For the eighth year, St. Raphael Church in Bay Village will conduct a series called Catholics Coming Home on seven Wednesday evenings from Jan. 30 to March 13 from 7-8:30 p.m. These sessions are for non-practicing Catholics who might be interested in returning to the Church. There will be informal sharing and an update of the Catholic faith in support-group format.
Faith & Spirituality
Last November, Bay Presbyterian Church hosted its first two-day Marriage Retreat, entitled “Renew, Refresh, Revive.” Sixty-five married couples of all ages attended. Pastors Garnett Slatton, Tom Madden and Matt Guertin, along with the lay marriage team, offered messages, personal stories and music. Topics were based on the book, “The Meaning of Marriage,” by Timothy and Kathy Keller. Interestingly, though it’s likely that wives may have been the primary instigators to get some of the husbands to attend, all of the favorable comments at the end came from the husbands.
What a unique opportunity! "Powers of the Universe" is a new program at Unity Spiritual Center brought to you by a truly amazing facilitator, Maureen Haggerty, who shares her lifelong passion for our evolving Universe Story and the exploration of our evolving consciousness in which she is adept at making deep connections between the scientific, the philosophical and the spiritual!
This 12-week spiritual journey is based on cosmologist Brian Swimme's DVD series and the spirituality of Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. You can now participate in this program which includes a unique combination of lecture, DVD viewing, group discussion, artistic expression, meditation and energy embodiment with energy exercises with Patrick Davis. Beginning Jan. 24, 6-9 p.m., at Unity Spiritual Center, this program explores the 10 cosmological dynamics that have shaped our universe since the Big Bang.
Christmas means many things to many people. Make Christmas this year personal and meaningful with all Unity Spiritual Center has to offer.
The snow will be flying soon, and when it does, it really means that the holidays are here as well. Unity Spiritual Center begins the Christmas season with an inspirational program based on the book by Jean Houston, "Godseed: The Journey of Christ."This is a spiritual journey of the Nativity to be held on four Tuesdays from Nov. 27 through Dec. 18 from 7 to 9 p.m.
Many West Shore residents have come to know and love Unity Spiritual Center through many different avenues. It might be through yoga, meditation, reiki, and fantastic speakers on many different topics. It might be through the Spiritual Cinema which will have its last movie for 2012 on Friday, Nov. 16, from 7-9 p.m. This month it is "Painting the Future" which reveals how the thoughts we choose create the life we live. The film is based on the teachings of Louise Hay and explores the power of positive thinking in healing past struggles and learning to live joyfully and heart-centered. This movie is truly inter-generational with a nine-year-old young lady stealing your heart away.
The holidays are approaching! The relatives are coming! The holiday season is a typically stressful time of the year, but make 2012 different! Prepare to be grateful this year rather than preparing for the annual stressful times!
Mark Friday, Nov. 9, 7 p.m., on your calendars to attend a Gratitude Workshop at Unity Spiritual Center in Westlake.
Why should you attend? Well, let's look at some questions you can ask yourself to answer that: Do you concentrate on what's missing in your life? Do you neglect to acknowledge your loved ones? Do you push yourself without embracing your journey?
Unity Spiritual Center in Westlake will host Reverend Linda Martella for a weekend of workshops Saturday, Oct. 27, and Sunday, Oct. 28. Rev. Linda considers herself called to be an instrument of spiritual clarity, and she will demonstrate that in both of her workshops at Unity. The opportunity to hear her speak is truly worth your time on both days, and you will come away with a new understanding of prayer.
Pope Benedict XVI announced in his apostolic letter "Porta Fidei" ("Door of Faith") that there would be a “Year of Faith” for the universal Church to begin Oct. 11, 2012 and lasting through Nov. 24, 2013. During this year, the faithful are called to “a renewed conversion to the Lord, the one Savior of the world.” In other words, the Year of Faith is an opportunity for people to experience a conversion – to turn back to Jesus, rediscover and renew their relationship with Christ and his Church.
This Year of Faith marks three momentous occasions: the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council, the 20th anniversary of the release of the "Catechism of the Catholic Church" and the World Synod of Bishops for the New Evangelization taking place in Rome this October.
