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The Winchester Unitarian Society is a strong and vital Unitarian Universalist congregation with a long history of fellowship and active community involvement. We welcome people from Winchester and all its surrounding communities – our membership draws from throughout the Mystic Valley.
Sundays are the heart of a vibrant congregational life for people of all ages. At 10:00, Family Worship begins in the Chapel: a special 20-minute service for families with young children. At 10:30, we enjoy all ages worship in the Sanctuary with story, sermon, and song. At 10:45 adults continue in worship while children and their teachers explore and learn together in our vibrant and growing Religious Education program. After the service and classes, all generations gather for conversation and community in our social hour, and at 4:30 our high school youth convene activities and service.
We have a strong commitment to the development of children and youth. Our children’s program, led by our dynamic lifespan religious educator Rebecca Kelley-Morgan, engages children from preschool and up in active learning, community building, and spiritual development. We also offer a Coming-of-Age program called F8th in Action to our 8th graders, and a comprehensive sexuality education program, Our Whole Lives, for our 7th graders. Our Whole Lives is also available to 7th graders whose parents do not attend Winchester Unitarian Society. Our youth ministry, includes a high school youth group (WUSYG) which has over 50 members. This ministry is a source of congregational pride, and welcomes the participation of all youth who identify with WUSYG’s values and its dedication to service.
And yet, our organization is about so much more than what we do on Sundays. It is a spiritual home to more than 400 adults, youth, and children, who engage in learning, service, and spirituality throughout the week. Covenant Groups, Adult Programs, Support Groups, and Committees convene each week, offering opportunities for spiritual deepening, leadership, and social change. Our music program, led by music director John Kramer, not only provides inspiring and beautiful music for our worships – but also actively engages children and adults in the joy of singing. Our Pastoral Care ministries comfort those who are going through tough times in life, and our Grief Ministries reach out to the bereaved. We are a community that companions its members though life’s joys and celebrations as well as its sorrows – we help one another live lives of integrity, service, and joy, from birth to death.
We are a justice-seeking, community-serving congregation. The Winchester Unitarian Society received the Bennett Award for Congregation Action on Human Justice and Social Action for our hands-on response to Hurricane Katrina. We are actively engaged with the Unitarian Universalist Urban Ministry in Roxbury, offering tutoring, reliable presence, and a school vacation activities camp for neighborhood children. We’re in active relationship with a partner church, a Unitarian church in Marosvasarhely, in the Transylvanian region of Romania. We enjoyed a visit from Marosvasarhely youth and adults in 2008 and 2015, and a group from our congregation visited them in July of 2010.
We intentionally affirm the full participation of people of all sexual orientations and gender identities. We were early adopters of the Welcoming Congregation program, passing it with a unanimous vote in 1998. We enjoyed a vibrant, youth-led presence with a float in the 2009 Boston Pride parade – it had a construction theme and read “We Are Building a Church Without Walls.” And we continue this work today with an intentionally gender inclusive bathroom, dedicated in the fall of 2015.
We are building our church, together. We are fortunate to have an engaged and engaging minister, and an excellent staff to coordinate our wide variety of programs. The core strength of the congregation is its membership – a group with a diversity of beliefs and a unity of purpose, a group committed to a transformative religious community based in freedom, justice, and love. As we work to become an even more welcoming, more socially engaged, more spiritually-alive, and greener congregation, we are planning for who we will be by the end of our 150th anniversary in 2016.
Come, bring your yearnings, bring your hope, bring your best self, and join us in writing the story of Winchester Unitarian Society.
Mission and Vision
For Information on Our Committees:
Committee on Shared Ministry
Employee Relations Committee
Finance and Stewardship
Growth and Learning
Youth Advisory Committee
There are a variety of ways you can become more involved in the life of the church. Subscribe to our weekly e-newsletter to learn about opportunities throughout the year: e-mail or call our Office to sign up.
Check out these sections of our website to learn about just a few of the many ways you can get involved beyond attending Sunday worship at Winchester Unitarian Society:
Singing in the choirs – for children and adults
Attending workshops, movies, book groups, or other adult programs
Joining a covenant group
Enrolling your kids, or teaching, in Children’s Religious Education
Becoming part of the high school youth group, or supporting their activities
Engaging in social action and community service
Getting involved with our environmental programs and initiatives
Finding support in our Grief Group
Ushering and greeting on Sunday mornings
Bringing refreshments for social hour - Sign up at www.takethemameal.com
Joining committees and task forces
Our staff and ministers are available to speak with you about your gifts and interests, and help you find fulfilling ways to get involved at Winchester Unitarian Society. Don’t hesitate to contact us!