Our congregation is what we make of it. The same can be said of the invitation we face each day to live a life of integrity; it is, as always, what we make of it. In the year ahead, from many different angles, we will take up that invitation by asking ourselves: "What Does It Mean to Live a Life of...?"

Starting in 2013, we began to focus that question on a particular theme with each month. This approach, called Theme-Based Ministry, is an invitation to go deeper. With weekly services, a shared collection of readings and resources, and monthly small reflection circles called Journey Groups, we live for several weeks with a series of questions on each topic. This approach to ministry is a challenge to walk our talk — to take up, with growing intention, the question "How shall we live?" Exciting possibilities might unfold from our deepening in this way together.

Throughout the year, our congregation explores a different theme each month through Sunday worship, children’s religious education, adult programs, and the feast of materials found in our publication New Horizons. One of the most meaningful ways to engage with the monthly topics is by being part of a Journey Group.

Journey Groups provide a structured way to connect with others, while delving deeper into your own spiritual journey. The groups involve the shared spiritual practice of deep and respectful listening, which carves out the all-too-rare space in our busy lives to slow down and “hear ourselves think.” These small gatherings of 5-10 people come together for two hours once a month to reflect on a variety of questions related to the theme.

Each month, our newsletter, New Horizons will explain and discuss the theme. If you are thinking of joining, please read the Guide for Deep Listening and the Guide for Small Group Participants.

Themes for 2016/2017: What does it mean to be a people of ...?

    Month Theme Learn More
  May Compassion  
  April Resistance  
  March Simplicity New Horizons - Volume 5, Issue 7
  February Love and Justice New Horizons - Volume 5, Issue 6
  January Creaton New Horizons - Volume 5, Issue 5
  December Expectation New Horizons - Volume 5, Issue 4
  November Letting Go New Horizons - Volume 5, Issue 3
  October Blessing New Horizons - Volume 5, Issue 2
  September Invitation New Horizons - Volume 5, Issue 1

Themes for 2015/2016: What does it mean to be a people of ...?

    Month Theme Learn More
  June Revelry New Horizons - Volume 3, Issue 10
  May Tradition New Horizons - Volume 3, Issue 9
  April Revelation New Horizons - Volume 3, Issue 8
  March Renewal New Horizons - Volume 3, Issue 7
  February Reconciliation New Horizons - Volume 3, Issue 6
  January Resilience New Horizons - Volume 3, Issue 5
  December Wonder New Horizons - Volume 3, Issue 4
  November Integrity New Horizons - Volume 3, Issue 3
  October Grace New Horizons - Volume 3, Issue 2
  September Promise New Horizons - Volume 3, Issue 1

 

Themes for 2014/2015: What does it mean to live a life of ...?

    Month Theme Learn More
  June Imagination New Horizons - Volume 2, Issue 10
  May Story/Stories New Horizons - Volume 2, Issue 9
  April Sustainability New Horizons - Volume 2, Issue 8
  March Freedom New Horizons - Volume 2, Issue 7
  February Evolution New Horizons - Volume 2, Issue 6
  January Character New Horizons - Volume 2, Issue 5
  December Embodiment New Horizons - Volume 2, Issue 4
  November Vulnerability New Horizons - Volume 2, Issue 3
  October Awakening New Horizons - Volume 2, Issue 2
  September Kinship New Horizons - Volume 2, Issue 1other reading

Books Exploring those Themes

The catalogue for the congregation's library is online and searchable. Most of these books can be checked out to members, friends and visitors. Some books are also available in the Toronto Public Library (TPL).

Each month two books related to that month's theme will be reviewed at our Issues and Ideas book talks. If you would like to be a reviewer, please contact Gerta Moray by This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Author Title Availability
September: Kinship
Eve LaPlante Marmee and Louisa

Themes for 2013/2014: What does in mean to live a life of ...?

    Month Theme     Month  Theme  
    September Listening New Horizons, other reading   February Passion New Horizons, other reading
  October Purpose New Horizons, other reading   March Knowing New Horizons, other reading
  November Courage New Horizons, other reading   April Wonder New Horizons
  December Connection New Horizons, other reading   May Honesty New Horizons
  January Discipline New Horizons, other reading   June Play New Horizons

Books Exploring those Themes

Author Title Availability
March 2014: Knowing
John A. Buehrens Understanding the Bible: An Introduction for Skeptics, Seekers, and Religious Liberals Our Library
Eugene T. Gendlin Focusing TPL
Malcolm Gladwell Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking TPL
Theodore Parker A Discourse of Matters Pertaining to Religion TPL, online
  (more books, and videos, listed in the New Horizons March newsletter)
February 2014: Passion
Joseph Campbell Pathways to Bliss TPL
Roger Housden, editor Dancing with Joy and Risk Everything TPL
Barbara Sher Refuse to Choose!: Use All of Your Interests, Passions, and Hobbies to Create the Life and Career of Your Dreams TPL
January 2014: Discipline
Eric Walker Wikstrom Simply Pray Our library
Karen Armstrong Twelve Steps to a Compassionate Life TPL
Scott Alexander Everyday Spiritual Practice Our library
Kate Braestrup Beginner's Grace TPL
Brenda Miller The Pen and the Bell: Mindful Writing in a Busy World Our library
Harry C. Meserve The Practical Meditator Our library
Naranjo How to Be Our library
Barbara B. Taylor An Altar in the World Our library
Evelyn Underhill Practical Mysticism Our library, ebook
December 2013: Connection
James Luther Adams The Prophethood of All Believers (section "Vocation and Voluntary Associations") Our library
Kornfield & Feldman Stories of the Spirit, Stories of the Heart (section "Compassion and the Need to Touch One Another") Our library
S. & O. Levine Embracing the Beloved Our library
Helen Forsey Circles of Strength: Community Alternatives to Alienation Our library
Jack Kornfield After the Ecstasy, the Laundry: How the Heart Grows Wise on the Spiritual Path TPL
November 2013: Courage
Kate Braestrup Here If You Need Me Our library
Paul Tillich The Courage To Be Our library
Philip L. Berman The Courage of Conviction Our library
Kornfield & Feldman Stories of the Spirit, Stories of the Heart (section "The Courage Within Us") Our library
Steven Levine A Year to Live TPL
October 2013: Purpose
Richard N. Potter Spiritual Development for Beginners: A Simple Guide to Leading a Purpose-Filled Life Our library
Eckhart Tolle A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose Our library
Victor N. Claman Acting On Your Faith: Congregations Making a Difference Our library
September 2013: Listening
Kate Braestrup Here If You Need Me Our library
Helen Whitney Forgiveness: a time to love and a time to hate