809 S. 4th St, 502-585-5110
[email protected] or [email protected]

Proudly Progressive, Boldly Inclusive, Radically Friendly

Upcoming Services and Archived Services – upper right corner of the home page

Upcoming Calendar Events

11 am

Sunday services
(Children attend until after the Moment for All Ages)
Children’s RE
SunJan 2911 amGuest Speaker (Rev.) Heather Thiessen – Cultivating our Center
SatFeb 18afternoonJim Calvert Memorial Service

  • We offer a hybrid approach to our Sunday Celebration of Life services, both in-person and via zoom. 
  • For the zoom link, go the “Live Stream Our Service” on the home page upper right corner.  The Meeting ID is 4508929882  You will not need a password. Contact [email protected] if you have trouble getting online. 
  • Covid Policy – masks are required for level red, but optional for levels yellow or green. Vaccines are highly recommended but not required.
  • Covid Level: Green The good news is that the metro community risk for covid has been at the Low Risk level (green) since September. Here at First U, masks and social distancing are not required, but remain a great option for those of us at increased risk. And if you aren’t aware, the updated booster vaccines, targeting the Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 spike protein variants, are now available.

Join us on Sunday, January 29 at 11 am

Cultivating Our Center

Speaker: Heather Thiessen

Can we postmoderns still “find our center?” Or is a stable, “essential” center more illusory than real? In the shadow of Holocaust Remembrance Day,
 Heather Thiessen suggests that we need to ask ourselves a different question: Will we commit to cultivating a compassionate center, open to critical reflection, but solid enough to function as character?
About Our Speaker
Guest preacher Heather Thiessen (M.Div., Ph.D.) is a Bible-reading, Presbyterian Church Sunday School teaching and choir singing, small fuel-efficient car driving, still pretty much second wave feminist and generally out lesbian Hoosier mom (no states are all one color), happily married to our own Devi P.
From time to time she teaches religious studies at Spalding. One of her early and continuing interests is the sociology of knowledge. At Spalding, she taught World Religions and Literature with an emphasis on the role of women.  Prior to her 12 years at Spalding, she served as the administrator of the Women’s Center at the Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary


Sections below in this order:

Social Justice

Religious Exploration

Our Community

Social Justice

CLCM: “Souper” Bowl Sunday
Super Bowl Sunday is February 12, and we all tend to enjoy great football, the great half-time show, and great snacks. But for many in our downtown neighborhood, snacks and meals are not reliably available. The food pantry at Central Louisville Community Ministries will be collecting canned soup, and all other non-perishable foods, through the month of January in observance of what we call “Souper Bowl Sunday.” Food donations are gratefully accepted at Calvary Episcopal Church, 821 S 4th St, on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 9:30-11:30am. Questions? Call CLCM at 502-587-1999.

Legislative Concern: Transgender
First U supports all people in decisions regarding their gender affirmation, 
There is an upcoming bill in the Kentucky House– HB 120, co-sponsored by Savannah Maddox, that addresses transkids medical care. It would institute some pretty heinous laws, affecting parents, doctors, insurance regulations, and governmental medical funding. It would:

  1. Criminalize parents seeking medical or surgical care for their children under 18 that addresses gender reassignment
  2. Criminalize physicians providing any medical or surgical treatment that addresses gender reassignment. (This could include psychological counseling)
  3. Bans insurance coverage for sexual reassignment care within the state
  4. Forbids the use of any governmental funding of any medical care affiliated with  gender affirmation or medical treatment

To voice your objection to this draconian measure, call 1-800-372-7181 and register your objection to this bill.

Immigrant Justice News
Check out the latest from the Interfaith Coalition for Immigrant Justice, including:

  • The annual HIAS Refugee Shabbat on Friday, February 3 at Temple Shalom Kentucky
  • La Casita updates, and actions and events at the U.S./Mexico border affecting those seeking asylum. 

Congratulations to the folks at La Casita Center for their new kitchen! La Casita was serving 80,000 meals a year using a standard kitchen stove. Impact100 Louisville awarded them $105,000 to upgrade their kitchen. The new kitchen will ensure proper handling and storage of food and improve the food safety standards and the quality of items available through La Casita‘s food pantry program.


KUUJAN All Network Gathering Thursday, January 26 from 7:30-9:00pm
KUUJAN Board member Eric Huffer working with Rus to facilitate this month’s gathering, which will focus on how we bring our UU values to our justice work. We will focus on small groups conversations and relationship building! To join the gathering, click here.

Reclaim your Vote
As you all know, the legislative session has begun. This year is a “short year” in the Kentucky Legislature and still, KUUJAN is working with a broad coalition of organizations to pass a constitutional amendment that would ensure that people who have felonies in their past automatically regain the right to vote once their sentence is completed. This coalition is currently working on the draft legislation, and solidifying support in Frankfort for this effort. The good news is that we seem to have signficent support from both the House and Senate leadership for some version of this legislation.  If passed, this amendment would appear on the ballot in 2024. If you are available to work with us on this effort, or know of people in your congregation or community would have time and energy to work with us on this please contact Rus directly.

