Our Minister

Rev. Joseph M Cherry (Rev. Joe)


My name is Reverend Joe Cherry and I am the fairly new minister here at the Unitarian Universalist Society of Cleveland. Before moving to Cleveland I, and my partner the Reverend Denis Paul, lived in the Central Valley of California, where we both had ministries. Rev. Denis is currently the Developmental Minister at the East Shore Unitarian Universalist Church in Kirtland, OH.

If you’re like most people we’ve met, you’re asking some variation of the following question: “Why would anybody move from California to Cleveland?”

There were several factors in our decision to move to Ohio. Our geographic choice was inspired by our desire to move back closer to our families. But there were many church options available to us, and we chose the two churches we did for good reasons.

I chose to come to the Society because it’s a church that is open, friendly, and looking to break out into a new direction.

We don’t know what that new direction is yet, but we’re gathering our talents to move.

As for my part, if you’re reading this site, consider giving us a visit, I hope you do. In this congregation we have all sorts of theologies, from Atheism and Buddhism to Christianity and Pagan beliefs. Not sure what you believe? That’s okay, too.

I think that people come to a church because they’re looking for something. I know it’s why I did 20 years ago. I hadn’t really ever been to church, and I started going because I’d just moved to a new city and didn't know anybody.

If you claim to be “spiritual, but not religious,” check us out. We are religious, but not in the way perhaps you’re used to. Here you’ll hear the world’s religious texts given equal amounts of respect and reverence. The same goes for secular literature, sociology, history, etc.

Come by any Sunday at 10:45 a.m. for some musical meditation before service, or some coffee and conversation. Service starts at 11:00.

I’m sure I’d be delighted to meet you.

Reverend Joe

Notes From Our Minister

The Beacon - November 1, 2015

Dear Members and Friends,

The Society has a lot going on this month!

We have our “Bring a Friend to Church!” Sunday, November 1st. Members are encouraged to bring a friend with them to church, someone you think has similar values that we do, someone who might be looking for a community like the one we have here.

So often I have been asked the question “Why is that church (for example the Heights Gateway Church around the corner) so full?” In large part, it is because people there invite their friends to go to church with them.

Don’t forget, for yourself or the friend(s) you invite that Daylight Savings Time kicks in on Halloween night at 2 a.m. Remember to “Fall Back.”

On November 8, we welcome Dave Clements, Intern Minister at our sister congregation in Kent. Dave is a student at Meadville Lombard, and before he went to seminary, he was a fundraiser for many of the large symphonies in the U.S., including Cleveland. Come hear him talk about the importance of the arts in a spiritual life.

Also on November 8th, we are launching The Betty Lau Gallery, in our entry hall upstairs. The Lau Gallery will focus on featuring local student artists. Our partnership this year is focusing on students at Cleveland State University, and next year we’ll be looking for more students to feature.

If you have any of Betty’s work at home, please bring it to the Society by Thursday, November 5th, so we can feature her pieces all together in a reunion show to launch the new gallery.

And lastly on November 8th, we are having our first Music for Food Concert. This partnership between the Society and members of the Cleveland Institute of Music is a new creation, inspired by both the Music for Food Concert program in Boston, and initiated through our work with Musicians’ Towers across the street.

The concert is a full concert, featuring faculty and students at the Cleveland Institute of Music. Admission is a free will monetary offering that goes directly to the Greater Cleveland Food Bank. Be sure to invite music lovers that you know to help in this good cause!

Speaking of Musician’s Towers, on November 21st, we’ll be repeating our Gratitude Dinner. Gratitude Dinner is intended to express our Gratitude for our bounty by sharing it with others, namely our neighbors. There are a lot of
ways to get involved with this effort.

Look for announcements this month with further information.

We certainly have a full month ahead of us, but it’s all good things to be doing!

In Faith,
Rev. Joe


October 1, 2015

September 1, 2015

August 1, 2015

July 1, 2015

June 1, 2015

May 1, 2015

April 1, 2015

March 1, 2015

February 1, 2015

January 1, 2015

December 1, 2014

November 1, 2014

October 1, 2014

September 1, 2014

August 1, 2014

July 1, 2014

June 1, 2014

May 1, 2014

April 1, 2014

March 1, 2014

February 1, 2014

January 1, 2014

December 1, 2013

November 1, 2013

October 1, 2013

September 1, 2013

August 1, 2013

July 1, 2013

June 1, 2013

May 1, 2013:  Leading from Strengths

April 1, 2013:  The Gift of Time

March 1, 2013:  Building A Healthy Foundation

February 1, 2013:  What Gifts Can We Bring?

January 4, 2013:  The Work of a New Year

December 1, 2012:  Inns, Ancient Stories, Open Hears and Open Doors

November 1, 2012:  Things to Make the Season Bright

October 1, 2012:  The Stories We Carry

September 1, 2012:  What DOES One Do at a Transition Workshop?