Author: Rev. Paul


People certainly do not all mean the same thing when they use the word “God” – whether they capitalize it or not, whether they think in singulars or plurals or weirder mysteries, whether or not they worship the essence that, for them, the word signifies, … read more.

The Unitarian Heritage of Christmas

A Sermon by the Rev. Paul Oakley
Sunday, December 12, 2021

By now we are well into the annual fiction that is the War on Christmas. Each year a certain variety of political right winger, often self-identified as evangelical protestant Christians, whip up a frenzy among … read more.

A Welcoming Congregation (capital W, capital C)

a sermon by the Reverend Paul Oakley
10:30 AM, Sunday, August 8, 2021

I became a Unitarian Universalist at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Mt. Vernon, rural southern Illinois city of about 15,000 people, surrounded by farms … read more.

Personally Significant Commitments

a sermon by the Rev. Paul Oakley
10:30 AM, Sunday, August 1, 2021

Recently, I’ve been in a bit of a genealogical mode, looking back at as many of the branches of my ancestry as I can. None of my ancestors … read more.

News Virginian, July 25, 2021

Some members of our community have been thinking conscientiously and humanely about school nondiscrimination policies while others refuse to bring logic, compassion, or humanity into their response. Some vocally use their religious beliefs to demand discrimination be enforced, while others use religion to argue that … read more.

Spiritual Development

a sermon by the Rev. Paul Oakley
10:30 AM, Sunday, July 25, 2021

A required part of every Unitarian Universalist minister’s training for ministry is Clinical Pastoral Education (abbreviated as CPE), chaplaincy training and practice, most often offered in a hospital setting. … read more.

Stewardship of Our Planet

a sermon by the Reverend Paul Oakley
10:30 AM, Sunday, July 18, 2021

Yesterday evening, I drove through the winding mountain roads between Lynchburg and Buena Vista in a thunderstorm. I’d just officiated at the wedding of our own Haley … read more.

To Be the Angel

A Prayer by the Rev. Paul Oakley

North, South, East, and West,
Perhaps an angel, visible, ahead of me,
Angels hidden by forests around me,
And everywhere God, if that’s how your heart experiences the world…
Everywhere value and worth.

Angels created by our ingenuity, desire, and … read more.

Consistently Courageous Action

a sermon by the Reverend Paul Oakley
10:30 AM, Sunday, July 11, 2021

In January 2010, I was in Chicago for an intensive month at my seminary. I lived for that month in a condo on the Chicago River … read more.