Life songs

by Rev. Jennifer Brooks. The outpouring of stories and music in response to my Oct. 18-19 sermon, “Life Songs,” has been phenomenal. Each person who shared their life songs with me has allowed me to see their beautiful spirits. Taken as a whole, these responses have given me a deep understanding of the people of UUCF, shaped with your resilience, your courage, your persistence. How could I feel anything other than love for you? This one week has changed me. I arrived with my standard level of professional responsibility. I arrived caring about your transition and planning to manage it well so you can have a successful search and an […]

Step up, step forward

by Rev. Jennifer Brooks. UUCF is a vibrant faith community that resonates with commitment and hope: Commitment to UU values. Hope for the future. And now is the time to step up so that UUCF can step forward. In June this congregation adopted a budget with a $48,000 deficit. Yes, a deficit. Uncertainty in the wake of a beloved minister’s departure, on the heels of a wonderful music director’s departure, put a crimp in the Annual Giving Campaign. Pledges didn’t quite match up with aspirations. Yet the adoption of a deficit budget was an act of faith – a vote of confidence in UUCF and its future. An overwhelming majority […]

Putting a face on immigration

by Alexandra Dixon. This summer we saw heartbreaking images of children crossing the border from Mexico into the US and heard stories of violence, poverty and despair. It is estimated that 70,000 children will cross the border this year. More generally, every year about a million people come to the US seeking a better life. I am proud to count myself among that number. My story started in Bogotá, Colombia, where, in 1982, I was born with a disability called spina bifida. My mom is Colombian and my dad was American. They met when mom was in graduate school at Columbia University in New York in the 1970s. They fell […]


by Rev.Jennifer Brooks. Last week UUCF’s Rev. Laura Horton-Ludwig officiated at the first same-sex marriage in Fairfax County. This past weekend, we celebrated the beauty of diversity – of “dappled things” – in services based on Gerard Manley Hopkins’ poem “Pied Beauty.” We celebrated the ethics and community of collaborative painting. At Saturday’s Neighborhood Dinner (to be continued on Nov. 1 with a new set of ZIP codes), UUCF members began adding their own experiences and memories to the History Timeline now in place in the Sanctuary. There is a convergence in these events. They resonate with the significance of diversity in our world, our faith community and our lives. […]

Marriage equality finally a reality in Virginia

by Rev. Laura Horton-Ludwig. “Whoo hoo!” Carol called out Monday morning. The rest of us in the office gathered round and heard the wonderful, shocking news: marriage equality in Virginia was here! We could hardly believe it, but there it was, all over Facebook, confirmed in email blasts and right there on the “Washington Post” website. After the hugs and happy tears, we asked ourselves: What do we do now? Thanks to the example of congregations and ministers in other states that have already welcomed marriage equality, we had something of a plan prepared: basically, get on down to the courthouse and be ready to marry people! And luckily, I […]

Call for climate change is getting louder

by Roger Helm. Climate change, climate Change, Climate Change, CLIMATE CHANGE! This evolving global holocaust has been weighing on me for several years now. As a Ph.D. ecologist I have looked deeply into the science portending this disaster and it scares the heck out of me, so much so I am getting “religion.” I define religion as having faith in the unverifiable belief that by continuing to do my best to make the world a better place I will somehow connect with an energy force that will also help improve those myriad important things beyond my control. When it comes to climate change, there is no challenge that is more […]