"The mind can go in a thousand directions. But on this beautiful path, I walk in peace. With each step, a gentle wind blows. With each step, a flower blooms." – Thich Nhat Hanh, Vietnamese Buddhist monk
In the month of October, Unity Spiritual Center is offering those who are seeking ways to pray a variety of programs that will open new doors to prayer. For example, on Saturday, Oct. 6, from 10 a.m. to noon, you can give yourself the gift of a Saturday morning and join in the ancient practice of labyrinth walking. You will learn from a short lecture what's behind the growing attraction of the mysterious labyrinth and why it is being revived in popular culture. It is a powerful tool for transformation whether you are seeking healing, exploring the next steps on your personal life path, exploring your own soul work or you just want to learn what the labyrinth is all about.
Where did we come from? Why are we here? What do the "wise ones" know?
These are questions that many of you may have asked over your lifetimes. On Friday, Sept. 28, Unity Spiritual Center, in a special Spiritual Cinema offering in combination with the annual Fall Program, presents a bold synthesis of information, uniting ancient prophecy and indigenous wisdom with cutting-edge science with the showing of "In Search of the Future," a feature-length documentary in the nature-of-the-universe genre pioneered by "What the Bleep Do We Know?" and "The Secret."
During the summer, 36 youth with seven chaperones under the guidance of teacher Laurie Lenz from St. Paul Lutheran Church in Westlake were able to participate in a life-changing YouthWorks Christian Mission Trip to the community of Warrensburg, N.Y., in the Adirondack Mountains.
The youth assisted with painting homes, helping on farms, making a mosaic in a neighboring town, creating a garden in rocky soil, setting up a rummage sale, trimming greenery, cutting down trees, helping people and sharing the love of Jesus. Having morning quiet time for devotions and Bible servant-based discussions in the evenings really made a difference as each person shared the miracles of that day.
Catholics who want to reconnect with their faith are invited to the Awakening Faith program at St. Lad's Parish in Westlake. This six-session series includes topics such as "Spirituality: What's the Buzz?", "Can I Accept God's Mercy?", "Can the Mass Make My Life Meaningful?" and "The Church and Me." You can learn and ask questions, all in a friendly and confidential setting with other Catholics.
The sessions are on Mondays from 7 to 8:30 p.m. beginning on Sept. 17 at St. Ladislas Parish, 2345 Bassett Rd. For more information go to www.stlads.org or call 440-835-2300 and ask for Deacon John.
As we listen to the Universe, we are lifted to new heights of awareness and understanding. You can unite with people all over the world responding to the call of the Universe to let go and let God!
On Sept. 13, Unity Spiritual Center will join Silent Unity – an international, interdenominational, 24/7 prayer ministry – and spiritual communities worldwide for the 19th annual Unity World Day of Prayer.
Unity World Day of Prayer unites people of all faiths in prayer for the well being of one another and our world. This year's theme is "The Universe is Calling," which is drawn from the classic book by the late Reverend Eric Butterworth.
Fall is here! School is starting! Do you wish for the days when you looked forward to meeting new friends and learning new things? At Unity Spiritual Center, you still can!
As a part of the annual Fall Program at Unity, the 2012 Book Study Groups are beginning their signup the week of Aug. 19. There are over 15 different groups in various Greater Cleveland locations, as well as Unity Spiritual Center at 23855 Detroit Rd. in Westlake, accepting members for the seven weekly gatherings. Their book this year is "How to Pray Without Talking to God."
How can you pray without talking to God? Come to Unity's Fall Program and learn how.
Beginning Sept. 13, 2012, we can listen to the Universe and become lifted to new heights of awareness and understanding with the observance of the World Day of Prayer. At Unity Spiritual Center in Westlake, the World Day of Prayer begins the Fall Program small-group book discussions.
There are many movies about food today, and most of them talk about bad, bad things! Are you ready for a beautiful, positive story about food?
When the premiere of "For the Love of Food" was held May 1 at the Environmental Studies Center of Oberlin College, there were moments when the photography was so beautiful that it could have been a film for meditation! Northeastern Ohio – including towns like Kent and Garrettsville, Oberlin and Vermilion, and many more – is a mecca of local food, and the countryside where so many farms are is so beautiful. "For the Love of Food" gives you a respite from the typical movies about food while showing how beautiful our part of the country is!
Popcorn anyone? Following the successful opening of the Unity Spiritual Cinema Series with the June 15 showing of "The Keeper of the Keys" featuring local author Lisa Ryan, July 20 and August 17 are dates to be marked on everyone's calendar for the next two very different movies. The Spiritual Cinema Series prides itself on having a wide variety of movies that are just plain wonderful!
