Visitor Information and FAQs

Beacon Unitarian Church welcomes you!

If you are looking for a warm and vibrant community, if you are here to begin a spiritual journey or to deepen your present path, if you have big questions that need complex answers and people to engage with, if you are looking to connect with curious, positive and socially committed people, my hope is that you have found the right place.

Beacon Unitarian has been around since 1982 and is part of the world wide Unitarian movement. We are a people moved by compassion to make this world a fairer and more just place for all. We are inspired by many sources, from science to poetry, from the beauty of the natural world to the beauty in courageous action. We are inspired by the thread that weaves through all this diversity.

Warmly,
Rev. Debra Thorne

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Unitarianism?

We are people of all ages, people of many backgrounds, and people of many beliefs. We create spirituality and community beyond boundaries, working for more justice and more love in our own lives and in the world.

Our spirituality is unbounded – drawing from scripture and science, nature and philosophy, personal experience and ancient tradition – see our Sources of Tradition.

Unitarian Universalists believe that each person is free to search for his or her own personal truth in regard to the nature and meaning of life.

Unitarian Universalists affirm and promote Seven Principles (Values).

With excerpts from www.uua.org/beliefs.

We are associated with other Unitarian, Universalist and Unitarian Universalist congregations throughout Canada, the U.S. and the world.

When are the services?

Services are held at 10:30 am each Sunday from mid-September to mid-June. Services last for approximately one hour and fifteen minutes (see our Service Description page for upcoming service topics).

Where are the services?

The services are conducted at The Sapperton Pensioners’ Hall in New Westminster 318 Keary St. New Westminster, BC. The Hall near the intersection of Keary and East Columbia in Sapperton, so it is near the Sapperton SkyTrain Station and the Royal Columbian Hospital. During the summer months, services are generally held in members’ homes (check the website during the summer).

What’s the best way to get there by public transit?

Take the Expo Line SkyTrain to the Sapperton Station. Walk for approximately 6 minutes (450 m) to the Sapperton Pensioners’ Hall at 318 Keary St. New Westminster, BC.

Where should I park?

Parking for the Sunday services, and for any Saturday Beacon event, is available in the parking lot at the back of Sapperton Hall, and in the lane behind the Hall. Parking in the lane, next to the Professional Building, is available to us also, including the spaces that say they are reserved for staff.

There is additional parking in the lot behind the Professional Building, which is accessed from Simpson St., with the exception of the one space that is nearest the street and is clearly marked as Reserved for MCFD emergency vehicles. This reserved space must not be used at any time. Foot access to the lane and thus Sapperton Hall is through the cedar hedge.

If parking in the limited spots on Keary St., one must be sure to obey the city parking signs. There are metered spaces close to the Hall, and free spaces further up the hill. Do not park in the spaces reserved for residents. There is similar street parking on Simpson.

Are my kids welcome?

Absolutely. Beacon recognizes the vital contribution families make to a healthy congregation and we strive to provide a fun, welcoming and safe environment to do so. If you are new to Beacon, here are a few things we thought you might like to know.

  • If your child(ren) remains with you in the service, there are quiet-activity supplies available if needed—check with the greeters.
  • If you would like care for children aged five and under, there is a supervised nursery to the left of the stage.
  • During the ‘story for all ages,’ all children are invited (but not required) to sit as a group at the front, for the duration of the story.
  • Immediately following the story, children aged five and up are invited to join us downstairs for multi-aged programming. We offer a Religious Exploration program for children and youth starting at 5 years old. Through the program, children are exposed to Unitarian Universalist values as they explore new ideas and concepts. For more information on services for young people, see: Religious Explorations and Infants and Young Children and Youth Group.
  • Parents and guardians are welcome to accompany their children at any time.
Is the congregation “Queer Positive”?

Absolutely. Unitarians have welcomed gay parish ministers for the last quarter century, long before most other religious groups. More specifically, Beacon Unitarian is a recognized Welcoming Congregation. Whatever your sexual orientation, whatever your gender identity, you don’t have to pretend or hide or feel left out. Come as you are!

Is the building wheelchair accessible?

Yes, the Sapperton Old Aged Pensioners Hall is very wheelchair accessible with ramps and elevators.

What should I wear?

Dress up or dress casually; you won’t be alone whichever you choose.

How can I get I information on wedding, funerals and other rites of passage?

Our Lay Chaplains provide meaningful rites of passage including weddings, services of union, child dedications funeral and memorial services for the general public, including interfaith couples and the LGBT community. Learn more about our services at Weddings and Special Ceremonies.

Is the Beacon Unitarian Congregation associated with Unity, Unification, or the United Church?

No. We have no formal relationship with those organizations.

Can I subscribe to your newsletter?

Yes, just click here to subscribe to our monthly newsletter.

Beacon Unitarian Congregation

We are located in the Sapperton Pensioners’ Hall
318 Keary Street, New Westminster
Two blocks from the Sapperton Skytrain Station

Mailing Address:
Beacon Unitarian Congregation
#414 – 552A Clarke Road
Coquitlam, V3J 0A3

One final note—we love to sing! Every service includes music, from congregational hymns to instrumental solos. The Beacon Choir is an integral part of two services a month. Enthusiastic singers are always welcome to join the choir.