Recruiting Board Members
One of our board members from 2022 has moved out of the area, and another has announced that he plans to step down this coming Spring. We also are hoping to expand our numbers.  If you are interested in learning more about serving on the Board of KUUJAN, please let Rus know. Your experience and expertise would be of benefit as we continue to look to develop as a network!

Religious Exploration

For the most up to date information – go to the Religious Exploration page on this website.

Nursery open from 9:30 – 12:30

Our Community

From the Care Team: Alex Graham
With a heavy heart, the Care Team writes to tell you that Alex Graham, a young man who was closely involved with our church during his teen and young adult years, took his life this week. Alex was 30 years old and was loved by those who knew him. Click here to read more. We grieve this loss of someone this young with all of you who knew Alex. Please hold Alex’s friends and family in your thoughts and in your hearts. 
If you or someone you know is in crisis, call or text the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline at 988 or online at 988lifeline.org. The Lifeline provides 24-hour, confidential support to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. Call 911 in life-threatening situations.

Save the Date: Jim Calvert
The memorial service for Jim Calvert will be at First Unitarian on Saturday, February 18. Details will be shared later. Click here to read his obituary.

Joys and Sorrows
If you signed up for the Joys and Sorrows list, you should have received the November-January emails by now. If not, please contact the office. If you want information about signing up, click here

Our Worship Team has filled the pulpit and our newly created Pastoral Care Team will be providing needed support under the mentorship and services of Reverend Elwood Sturtevant who retired in 2018 from All Peoples. (Please note: Reverend Elwood is not our Interim minister.) All other matters will be handled by our office. We expect an Interim minister to start by August. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact any one of the Board members
Donna Corbett, Board President

Pastoral Care Needs
For Pastoral Care, please reach out to your assigned Care Team member, the person who checks in with you throughout the year. They will put you in contact with the Pastoral Team member that can best meet your needs. The Volunteer Desk can provide you with your Care Team member’s contact information. If you don’t know who your Care Team person is or if you don’t have a Care Team person, the Volunteer Desk can also assist you. In an emergency or highly sensitive situations, congregation members may contact a member of the pastoral team directly. Suzanne MeeksBarb Kaminer or Elwood Sturtevant.

Stewardship and Canvassing
Each spring, First U and the Stewardship Team conduct an annual Pledge Drive. The Pledge Drive invites and encourages church members and friends to make a financial commitment (a pledge) to the church for the upcoming year. This financial support is how we pay our bills and grow our mission both within our walls and in our wider community.  Every member and friend is personally contacted by a good-hearted volunteer (a “canvasser”) to make the ask, answer questions, and maybe begin a new friendship.  Honestly, no one feels entirely comfortable about agreeing to be a canvasser.  We understand that most people feel a reluctance to talk, and ask, for money. Rest assured that your canvasser this year will have received training, will not strong-arm you into making a pledge, and will treat your conversations with confidentiality. When you are contacted by your canvasser this spring, please thank them for embracing this important work of the church.

A Note to Retirees
Are you a retiree looking to donate to First Unitarian tax free?   You can use your IRA retirement account to make that donation by way of a Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD).  Every dollar of QCD that goes directly to a non-profit, such as First Unitarian, will satisfy your RMD requirement and not be treated as income for your federal taxes! You can reduce your taxable income while doing good for the world.  You can pay your pledge, donate to the capital fund or the endowment with your disbursement. Reach out to the treasurer for more information! 

CUUPs on the first and third Wednesday of each month.
The Covenant of UU Pagans (CUUPS) group resumed in-person classes on September 7th. We meet in the church library on the first and third Wednesday of each month and begin class at 7pm. All of CUUPS classes and public rituals are open to all our church family. If you have an interest in learning more about Earth-Centered spirituality, please join us.

Book Club on the second Monday of each month

We meet in the parlor at 5 pm the second Monday of each month. Even if you haven’t had a chance to read the selection for the month, this is an opportunity for deep conversation with fellow Unitarians. Contact Rita Sasse for the title of the month, or watch the slides before the beginning of each service live or on Zoom.

~ Land Acknowledgment ~

First U acknowledges that Shawnee, Cherokee, Chickasaw and Osage native peoples lived on the land we now call Kentucky prior to their forced removal. We honor both our past and ongoing connection to them.

Find out more here.

To Reach Us

Office Hours

11am-3pm Monday-Thursday
The best way to reach us at any time is by email.

  • Barbara, the office administrator [email protected]
  • Volunteer desk [email protected]
  • Phone (502) 585-5110. If you don’t reach someone, leave a message, including your email address, as messages are automatically emailed to the office.
For More Information
Contact the Minister; [email protected]
Contact the Building Superintendent; [email protected]
RE Coordinator: [email protected] or see the RE page on this website
Justice Ministry; [email protected]
See the First U News or Events web page.
Members and friends may contact the Care Team ([email protected]) for personal assistance.
Building Use Policy click here

Follow Us on Social Media Click here to go to our Facebook page. “Like Us” so you receive updates.

Donations by Phone
If you use a phone app to give, please load the Vanco Mobile app to replace GivePlus.