A flame within a chalice (a cup with a stem and foot) is a primary symbol of the Unitarian Universalist faith tradition. Many UU congregations, including UUSM, kindle a flaming chalice in gatherings and worships, and feature the chalice symbol prominently.

Hans Deutsch, an Austrian artist, first brought together the chalice and the flame as a Unitarian symbol during his work with the Unitarian Service Committee during World War II. To Deutsch, the image had connotations of sacrifice and love.

To Unitarian Universalists today, the flaming chalice is a symbol of hope, the sacred, the quest for truth, the warmth of community, the light of reason, and more. At UUSM, we light a flaming chalice at the beginning of worship and on other occasions to create a reverent space for reflection, prayer, meditation, singing, being and working together. At the close of such occasions, we say together these words, written by Elizabeth Selle Jones:

We extinguish this flame but not the light of truth,
the warmth of community,
or the fire of commitment.
These we carry in our hearts until we are together again.