Author: Rev. Joanna

Looking ahead to next “church year”

In terms of how we lay out our worship and religious education calendars, our programming parallels an academic calendar, running from September through May, with special summer services and programs. This is the time of year when we begin making our plans for the “new … read more.

The Power of Sacrificial Love

When you see the phrase “sacrificial love,” what does it stir up for you?

It is tempting to never use it, simply because it has been used in some very damaging ways. There’s the whole religious idea that God was so mad at humans that his … read more.

The Big Tent of Live Oak


These two pictures say so much about Live Oak.

And I think they offer a vision for Unitarian Universalism as a whole.

On April 19, we held a Good Friday Tenebrae service at Live Oak with a communion ritual, lifting up the story of the last days … read more.

Being a Community Partner with BAGA

On April 20th, along with Live Oak Board member Mark Anderson and Administrator Diane Stepakof-Fay, I attended the Bangladesh Association of Greater Austin (BAGA) Pohela Boishakh (Bengali New Year) festival at Fiesta Gardens. There, Live Oak was presented with their 2019 Community Partnership Award “for … read more.

Holy, Wild Week

This week has been a bit of a wild week, hasn’t it? Games of Thrones returned, which meant that your social media was filled with posts about watching it, posts about not watching it, and dire wolf warnings about DO NOT POST ANY SPOILERS. Speaking … read more.

What is a UU Baby/Child Dedication?

Child Dedication

Live Oak Unitarian Universalist Church

Most religions have some type of ceremony to mark the arrival of a baby or child and express the commitment a community gives to the child and their parents – baptism, Bris, etc.

For … read more.

Free Universal Theological Translator with Membership

New to Live Oak? There are some metaphors you’ll hear us use occasionally, which serve as shorthand for a larger (hopefully helpful) concept.

One you’ll hear about is the “Universal Theological Translator.” This metaphor comes not from religion, but from the tv show Star Trek. (Which … read more.

The Power of Calm

Sometimes, the most radical act of solidarity we can do is to remain calm. Non-anxious. Still. (Boring, even.)

Unitarian Universalist theologian James Luther Adams wrote, “The decisive element in social action is the exercise of power, and the character of social action is determined by the … read more.