Friday, July 20, at 7 p.m., the movie (with popcorn!) entitled "Biology of Belief 'Lite'" will be shown. We all somehow "know" that the mind/body connection is key to real health. Are you tired of trying to find the words that describe how the mind and body are related, and why their relationship is important to proper health? A renaissance in cellular biology has led to a new understanding of the mechanisms of the mind/body connection. Research scientist Bruce Lipton, Ph.D.,introduces a long-awaited paradigm shift in the biomedical sciences. The movie will inspire your spirit, engage your mind and challenge your creativity as you comprehend the enormous real potential for applying this information to your life.
The Christ Church Westshore congregation will begin holding Sunday services at Bay Middle School on Sunday, June 17, due to summer construction at Bay High School where the congregation has been worshipping since November 2011. The Anglican congregation – made up of more than 250 individuals and together for more than 50 years – held services in the St. Barnabas church building at Bradley and Wolf roads prior to moving to Bay High School last fall.
“Bay City Schools are wonderful hosts to Christ Church,” said Rector Gene Sherman. “When they alerted us about their summer renovation plans, they gave us a choice to stay in the high school during construction with no air conditioning and, likely, with construction obstacles in and around the facility. We chose air conditioning, frankly! Bay Middle School offers air conditioning, beautiful windows and a lot more flexibility in set-up options than the stationary seating in the high school auditorium.”
Your pets give so much to you, Unity Spiritual Center wants to honor the pets you love! Bring your pets to Unity on Saturday, June 30, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. for group and individual blessings.
Many healing modalities such as reiki, massage and acupressure will be offered. Cash or check donations to benefit animal groups are requested for the healing services. This is a wonderful opportunity for a time outdoors with your beloved pets.
Making a commitment to live by the laws of the universe in every part of your life to the abundance that is here for every one of us. This is larger living!
Reverend Barbara Smith will facilitate this 10-week experiment in larger living. You have incredible potential within you; it's waiting to emerge! Attend the introductory class at no charge to find out all of the details and decide if you are willing to be a part of the experiment. The introductory class will be Sunday, June 17, at 12:30 p.m. at Unity Spiritual Center, 23855 Detroit Rd. in Westlake.
Everyone experiences shifting emotions and feelings throughout the course of a day, but many of us simply try to ignore them and get on with being productive. However, if we can be a "student of our own experience," we can increase our awareness and understanding of our feelings and emotions, and ultimately move our lives in the direction we choose, rather than being at their mercy.
The practice of being a "student of experience" will be presented at Unity Spiritual Center, June 9 from 7:00-9:00 p.m. and is free to the public. Due to limited seating, registration at www.unityspiritualcenter.com is requested. Author and creator of the Student of Experience practice, Jim McDonald, will guide participants in exploring the idea that we are responsible for our suffering, and that believing someone or something outside of us is responsible is a learned pattern that prevents us from ever being truly free.
Unity Spiritual Center's Spiritual Cinema will show "The Keeper of the Keys," which features Cleveland native and nationally recognized gratitude expert Lisa Ryan. The movie will be shown with an intro by Lisa, at 7 p.m. on June 15, and it will be followed by a discussion group led by Lisa.
"The Keeper of the Keys" is the first funny personal-development movie; it is a hybrid that combines a self-help documentary with a humorous fictional story line. The film's goal is to empower viewers by "taking the Hell" out of self-help.
Nationally recognized speaker, trainer, and writer Reverend Ric Schumacher will travel through the pages of Myrtle Fillmore's most powerful writings in his own unique way. Myrtle Fillmore, an Ohio native, was a co-founder of Unity.
In this lecture-style workshop on Sunday, May 27, 1-3 p.m., at Unity Spiritual Center, 23855 Detroit Rd., Westlake, Rev. Schumacher uses powerful graphics to illuminate deep spiritual principles making them easy to understand and apply to your personal situation.
Meditation, meditation, meditation!We are hearing a lot about meditation these days – from medical practitioners, from television programs, from our religious leaders. It sounds like we all should know how to meditate, but many people have never meditated, don't know to meditate and cannot even begin to think about how to start.
Meditation Made Easy may be the answer for those who want to meditate but need some help in getting started. On Tuesday, May 29, from 7-8:30 p.m., Unity Spiritual Center Reverend Fred Wright, himself a Unity minister, brings simplicity and a sense of humor to meditation that makes it easy to understand and practice.
"Revealed" is an exploration of self – a glimpse into the spiritual expressions and personal beliefs of 11 individuals who have been given the unique challenge of symbolically capturing their essence and spirituality in a small box. The 42-minute film created by photographer Scott Indermaur, a native of Lakewood, Ohio, has been accepted into five film festivals and has received several raving critic reviews.
