Unitarian Church celebrates winter solstice service

The Unitarian Church in Westport, 10 Lyons Plains Road, presents a winter solstice service on Saturday, Dec. 20, at 7 p.m. The service of reflection and celebration will be led by the Rev. Marti Bishop who will discuss the meaning of this longest night of the year for our ancestors thousands of years ago. Childcare will be provided.

The Winter Solstice is the longest night and the shortest day. From now on (until the Summer Solstice, at any rate), the nights grow shorter and the days grow longer, the dark wanes and the sun waxes in power.

Many of the customs associated with the Winter Solstice (and therefore with other midwinter festivals such as Saturnalia, Hanukkah, New Year’s and of course, Christmas) derive from stories of a battle between the dark and the light, which is won, naturally, by the light. Other traditions record this as the time a savior (the Sun-Child) is born to a virgin mother.

Unitarian Universalism is a “living tradition” that draws upon the wisdom of the world’s religions. The Westport Congregation is a diverse community of individuals and families, old and young, and gay and straight, from a variety of faith backgrounds.

Rev. Bishop completed the ordination program at the New Seminary for Interfaith Studies and concluded a seven year career as a hospice minister in March of this year. Rev. Marti is especially interested in designing rituals and educating people on the ancient religions of indigenous people.

Information: 203-227-7205 or uuwestport.org.