The Unitarian Universalist Flower Communion service was originated in 1923 by Dr. Norbert Capek founder of the modern Unitarian movement in Czechoslovakia (now the Czech Republic). On the last Sunday before the summer recess of the Unitarian church in Prague, all the children and adults participated in this colorful ritual, which gives concrete expression to the humanity affirming principles of our liberal faith.
When the Nazis took control of Prague in 1940, they found Dr. Capek’s gospel of the inherent worth and beauty of every human person to be, as Nazi court records show, “too dangerous to the Reich [for him] to be allowed to live.” Dr. Capek was sent to Dachau, where he was killed the next year during a Nazi “medical experiment.” This gentle man suffered a cruel death, but his message of human hope and decency lives on through his Flower Communion, which is widely celebrated today. It helps us remember the principles and dreams for which Dr. Capek died.
Adapted from “
The Flower Communion: A Service of Celebration for Religious Liberals”
by Reginald Zottoli