imperfect main character. It won the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Please read the book in advance of the meeting to fully participate in the discussion.

Email Julia Rampone at for the meeting location