Speaker: Mary Bennett

Mary joined UCV in 1991 and has been an active member ever since. She was the Executive Director of the Canadian Unitarian Council from 2000-2008. You’ll find her gardening the labyrinth, at circle dance events as well as most Sunday mornings. She co-edits the UCV Events publication and helps with the website. Her visual art can be seen at marybennett.net

Mary usually offers at least one worship service each year, sometimes including the annual Fire Communion in late December.

She loves helping new members get connected with the community. As well as the Unitarian church, she’s an active volunteer in her Kitsilano neighbourhood and at arts and culture events in Vancouver including the Fringe Festival, DOXA Documentary Film Festival and the Firehall Arts Centre Theatre.

A friend once commented that Mary was more likely to attend events where food was involved. With Patti she coordinates Hygge potluck dinners.

All About Connection

Mary was once introduced to a Unitarian congregation with simply, “Mary’s all about connection.”

Whether holding hands in circle dance, introducing new members, setting up Zoom meetings or liking, commenting, and sharing on Facebook, Mary is indeed “all about connection.”

She’ll share some of the reasons for her passion from personal experience, gratitude from others, and even a theological stance of “creative interchange.”

She will likely try to persuade you to connect and engage more broadly and deeply. Be warned.

Mary has been a member of UCV for 30 years. She was the executive director of the Canadian Unitarian Council for 8 years. She is focusing her UCV volunteer time currently on working with Kiersten on intergenerational programs like Mystery Pals and Coming of Age.

Order of Service

Fire Communion

In between the closing of the old year and the unfurling of the new, we come together in a ritual of reflection, letting go, and looking forward.

Fire Communion is an opportunity to cast the emotional baggage of the old year into the flames and, lighter in spirit, set our intentions for the year to come.

This year, Mary Bennett will offer some reflections on the element of fire in our lives.

Patrick Dubois will treat us to music.

Wendy Bryan will lead the ritual of burning rosemary sprigs in our cauldron of transformation.

This is the 8th day of Hanukkah and we will light a menorrah – Sheila Resels.

People silently toss their sprig into the flames.Following the service there will be a sharing circle (“covenant group”) in Hewett Hall where you will be invited to share your comments if you so wish.

Dancing the Living Tradition

Have you noticed the invitations to sacred circle dancing and wondered what it’s all about? Mairy and Mary will share how circle dance became an important part of their spiritual journeys.

A group of Unitarians will demonstrate some of the dances to songs from Singing the Living Tradition. During the service, you’ll be invited to sing or tap your toes or dance in the aisles.

Our mantra in circle dance is: There are no wrong steps, only variations. All variations are welcome – even two left feet.

Click below to see the text of our two talks and additional information.

Dancing the Living Tradition Reflections

Pianist: Eric Wyness

Soloist: Nicola Hamilton