“Hope Is….” — UUS:E Virtual Sunday Service, Easter, April 12, 2020

Gathering Music (begins at 9:50 am)

Welcome and Announcements

Prelude  “You’ve Got a Friend” (Carol King, performed by Sandy Johnson)

Chalice Lighting and Opening Words “Rolling Away the Stone” (Sarah Moores Campbell)

In the tomb of the soul, we carry secret yearnings, pains, frustrations, loneliness, fears, regrets, worries.

In the tomb of the soul, we take refuge from the world and its heaviness.

In the tomb of the soul, we wrap ourselves in the security of darkness.

Sometimes this is a comfort. Sometimes it is an escape.

Sometimes it prepares us for experience. Sometimes it insulates us from life.

Sometimes this tomb-life gives us time to feel the pain of the world and reach out to heal others.

Sometimes it numbs us and locks us up with our own concerns.

In this season where light and dark balance the day, we seek balance for ourselves.

Grateful for the darkness that has nourished us, we push away the stone

and invite the light to awaken the possibilities within us and among us—possibilities for new life in ourselves and in the world.

Opening Hymn “Lo, the Earth Awakes Again”

Lo, the earth awakes again — Alleluia!
From the winter’s bond and pain.
Alleluia! Bring we leaf and flower and spray — Alleluia!
to adorn this happy day. Alleluia!

Once again the word comes true,
Alleluia! All the earth shall be made new. Alleluia!
Now the dark, cold days are o’er, Alleluia!
Spring and gladness are before. Alleluia!

Change, then, mourning into praise, Alleluia!
And, for dirges, anthems raise. Alleluia!
How our spirits soar and sing, Alleluia!
How our hearts leap with the spring! Alleluia!

Time with Gina  “Hope Is….”

Music “Crowded Table” (The Highwomen, performed by the UUS:E Children’s Choir)

Joys and Concerns

Musical Meditation


This morning and throughout the week we’re dedicating our offering to Hartford Deportation Defense’s Greater Hartford Immigration Fund. Hartford Deportation Defense (HDD) is a group of Hartford-area neighbors who work to support families directly impacted by the US Government’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement deportation operations. HDD is led by immigrants and their allies, seeking to dismantle the deportation machine and resisting the mass criminalization of black and brown people. The Greater Hartford Immigration Fund, which supports families impacted by deportation proceedings by helping to pay their legal fees, is also being used during the Covid19 pandemic to secure food for impacted families in the greater Hartford region, as well as to fund a network of impacted people who are producing facemasks to share within the community.

First Offering Piece “Psalm 19″ (Music by Elana Arian, performed by Sharon Gunderson)

May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart
be acceptable to you,
Adonai, my Rock and my Redeemer.
(Yih’-yu l’-ra-tzon im-rei fi,
V’-heg-yon li-bi l’-fa-ne-cha
A-do-nai, tzu-ri, v’-go-a-li)
Second Offering Piece  “Gigue” from  Partita in E for Violin Solo (J.S. Bach, performed by Sharon Gunderson)

Homily “Hope Is….” (Rev. Josh Pawelek)

Music “What Does the World Require of You?” (Jim Strathdee, adapted by Pawel Jura)

Closing Hymn “O Day of Light and Gladness”

O day of light and gladness, of prophecy and song,
what thoughts within us waken, what hallowed mem’ries throng!
The soul’s horizon widens, past, present, future blend;
and rises on our vision the life that has no end.

Earth feels the season’s joyance; from mountain range to sea
the tides of life are flowing, fresh, manifold, and free.
In valley and on upland, by forest pathways dim,
all nature lifts in chorus the resurrection hymn.

O Dawn of life eternal, to thee our hearts up-raise
the Easter song of gladness, the Passover of praise.
Thine are the many mansions, the dead die not to thee,
who fillest from thy fullness time and eternity.

Extinguishing the Chalice

Closing Circle

May faith in the spirit of life

And hope for the community of earth

And love of the light in each other

Be ours now, and in all the days to come.

Virtual Coffee Hour / Zoom Chat