Our Story

The idea for WellSprings began with some visionary Unitarian Universalists in the greater Philadelphia area. For years there had been discussions about planting a new religious community in north central Chester County. This culminated in a partnership between the Main Line Unitarian Church, the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), and the Joseph Priestley District of the denomination.


In March of 2005, representatives from the UUA and Joseph Priestley District hired Rev. Ken Beldon to lead this new venture. Beginning in the later summer of 2005, Rev. Ken held a series of focus groups for interested people to discuss the emerging vision for WellSprings. From these gatherings, the Planting Team was formed--a group of people, some UU, some Unchurched Seekers--who were devoted to building a healthy, vibrant community which could grow.


Meeting weekly for seven months, they focused on their personal spiritual development and building community with each other. Out of this discernment and also interviews with people in our area, the core Values and Beliefs were articulated.


On the basis of this identity, we formed Springboards in the summer of 2006. These small groups for spiritual growth focused on perennial religious questions. In the ten session gatherings, people had a chance to share fellowship, grow in their understanding of their faith life, offer service to our community, and share in the vision that animates WellSprings.


In the fall of 2006, Kathy Ellis was hired to be our Director of Leadership and Spiritual Development and Carol Klekotka was hired to be our Office Administrator. Weekly worship services and YouthSpirit, weekly sessions of spiritual development for children and youth, started in January of 2007. Then in the fall of 2008, Becky McAndrews was hired to be our YouthSpirit Director. As Kathy moved to her ministerial internship in the spring of 2009, Maria Jacobs was hired to be Springboard Coordinator.


WellSprings is excited to move into the future, to provide meaningful worship, to equip families to grow together spiritually, to be a strong presence for liberal religious values in our community: to be the kind of community that generously shares who we are and what we have to give with our world.




New Life Ripples Out Through Spiritual Growth and Development

Quotes We Like

Some Quotes to Lead the Soul...

"Speak to us about the deepest yearning of our hearts, about our many wishes, about hope; not about the many strategies for (mere) survival, but about trust; not about new methods of satisfying our emotional needs, but about love.  Speak to us about a vision larger than our changing perspectives and about a voice deeper than the clamorings of our mass media.  Yes, speak to us about something or someone greater than ourselves. Speak to us about.....God."


--Henri J.M. Nouwen




"When everything that matters can be bought and sold, when commitments can be broken because they are no longer to our advantage, when shopping becomes salvation and advertising slogans become our litany, when our worth is measured by how much we earn and spend, then the market is destroying the very virtues on which in the long run it depends."

--Jonathan Sacks




The Summer Day

Who made the world?
Who made the swan,and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean--
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down--
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don't know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn't everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?

--Mary Oliver




"Religion is our human response to the dual reality of being alive and having to die."

--Forrest Church




"To clasp the hands in prayer is the beginning of an uprising against the disorder of the world."

--Karl Barth




"You can be pretty sure you have made God in your own image if God hates all the same people you hate."

--Anne Lamott




"To find your religion, it's not enough just to open one's mind and think deeply. Each of us must also open all of our senses and experience the world. Religion grows from the heart as much as the head, and it cries out to fuse body and mind. Faith is an orientation of the whole personality, a total response. It's not just a belief-the holding of certain ideas--which is a function of the mind alone. Beliefs can be expressed in propositional form to which adjectives true and false may be attached. Faith, by contrast, is the opposite of nihilism and despair. It may or may not include beliefs, but it is much larger; it is the ability to experience the universe as meaningful. Having faith means that our lives hold together and make sense at a deeper level. Rather than seeming absurd. Therefore your religion is something you not only think about but also sing, dance, eat, paint, and sculpt. To find your religion you must engage all of your senses. You should feel it as well as explain it, hear it as well as see it. Taste it as well as smell it."


--Scotty McLennan




"Our love is all of God's money."

--Jeff Tweedy




"A conventional 'success story' - one in which with each next step, the protagonist has more money, more respect and more possessions. I'd like to suggest an alternative 'success story' - one where he is closer to finding that spot where he is no longer held back by his heart, explodes with talent, and his character blossoms, and the gift that he has to offer the world is apparent."

--Po Bronson




"All men's miseries derive from not being able to sit in a quiet room alone."

--Pascal




"If the human race perishes it will not be for lack of information, but for lack of appreciation."

--Abraha Joshua Heschel




"Don't ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive."

--Howard Thurman




"I don't want more choice, I want better things!"


--Edina, from AbFab




"Prayer does not change God; it changes the one who offers it."


--Kierkegaard




"I think that we may safely trust a good deal more than we do. The incessant anxiety and strain of some is a well-nigh incurable form of disease. How vigilant we are! Determined not to live by faith if we can avoid it; all the day long on the alert, at night we unwillingly say our prayers and commit ourselves to uncertainties. So thoroughly and sincerely are we compelled to live, reverencing our life, and denying the possibility of change. This is the only way, we say; but there are as many ways as there can be drawn radii from one centre. All change is a miracle to contemplate; but it is a miracle which is taking place every instant."

--Thoreau




"All other spiritual teachings are in vain if we cannot love."


--Jack Kornfield




"What makes me a believer is that from time to time, there have been glimpses I've had which have made me suspect the presence of something extraordinary and beyond the realm of the immediate. You encounter the holy in various forms, which, unless you have your eyes open, you might not even notice."

--Frederick Buechner

Sunday Services

When

Two Services:  9:30 and 11:00 AM

Where

The Montgomery School (Bell Hall)
1141 Kimberton Road (Route 113)
Chester Springs, PA 19425
directions  map

How

Casual and contemporary. Come as you are.

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YouthSpirit

Sunday Mornings

YouthSpirit is just for kids! We strive to create spaces where our kids experience and talk about the things that make living more meaningful, like friendship, gratitude, kindness, forgiveness, and caring for self, each other and all living things. Children begin each Sunday morning in our lively, music-filled service with their families, and are dismissed to YouthSpirit about 25 minutes after the service begins.

Nursery

Our Nursery is staffed all morning with two experienced caregivers who can attend to the needs of our littlest ones (5 and under). We do welcome all ages to stay in our service throughout the entire morning, so please choose what’s best for your family!

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Contact Us

Mailing Address

WellSprings Congregation 
47 Marchwood Road, Suite 2A-2
Exton, PA 19341

Telephone

610-280-3797

Email

Office: office@wellspringsuu.org
Founding Minister, Rev. Ken Beldon:
          ken@wellspringsuu.org
Executive Minister, Rev. Lee Paczulla:
          lee@wellspringsuu.org

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