What to Expect at AUUF
We are delighted that you are interested in the Anchorage UU Fellowship. We hope these questions and answers are helpful.
Who is welcome to participate at AUUF?
Everyone is welcome to attend our services and learn more about our Fellowship. Interested in more? Learn about AUUF Membership
What is meant by a Welcoming Congregation?
The Anchorage Unitarian Universalist Fellowship is designated as a Welcoming Congregation. This pertains to the national Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Welcoming Congregation Program launched in the 1980s and 1990s to help UU churches be inclusive places, especially with regard to gender and sexuality. Annually, Welcoming Congregations renew their commitment to ensure lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people feel welcome as full members of our faith communities.
AUUF strives to be a welcoming place where all can feel safe and valued. Feeling welcome is also a function of feeling safe. See our Safer Congregation policies on our ABOUT page for policies designed to enhance the safety of our members, friends and guests, and particularly our children and youth.
What is a typical Sunday service like?
While AUUF has some special Sunday services, most typical 11:00 a.m. worship services include a welcome and chalice lighting by a worship associate (lay leader), followed by an opening hymn, a reading related to UU principles or traditions, a sermon or message by our minister or guest speaker, a moment of meditation, joys and concerns (lighting candles or dropping pebbles), the offering, a closing hymn, closing words and sending the flame song.
The 9:00 a.m. service is a forum that includes a presentation on a topic of interest to the fellowship, followed by questions and answers by those in attendance.
Find more detail on the Sunday Services page.
What is the Dress Code?
You are welcome to come as you are. At a typical Sunday service, you will see some people wearing their "Sunday best" and others who will dress more casually. Jeans, tennis shoes, biking shorts and other athletic gear (many commute by bike or on foot) are not uncommon. Wear what you feel most comfortable wearing.
What if I have children?
Childcare is available at the 9:00 service for ages 1 - 11. Age grouped classes are offered during the 11:00 service. A toddler class is available for children who are 1 - 2 year of age. For children who are 3 and older, we provide religious exploration classes based on curricula from the Unitarian Universalist Association (embellished with things and thoughts unique to Alaska). Learn more about our children / youth Religious Exploration programs.
Visitors to the Religious Exploration (RE) classes are asked to complete a brief RE Guest Information form as a means to communicate with you about our RE programs, as well as a measure of safety for our young people. Completed forms provide accurate information on each child for whom we are responsible during RE class times. RE Guest Information Form
What if my child doesn't separate well?
If your child is not comfortable leaving you, they may join you during the services in the Sanctuary. Or, parents / guardians are welcome to stay with the child in the Religious Exploration classroom until the child feels comfortable.
Am I expected to give at the service?
Contributions collected during services benefit many non-profit charitable organizations that provide vital assistance to vulnerable and underserved groups. AUUF supports such organizations by donating a "half-portion" of the service plate collection, while the other half helps to underwrite AUUF programs. People attending services decide what, if anything, they wish to contribute. Many fellowship members and friends make their plate offering annual pledge contributions through monthly payments via credit card and check, and so they may not donate to the offering plate each week. Congregants who make pledge payments through the offering plate are asked to indicate this on their check memo line or sealed envelope.