Three Winter Holiday Services at UU Santa Monica

Girl gazes down at a candle she holds - Christmas candlelight service

UUSM welcomes all to delight in tradition, reverence, and fellowship.

UU Santa Monica welcomes congregants, friends, and the public to delight in the spirit of the season. Please join us in-person and online for Winter Holiday Services celebrated in our historic sanctuary at 18th and Arizona. UUSM has three services and an informal gathering to celebrate the season this year.

“Hanukkah and Kwanzaa candles are lit, Christmas trees and Yule Logs are illuminated, and sacred stories of new stars and babies being born are retold in this season of wonder. We can find renewal in the spaciousness, stillness, and restfulness of the winter, and in the holiday stories of light, hope, and peace.”

— UUSM Developmental Minister Rev. Jeremiah Lal Shahbaz Kalendae

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Sunday, December 18 • 10:30 am

Winter Festivals of Light

The longest night of the year — the Winter Solstice — arrives in a few days and ancient festivals of light will be celebrated in Jewish, Pagan, and Christian traditions. Let us venture into the darkness and learn from the wisdom of the sacred stories of these traditions.

Saturday, December 24 • 6:00 pm

Holy Starlight: A Christmas Eve Candlelight Service

Join us for a very special Christmas Eve Candlelight Service, a multi-generational gathering, followed by refreshments and fellowship.

Sunday, December 25 • 10:30 am

December 25th Gathering

Although there will be no usual church service, the Sanctuary will be open 10:30 to 11:30 am for anyone who wants to gather at church on this day.

Sunday, January 1 • 10:30 am

Face the Music and Dance

Church member, popular guest speaker, and UCLA oncology chaplain Michael Eselun will explore the dance we do between acceptance and self-compassion. If we reach for acceptance of our circumstances as a pathway to inner peace, what part does self-compassion play?

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Come, come, whoever you are!

UU Santa Monica is located at 1260 18th Street, Santa Monica, CA 90404 (map). Ample parking for the services listed here can be found at the UCLA Hospital parking structure around the corner; follow the signs to 16th Street and Arizona Avenue, and ask the attendant for a UUSM parking permit. We suggest that on December 24 you arrive early and park in the UCLA parking structure. The parking structure will not be open for the December 25th gathering. Handicapped parking is available behind the church.

Childcare will not be available over the holidays, but kids are most welcome to participate in the intergenerational services December 18 and 24.

To keep our members and visitors as safe as possible, vaccinations are required and masks are strongly recommended while attending services or events inside the Sanctuary, Forbes Hall, and the cottage. If you or someone in your household are not feeling well or have tested positive for COVID, please stay home.

You’ll find us streaming LIVE on Facebook and YouTube, except for the December 25th Gathering. Services are also available 24/7, on the Sermons page of our website. To join in the livestream chat on social media, you will need to log into your personal social media account. But anyone may view the services any time, without logging in. We encourage you to light a chalice or candle at home, meditate, and sing along.

UUSM was founded in 1927. We are part of the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations and are not limited to one central truth or theology. Rather, we celebrate the ability to bring many different understandings of truth into one conversation. UUs celebrate unity in diversity, affirming the worth and dignity of all persons, held by a common commitment to love. Our community is a Welcoming Congregation, welcoming all persons and families regardless of sexual orientation. UUSM is also an active center for social justice, peace, and sustainability. For a full calendar of events visit