Speaker: Joseph Bednarik

Religious Rodeo (Audio)

Bull Whips, Throwing Stars, and a Volunteer from the Audience

Worship Leader: Ruth Richards
With the UUCWI Chalice Choir

The traveling showman was larger than life: A world-record knife thrower, a Vietnam vet with a wooden leg, and fresh from a weekend at the legendary Gerry Rodeo. This … read more.

 Specialize in the Impossible (Audio)

In this bright dark world of beauty and tumult, poet Theodore Roethke said, “What we need is more people who specialize in the impossible.” Why would anyone bother with the impossible? This sermon explores those noteworthy realms of possible and impossible, and what powers we need to harness to become that specialist our world so desperately needs.Worship Leader: Mavis Cauffman

The Theory and Practice of Zax (Audio)

In his brilliant story “The Zax,” Dr. Seuss takes fundamentalism to its logical extreme when a North-Going Zax and a South-Going Zax meet on a path and neither will step aside to allow the other to pass. As these Zax stand puffed-chest and glowering, let’s go out to visit them — to discover whether UU values might help loosen this wet-knot situation.Joseph Bednarik is a regular guest speaker at UUCWI, and serves as the pulpit assistant at Quimper UU Fellowship in Port Townsend. Worship Leader: Sandy Welch; Special Music: Ken Merrell

Figure Out Something (Audio)

In his poem “Commuting,” Clemens Starck writes: “My son, he’s ten, he wants to know what we’re here for.” During the poet’s commute home from a long day at work, he challenges himself to “figure out something,” and he has a twenty-mile drive to do it.

We’ve all been where that little boy is: Profound wonderment about our place in the Universe. We’ve all been where that commuter is: Trying to figure out something. This sermon explores our own commute through life, the questions that arise, and the answers we may realize. Or not.

Special guest Clemens Starck will interweave his poems throughout the sermon.

Worship Associate: Katy Shaner

The Altar of Iron and Light (Audio)

Within the United Nations building in New York City is a meditation room that contains a massive block of iron ore illuminated from above by a single beam of light. In the midst of the world’s Alpha City, this simple room is dedicated to silence and thoughtful introspection. The famed UN Secretary General Dag Hammarskjöld designed the room, and he wrote, “This small room [is] a place where the doors may be open to the infinite lands of thought and prayer.” This sermon enters that room of iron and light to see where the infinite may lead.

Guest Speaker: Joseph Bednarik
Worship Leader: Mavis Cauffman
Guest Musician: Siri Bardarson

Let Us Pray (Text)

Guest Speaker: Joseph Bednarik
The noun “prayer” and the verb “to pray” seem to be hot-button words within Unitarian Universalist congregations. Why is this? This sermon will explore the ancient practice of prayer, and provide personal examples of how prayer works in the modern world.

Special Music: UUCWI Chalice Choir
Worship Leader: Mavis Cauffman

Faithfully Creedless (Audio)

Guest speaker: Joseph Bednarik
Unitarian Universalism is considered a “creedless” religion. What on earth does that mean, and how does one practice such a faith? This sermon follows the lead of Socrates who, because he “knew nothing except the fact of his ignorance,” kept asking questions–all in hopes of finding a suitable answer.

Joseph Bednarik serves as the Pulpit Assistant at Quimper Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Port Townsend. His day-job is as Co-Publisher of Copper Canyon Press, a nonprofit literary publisher dedicated to poetry.

Worship Leader: Ken Merrell

What the Hell? (Audio)

Guest Speaker: Joseph Bednarik
From the cover of Time magazine to the best-sellers list, a place called “Hell” is consistently in the public eye. What is hell, who’s there, and why? Together we’ll explore this most fascinating of theological places, while keeping the second U of Unitarian-Universalism pressed close to our hearts.

Joseph Bednarik serves as the Pulpit Assistant at Quimper Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Port Townsend. His day-job is as Co-Publisher of Copper Canyon Press, a nonprofit literary publisher dedicated to poetry.