72425 Via Vail
Rancho Mirage, CA 92270

Chalice Circles

….Foster spiritual growth by building spiritual partnerships in a small group setting. They are a  safe space to discuss spiritual topics while strengthening relationships.

Over the past few years more than 40 people from our congregation have participated in Chalice Circles. This year, circles will begin the third week of October and will meet monthly through April 2024.

What is a Chalice Circle?

Composed of six-eight members and led by a volunteer facilitator, Chalice Circles offer opportunities to get to know other members and friends of our congregation and encourage our own spiritual growth. Unlike classes or discussion groups, Circles are designed to give time for personal reflection and sharing, and listening to others without the need to fix or respond. In this way each person is free to take in the wisdom that speaks to them and to their spiritual path. Each meeting begins with lighting the Chalice and time to share what is happening in our lives. This is followed by some brief readings and a few questions to spark our thoughts and feelings. We then share from our own experiences and listen to those of others.

During 2023, UU congregations across the country will discuss the proposed values and covenant that will replace the Seven Principles. Our Circles will explore how these values connect to our personal spiritual paths. Each month we will delve into one of the six values – Interdependence, Pluralism, Justice, Transformation, Generosity, Equity, plus the overarching value of Love.

We will try to create Circles that meet your preferences for day or evening sessions, all women or all men, or mixed, meeting in person or by Zoom.

Here are some examples of past Chalice Circle topics


Reverend Ian’s sermon on January 9th “We Are How We Treat Each Other and Nothing More,” focused on the richness and lovingness of our relationships. This month we’ll delve into what makes friendships rich and loving. How have our friendships influenced the ways we treat others

Friendship Discussion Guide

Grace in Aging

Drawing on the wonderful wisdom that was shared by Peter, Bryna, Fran, Ginger and Hiroshi at the March 27th Sunday service, Aging with Grace, we’ll explore our experiences with aging. As Betty Friedan says: “Aging is not lost youth, but a new stage of opportunity and strength.” We also know it has its surprises and uncertainties. Sit back and open your hearts. How is it going for you?

Grace in Aging Discussion Guide

Love is a Verb

It’s February, and many people’s minds gravitate to love, romance, perhaps chocolate.  Reverend Ian’s sermon on February 13, 2022, explores how people build relationships and connect. Drawing upon the sermon, we will consider love as a verb. What do you do to sustain and nurture love?

Love is a Verb Discussion Guide

Spiritual Practices and Change

This month we draw on Reverend Ian’s February 27, 2022, sermon “When Our Heart is in a Holy Place: Spiritual Practices and Change” to explore our own spiritual practices and what they mean to us and how they have impacted our lives.

Spiritual Practices and Change Discussion Guide

Chalice Circle Covenant

Chalice Circles are governed by a Covenant, a promise how we will conduct ourselves and how we will treat others.  It is designed to create a safe space, enabling us to build trust so that we can freely explore spiritual issues and share from the heart.  It is a living document, that members can modified to address the needs of the Circle.

These are the personal promises we make to each other:

I will make a sincere effort to attend all sessions.

I will notify the facilitator if I have to be absent.

I will be considerate of my fellow members by arriving, starting, and ending on time.

I will respect the confidentiality of the group.

I will speak from personal experience and refrain from giving advice.

I will participate and also self-moderate, so that others may speak.

I will honor the desire of anyone “to pass.”

I will be responsible for keeping the discussion “on track”.

I will strive to listen fully.

I will let the group know if I choose to leave the group.

I will do my best, with the help of everyone in the group, to assure that this Covenant is followed and affirmed in order to maintain a safe environment.


Let us know that you are interested in joining a Chalice Circle by completing this form.