Some chalica materials adapted from Meredith Plummer, Director of Family Programming, First Unitarian Church of Cincinnati; Kathy E. Smith, DRE.

Some chalica materials adapted from Meredith Plummer, Director of Family Programming, First Unitarian Church of Cincinnati; Kathy E. Smith, DRE.

Chalica is a Unitarian Universalist holiday. It first emerged in 2005 out of a wish to have a holiday celebrating Unitarian Universalist values.

Many UU’s celebrate Chalica during one week in December, focusing on one of the seven UU principles each day.

At UUI, we are celebrating Chalica starting the first Sunday in January, and focusing on a different UU principle each week, for eight weeks. Why eight weeks instead of seven? We are including the proposed eighth principle!

Children in their Sunday groups, Preschool, K-2, 3-5 and Senior High will be focusing on Principles each week. There will be Chalica Bags for families to take home each week to help you explore each week’s principle more deeply as a family. It will include inspiration, ideas, readings, various supplies, including items with which to make a chalice!

And be sure and check in here and our Facebook Page for additional resources!

Happy Chalica!

The Basics


To celebrate Chalica, you will need a chalice. You might already have one but if you don’t, that’s no problem! In the Chalica bag provided at church, we have supplies to make one! Learn more about the history of the symbol of Unitarian Universalism, the flaming chalice.

Create a special place for your chalice. You might want to invite each member of the family to bring special small items to place around the chalice such as mementos, items from nature, photos of family members—living or deceased, art work, etc. to create a family altar.

 How to Celebrate:

Chalica is what you make it. It’s a great opportunity to learn about Unitarian Universalism and practice living out our faith tradition. You can make it as elaborate or as simple as suits your family.

Each night Chalica is celebrated, the chalice is lit and a reading (chalice lighting) is shared.

Activities to explore the principle are planned, simple, homemade gifts can be given to each other, to friends and neighbors, or to those in need in the community.

Perhaps you can think of special foods for Chalica that will form special memories and traditions for your family for years to come!

 Are there decorations?

There can be! Each Principle has a color:

Red = Respect all People (1st Principle)

Orange=Offer Kindness (2nd Principle)

Yellow=say YES! to learning together & accepting each other (3rd Principle)

Green = Grow together by asking lots of questions (4th Principle)

Blue = Believe in your ideals and act on them (5th Principle)

Indigo = Insist on justice, peace and freedom for all (6th Principle)

Violet = Value the earth and all living creatures on it (7th Principle)

Aqua = Accountable dismantle racism & other oppressions in ourselves and our institutions (8th Principle)

Ideas & Resources

day 2.jpg

Week 2: Justice, Equity and Compassion in Human Relations or All People Should Be Treated Fairly and Kindly.   

Chalice Lightings

Chalice Lighting

We light this chalice to remind ourselves

To treat all people kindly

Because they are our siblings

To take good care of the earth

Because it is our home

To live lives full of goodness and love

Because that is how we will make our world

The best place it can be.

Chalice Lighting (attributed to William Penn, Stephen Grellet or Ralph Waldo Emerson)

I shall pass this way but once,

Any good thing I can do, any kindness I can show to another human being, let me do it now.

Let me not defer it nor neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again 


The Seven Principles Song (to the tune of Do Re Mi) click for video:

Learn a new line each week:

One! Each Person is Important

Two! Be Kind In All You Do!


Should you be kind to people who are unkind to you?

How should people who commit terrible crimes be treated?



  • When you feel that you want to tell someone something that may be unkind, ask yourself these questions: 1. Does it need to be said? 2. Does it need to be said right now? 3. Does it need to be said by me?

  • Do something nice for someone else, such as support someone who is being treated unkindly, pay for someone else’s food, help a stranger.

  • Find a local justice-seeking organization and offer your time and talents.

  • Add a canned food item in a box or bag every day this week and then donate it to the collection bin in the UUI Social Hall to benefit the Boulevard Place Food Pantry.

  • Think about how your silence can perpetuate injustice. Think of ways you can speak up that will help others.

  • Plan a random act of kindness.



  • Movies about being kind

day 1.jpg

Week 1: The Inherent Worth and Dignity of Every Person or Each Person is Important.

Chalice Lightings

First Principle Chalice Lighting by Rev. Florence Caplow

We light this chalice today in honor of the Unitarian Universalist First Principle: To affirm and promote the inherent worth and dignity of every person.

We recognize that these are not just words to be spoken; instead, they call us out of our comfort into an ever-deepening commitment: a commitment we make to the rights of all whose inherent worth and dignity are denied, diminished, or destroyed by systems of oppression. And they call us into the practice of looking into our own hearts, with courage and honesty.

First Principle Chalice Lighting by Susanne Hinson-Rieger

We light this chalice

To remind us that each of us has a unique spark inside of us

That each of us is special

That every person is important.

May we carry this flame in our hearts

As we honor the special spark we recognize in others.


The Seven Principles Song (to the tune of Do Re Mi) click for video:

Learn a new line each week:

One! Each Person is Important

Hymn #131: Love Will Guide Us (lyrics), youtube video


Is there someone I don’t understand? What can I do to bridge the divide between us?

What makes someone important? Is it their abilities, their job, the way they look, how much money they have?

Is there someone I have treated with disrespect? What can I do to make amends?


  • Write a thank you note to someone for being who they are.

  • Hold a family talent show and allow everyone to showcase their unique talents!

  • Remember that the 1st Principle applies to you, too. You are special so do something nice for yourself this week!

  • Make a card for a neighbor

  • Donate to a local food pantry.

  • Tell someone you love them.

  • Leave affirming notes in public places for strangers to find. You’ll make someone’s day!


  • Movies about dignity, respect, and integrity