The Memorial Church has been the home of progressive religion in the city of Cambridge since 1904. It is rooted in the liberal Christian and Enlightenment traditions stretching back to Isaac Newton, John Locke and beyond. Although this church is, denominationally speaking, Unitarian, our concern as a community is far wider and we continue to strive for a broader understanding among religious and secular groups and we endeavour, in a spirit of enquiry, to appreciate truth, beauty and goodness in whatever form of religion or philosophy these may be found. We welcome all free-thinkers and make no demands upon people to abandon any loyalties they may currently have to other religious or philosophical communities.
There is only one orthodoxy here: a love of truth that is a sincere desire to understand how the world is and our place in it.
It is possible to engage with us in this aim at our Sunday services, or if you have other commitments on your Sundays, we also offer a range of events throughout the year that you will find by exploring this website.
Sunday 10.30-11.30am - Morning Service
A family service of prayers, hymns, readings, music and an address followed by tea, coffee and conversation and, on the first Sunday of the month, by a Bring and Share Lunch.
Sunday 6.30-7.30pm - Service of Mindfulness Meditation
A quiet service of mindfulness meditation, prayer, reflection and music. In winter this is held by candlelight.
EventsIn addition to our two Sunday services, we organise a small number of events. These include parties like the monthly bring and share lunch - which is like a big indoor picnic, where everybody is welcome. But every term we organise a handful of events focusing in an accessible and practical way on aspects of religious and philosophical thought that might help you live your life better and more enjoyably. Recently they have involved a discussion of Pope Francis’s remarkable letter last year to the atheist proprietor of the Italian newspaper La Repubblica, a course on the naturalistic theology of Henry Nelson Wieman, and a dinner where the consoling thought of the ancient Greek philosopher Epicurus was discussed.
If you would like to begin to explore something of the free-thinking that is currently going on within this community you are on the right page.
Here you’ll find:
Each week on a Sunday morning a fifteen minute address is offered to members of the congregation. It draws on the faith and experience of the person conducting the service and it is offered up simply as encouragement to further reflection and thought. It is most certainly not a definitive statement with which you must agree.
Within this community open-hearted and minded conversation is seen as a central activity. As Bronson Alcott (1799–1888) said: “Conversation as the natural organ communicating, mind with mind, . . . is the method of human culture. By it I come nearer to those whom I shall address than by any other means.”
From time to time we run courses on a single theme over the course of a few weeks. For example, in the past, we have explored Henry David Thoreau’s book, “Walden”, Onora O'Neill’s “A Question of Trust: The BBC Reith Lectures 2002” and a Lent Course on the religious naturalist philosophy of Henry Nelson Wieman.
We are about to run a four-week course this October on what we can learn from Marcus Aurelius’ doctor, Galen. This is being run in conjunction with Exeter University.
On this page you will find a variety of links to online pieces and digital books that may be of interest to people exploring a liberal religious and philosophical outlook for the first time.