The Center for Mindfulness at USG wishes you a healthy and peaceful New Year. The schedule for Esther’s Strong and Steady Yoga sessions can be seen on her website. BREATHE is taking a breather until February, 2022.

USG currently offers mindfulness programs VIRTUALLY, under the direction of Ryan Hurd, Director of Spiritual Development.

This page includes all of USG’s practice based spiritual development including meditation, yoga and conscious dance. The Adult Spiritual Development page has discussion based spiritual development.

The Zoom links for all weekly Mindfulness and Wellness sessions are sent out in a separate Saturday email entitled “News and Zoom Links from the Center for Mindfulness at USG.” If you would like to be put on the list to receive these announcements, contact If you have questions about the classes, please email

Teacher Donations and the Practice of Dana                        
In the Buddhist tradition the teachings are offered freely, and the teachers lives are supported by donations (dāna.) Dāna translates into the Buddhist principal of generosity. Please donate to our teachers. USG does not pay or employ the teachers; they provide their services free of charge, and in doing so sustain mindfulness programs at USG. Suggested donation is $10-$20 per session. If you cannot afford this amount, feel free to attend without giving, or give whatever is affordable.

Special Upcoming Program

The Practice of Recovery: A Buddhist Approach to Living Free from Addiction

This program is appropriate for both new and experienced meditators — All are welcome.

Join Kevin Griffin for a day of practice and discussion via this online session hosted by Delaware Valley Insight and the Unitarian Society of Germantown.

Dana (Generosity) will be well received and shared with Kevin to support him in offering this program.

On this daylong retreat we will explore the connections between Buddhist teachings and the path of recovery. Our focus will be mindfulness practices that can support recovering addicts, alcoholics, and anyone else dealing with addictive behaviors. We will connect the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path with Twelve Step and other recovery tools, using meditation, lecture, dialog, and interactive exercises.  There is a Sliding Scale including Free option. Learn more and register here.

Recurring Programs

Click on any program title below to go to a full description.

Wednesday Mid-Week Mindfulness with Deborah Cooper
Thursday Mindfulness with Jesse Frechette
Yoga Programs with Esther Wyss-Flamm
Sunday Breathe Mindfulness Sessions


Meditations for the Mid-Week led by Deborah Cooper, Wednesdays, 2:30-3:30pm 

Please join Deborah Cooper as she leads us into calm and reflection with meditation, inspiring writings and poems from the great meditation teachers, and teachings based on her own extensive training as a mindfulness teacher.  Deborah also shares how she has applied mindfulness in her own life experiences and guides us in applying mindfulness to ours.  

Dana to Deborah:


Online with Jesse Frechette from 7:15-8:30pm 
Please note that links are case-sensitive.

Appropriate for all levels. Enter into this practice with a beginner’s mind and fresh eyes, whether this is your first time or you have been practicing for many years.
The fee to the instructor for this one hour session is $15-$20 if financial circumstances allow, but no amount is too small and all are welcome regardless of ability to pay.
Please send to:
Venmo: Send to Jesse-Frechette-1
Use PayPal under “family and friends” and send to: 
Mail check to: 1405 Reiner Rd., Eagleville, PA 19403

Esther’s Strong and Steady Yoga

For more information and links, go to or contact Esther at:


Breathe Mindfulness, Sundays 5-6pm

The Breathe mindfulness class format consists of guided meditations, teaching, and discussion geared to support and enhance the practice of both experienced and beginner meditators.

The sessions will be led by the following outstanding and  experienced  teachers in rotation- Pamela Freeman, Mary Kalyna, Jesse Frechette, Deborah Cooper and Rev. Kent Matthies.

Most 1st Sundays- Pamela Freeman
Pamela Freeman, LCSW, has been a psychotherapist for over 25 years, working with individuals, families, and couples. She is also a long-time social activist working on issues of gender, race, class, and anti-violence in many places around the country. A graduate of School of Playback Theatre and founder of Playback for Change in Philadelphia, Pamela also founded the Philadelphia Black Women’s Health Project.

