Ventura High School student Tori Plueger will deliver the "student Sunday" sermon Sunday at College United Methodist Church in Ventura. Tori will be joined by a local rock band, Fear Not, and actress Marlene Daigneault at both the 8:50 and 10:30 a.m. services.
The church will also hold its first Sunday of Advent celebration at 5 p.m. the same day with a free spaghetti dinner, crafts and singing.
On Dec. 13, College United will sponsor a dessert concert at 6:30 p.m. The $5 event will feature a choral group, band, solo performances and award-winning violinist Ondine Young, who will direct the concert. Carol singing and dessert will follow. The proceeds will benefit Project Understanding and College United Methodist Church's ministry.
The church is at 4300 Telegraph Road, across from Ventura College. For information, call 642-3282.
Talk on Nature Spirituality
* The Rev. Dick Weston-Jones, minister of Ventura's Unitarian Universalist Church, will speak at Canoga Park's Unitarian Universalist Church on Sunday. His topic, "Nature Spirituality and Unitarian Universalists," will trace the church's heritage of nature spirituality from its roots to the present day, said Karen Moore of the church.
Weston-Jones is also director of the church's eco-spirituality program, WhaleCoast. He describes himself as a religious naturalist.
The Canoga Park church is at 7404 Jordan Ave. The Ventura church is at 4949 Foothill Road. For information, call 644-3898.
Youth Group Seeks Donations
* United Synagogue Youth of Temple Etz Chaim in Thousand Oaks is seeking donations of household goods and clothing to benefit people in Third World countries.
Dubbed "Rags to Riches," the project will oversee a drop-off bin in the temple parking lot at 1080 E. Janss Road through Sunday. Used clothing, shoes, purses, linens, towels, blankets, curtains and bedspreads are needed.
For information, call Joan Sandoval at 497-6891.
Advent Series to Begin
* An Advent series "How Can I Better Prepare for the Coming of the Prince of Peace?" begins Wednesday at St. Anthony's Church in Oxnard. Sister Karen Wilhelmy, director of adult faith formation at the church, will present sessions Wednesday and Dec. 10 and 17 at 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. To enroll, call 486-7301 by Monday.
St. Anthony's will celebrate the rite of acceptance into the catechumenate Sunday during the 9 a.m. liturgy.
The church, at 2511 South C St., may be reached at 486-0018.
Puppeteers to Perform
* JFC-Temple Ner Ami in Camarillo will hold a Hanukkah program titled "A Day to Remember" at 5 p.m. Wednesday featuring the Alphabet Soup Puppeteers. The half-hour show is appropriate for all school-age children and tells the story of Hanukkah, in which a small army of Jews fought for the right to practice their religion.
Before and after the show, games and a Hanukkah bazaar will feature local vendors selling holiday gifts and baked goods.
JFC-Temple Ner Ami is a 150-family Reform congregation that meets at 4098 Calle Tesoro, Suite D. The 5-year-old congregation offers Shabbat and holiday services, social events, adult and children's classes. For information, call the temple at 388-3824.
* A living nativity and musical will be performed in Ventura's Plaza Park at 6:30 and 8 p.m. Friday. Students from Ventura County Christian High School will enact the drama of the nativity in costume, with song and piano accompaniment.
"It's a celebration of Christmas," said Lisa Darby, who is helping the students. She suggests that audience members bring blankets or seats.
The event is free; refreshments will be served. The park is at Thompson Boulevard and Chestnut Street.
Variety of Creches on Display
* More than 200 creches, made of everything from a small set of spools of thread to a 30-piece Lenox set, will be exhibited in "A Celebration of Christ--Nativities of the World" at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Ojai.
They can be viewed from noon to 9 p.m. Friday and Dec. 6 and 4:30 to 7 p.m. Dec. 7. A showing for handicapped people is set 10 a.m. to noon Friday.
The church's youngsters will present vocal and instrumental music from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, and adult choirs will sing from 5 to 9 p.m. Dec. 6. The Hallelujah Chorus will be performed at 4:30 p.m. Dec. 7.
The entertainment is free and open to the public. The church is at 411 San Antonio St. For information, call 646-7806.
Unity Center Plans Discussion
* The Unity Center in Westlake Village will offer a discussion Friday on "Your Greatest Gifts."
"Most people have a unique quality, gift or talent just waiting to be discovered and used," the Rev. Irma Oestmann said. "When you find it, a whole new world experience may unfold for you."
The evening begins at 7:30 at the Westlake Village Community Room, 4373 Park Terrace Drive. For information, call (818) 889-5589.
Carols From Around the World
* Camarillo United Methodist Church's Journey Program will present "Christmas Journey Around the World" in the church's Brooks Hall at 4 p.m. Dec. 6.