We're ready for a vacation Bible school your children will never forget!
At SonRise National Park, your kids will get to experience Jesus in a camp-like setting. We’re setting up tents and gearing up for a fun week of outdoor play. We’ll have fun with music, crafts, games and really active playtime as kids learn that Jesus is always there for them.
St. Bernadette Parish in Westlake is pleased to host the Vatican International Exhibit of Eucharistic Miracles of the World. This photographic exhibit has been brought to America by the Real Presence Association of Chicago, Ill.
The exhibit will showcase the various miracles that have occurred over the centuries in many countries. These miracles have been approved since the eighth century by the Vatican. The Eucharistic Miracles Exhibit has pictures that are printed on posters and displayed on wooden stands. There will be 152 posters along with maps showing the locations of the miracles with historical explanation.
Unity Spiritual Center will offer the group meditation program, Living in Oneness: 2012, at a time when the energies of transformation are increasing daily. This is the fifth Living in Oneness gathering, and the first to be offered in Westlake at Unity Spiritual Center.
The evening will begin at 7:00 p.m., Monday, April 23, at Unity Spiritual Center, 23855 Detroit Rd. A $5.00 minimum love offering will be accepted. Everyone is encouraged to register online at www.TheSilentMind.com. Walk-ins are welcome, but it is helpful to register online so that you are sure to have a space and that guidelines for the evening can be sent to you. Please wear socks and bring a blanket to lie on.
Religion scholar Dr. David Aune will visit Westlake United Methodist Church on Saturday, April 28, for an evening of conversation about reconciling real-world thoughts on salvation with the teachings of Scripture.
"There are a number of Biblical passages which claim that salvation is only possible through the name of Jesus,” Dr. Aune states, “and yet many Christians understand God's grace to expand beyond the boundaries of our particular religious tradition. How can we affirm the possibility of God's expansive love while remaining faithful to the clear teaching of Scripture on this issue?”
This free event begins with a potluck dinner at 5:30 p.m., followed by the program from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Please bring a side dish, salad, or dessert to share! Registration is required by calling the church at 440-871-3088 or online at westlakeumc.org. Go to "More Articles" and click on Dr. David Aune Event. Free professional childcare is offered for kids up to age 11. You must register for childcare.
Master Stephen Co, who has been covered by CBS News and endorsed by health experts Deepak Chopra and Carolyn Myss, will present a workshop on healing at Unity Spiritual Center, Tuesday, April 17, at 7 p.m. Admission is $10. Master Co is very well known in the western U.S. and is now bringing his techniques to the Midwest. Unity is very pleased to be one of the first in this region to welcome him.
Unity is located at 23855 Detroit Rd. in Westlake. To register in advance for the event and for details, visit www.unityspiritualcenter.com. You can also view the CBS news coverage of Master Co on the site. Although tickets will be available at the door, pre-registration is suggested to ensure seating is available.
We are once again entering Holy Week. This is a ritual we reenact every year in spring. It is no coincidence this holy time is in spring. It is truly a resurrection for our planet as it comes out of the womb of winter.
Of course, if we live in the southern hemisphere, that analogy goes out the window, So it must be something deeper; something that touches the very core of our being. Jesus was an iconoclast. He went against all the codes of conduct of the time.
He challenged the Pharisees for their pride in following the letter of the law. Imagine their confusion when they thought they were doing the “right” things and then were criticized by a country rabbi who could perform miracles. That didn’t go over well.
Unity Spiritual Center offers a two-part program for Lenten preparation based on the theme of releasing your inner splendor by affirming divine wholeness and erasing thoughts and patterns that no longer serve us. On Tuesday evenings from Feb. 21 through April 10, Unity will offer a guided meditation from 7:00 to 7:30 p.m.
Following the meditation, a book study will be held from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m based on Unity co-founder Charles Fillmore's book "Keep A True Lent." It contains thought-provoking essays and affirmations on self reflection and prayer that guide the reader toward a spiritual awakening. You may attend either of the events or both.
Moms of preschoolers and younger children looking for a faith-filled group of women to share the parenting journey are invited to join us for inspiration, laughter and some creative time while your little ones are safely cared for in an age-appropriate setting. We will meet every other Tuesday, beginning Jan. 24, from 9:30-11 a.m. at Westlake United Methodist Church.
The group is reading "A Mom after God's Own Heart" by Elizabeth George. Free professional childcare is offered for infants up to age 3 and story time with our librarians Miss Judy & Miss Nanci for the older children. Infants are welcome to stay with their moms for the book group.