A practitioner of mindfulness meditation, she co-leads the People of Color “Sit” in Philadelphia and serves on the Insight Meditation Board of Directors. Pamela is also a graduate of the Aboriginal Indigenous therapy program. Contact info –

Dana to Pamela:

  • Paypal at: or
  • US mail: 6655 McCallum Street Apt 101. Philadelphia PA 19119 (Please note address change as of 1.28.2021)

Most 2nd Sundays- Mary Kalyna
Mary Kalyna has practiced Vipassana Meditation for 30 years. She has taught classes in the Philadelphia area and was facilitator of the Rainbow Buddhist Meditation Group at the William Way Center. Mary is a lifelong activist, from initiating the first Earth Day at her high school, through anti-war organizing, women’s and LGBT rights, anti-racism and economic injustice, and support for human rights in Ukraine. She has been part of the USG choir since 2011 and also sings with Voices Rising Philly, a group formed in 2016 to sing at protests. Contact Mary at

Dana to Mary:

  • Paypal at:
  • US Mail at: 138 W. Sedgewick St., Philadelphia, PA 19119

Most 3rd Sundays- Jesse Frechette
Jesse Frechette, LCSW, is the founder/ director of Center Mindful, providing services virtually and sometimes live. He is a mindfulness educator, coach, and mindfulness-based psychotherapist, committed to diversity, inclusion, equity, and supporting individuals, couples, and families with better mental health. Jesse has additional competency in supporting LGBTQ+ individuals, couples, families, and others who experience prejudice and discrimination. Contact:

Dana to Jesse:

Most 4th Sundays- Deborah Cooper
Deborah Cooper, M.Ed., has been a counselor for 35 years and is the former coordinator of the Friends Counseling Service. She has a small private psychotherapy practice in Mt. Airy, PA. Her chief interest for the last 14 years has been mindfulness meditation. She trained to teach mindfulness meditation at Jefferson, teaches several meditation groups, and sits a month-long silent retreat annually. She has taught many workshops at USG,and leads a weekly USG class on Wednesday called Meditation for the Mid-Week. Contact:

Dana to Deborah:

Most 5th Sundays Reverend Kent Matthies
Rev. Kent Matthies, senior Minster at USG, was trained in mindfulness leadership at the Jefferson University Hospital Practicum for professionals.  Kent enthusiastically integrates mindfulness with Unitarian Universalist theology and spiritual practices in worship, pastoral care and USG programs for children and adults. Contact info

Dana to Kent:

  • Web payment at:
  • Text: 215-608-2660 & enter 00 mindful (amount – space – mindful)
  • US Mail at: 6511 Lincoln Drive, Philadelphia, PA 19119. Memo line: “Mindfulness”

Unitarian Universalism and Buddhism

Like UU’s “free and responsible search for meaning”, Buddhism is non-creedal. In his first mindfulness precept, Thich Nhat Hahn says Buddhist teachings are not doctrines but guiding means to help us develop understanding and compassion. One of the Buddha’s last teachings was to “be a lamp unto yourself”.

The inherent worth and dignity of every person is evident in Buddhist teaching that everything in the universe shares Buddha nature.

The Universalist emphasis on the saving power of love can be seen in the Mahayana Bodhisattva vow to renounce nirvana until all beings are enlightened, and in reverence for Avolokiteshvara, the bodhisattva of great compassion.

UU respect for the interdependent web of all existence mirrors the Buddhist teaching of emptiness, what Thich Nhat Hahn calls inter-being–that everything in the universe exists only in its connection with everything else, and nothing has an absolute separate identity.

UU affinity for Buddhism goes back to Thoreau. There has been an active Unitarian Universalist Budddhist Fellowship for many years. It is still considered an independent affiliate of the UUA.