Returning by popular demand, Twin Engine retakes the Unity Spiritual Center stage for their annual “The Night in Bethlehem” performance. If you witnessed the performance last year, no doubt you'll want to see it again. This year's performance will be held Sunday, Dec. 18, at 7 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults; $10 for children; and $10 each for four or more tickets.
“The Night in Bethlehem,” a delightful tale for the young and young at heart, takes place after the birth of Jesus, as a young boy named Samuel anxiously awaits his time to talk with Joseph. He’s waited all day for Joseph to explain how this came to be, from the Angels to the Kings and how they all arrived in Bethlehem. But Samuel, a seven-year-old boy, is also excited to play his drum for the new baby Jesus.
“In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. Then the angel of the Lord stood before them...” When we hear these familiar words from the Christmas narrative, the sentimental lens through which we read gives us the image of gentle and devout men prepared for a visitation from God. In contrast, first-century Rabbinic texts describe shepherds as a rough, thieving bunch who stole from their employers and surrounding land owners.
Which view is correct? Were the shepherds gentle, devout herders, or disreputable thieves? They were probably neither, instead ordinary people doing a job that was necessary for their communities, but nonetheless held in contempt by many of those who benefitted from their labor. What we know from the narrative is that they were so highly valued by God that He sent Jesus for their salvation.
"What has come into being with him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it." –John 1:3b-5 (NRSV)
Candlelight has an especially dear place in our worship at Christmas. The glow casts a warmth in the now, a longing and hope for what is to come. When we light a candle prior to a meal or a prayer, it is said that we invite and instill a sense of the sacred in each of us gathered there.
Darkness comes in many forms. It can be physical or emotional; even spiritual. Upon what manner of darkness would we hope for our candle, our prayer, to cast light? Do we pray for peace? Joy? An experience of the holy? What needs and opportunities in the world around us would our candles expose and illuminate?
I have found that we are either going toward peace or going away from peace. It is sometimes difficult to consistently go toward peace. So, I started looking at the things that take me away from peace and there are many. What is robbing you of your peace this holiday season? Let’s take a look at the traditional Christmas story to find some clues.
The main antagonist in the story is Herod. The literal meaning of Herod is that he is a historical person who was king sometime around the time Jesus was born. On the moral/ psychological level, any king is a symbol for the ego. The ego is our personalized sense of our own identity. Because Herod had a long reign, he symbolizes a firmly established ego. A well-established sense of identity, for us as individuals, is necessary for our higher self to come into expression.
Begin your holiday season with a gloriously festive evening on Saturday, Dec. 3, by attending “Deck the Hall,” Unity’s fourth annual Christmas Concert. The evening will be filled with music as more than twenty musicians perform holiday favorites.
Coordinated by music director Bonnie Chase, the program promises something for everyone. Soloists, vocal ensembles, instrumentalists and the unparalleled “Choir on Fire” will perform in a variety of musical styles to help you get in the spirit of the season.
The festivities begin at 7 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 3, at Unity Spiritual Center, 23855 Detroit Rd. in Westlake. Pizza and refreshments will be on sale before the concert, as well as during the intermission. Tickets are $15 each (children under 14 free) and can be purchased online at unityspiritualcenter.com, by phone at 440-835-0400 or at the door.
Beginning Sunday, Nov. 20, the congregation of Bay Village’s St. Barnabas Anglican Church will hold its 10:00 a.m. Sunday services in the auditorium at Bay High School until a permanent facility is built or purchased. In addition, the Anglican congregation – made up of more than 250 individuals – plans to change its name to Christ Church Westshore.
The congregation is moving because its former building at Bradley and Wolf Roads – where many parishioners have worshiped for decades – was awarded to the Episcopal Diocese after a lengthy property dispute.
“All will be welcome at Christ Church Westshore,” said Reverend Gene Sherman. “We are a community of believers who seek to know God, love one another, and serve the community around us.”
Everyone knows meditation is good for you. In fact, everyone from Buddha to Dr. Oz recommends it for better physical, mental and spiritual health!
This is the most common thought concerning meditation: “I can’t meditate because my mind won’t be still.” Perhaps the truth is that your mind won’t be still because you won’t meditate. However, like nightly flossing or keeping your personal papers organized, meditation is something many people feel they should do, and know would be helpful, but day by day manage to postpone it. Often, just sitting down to try it seems to stir up the active mind even more!