Adult Religious Education & Enrichment Opportunities
Classes and Workshops:
New Adult Enrichment Opportunity:
Exploring Unitarian Universalism Through Short Literature
Starting Oct. 9, 2022, Rev. Ritchie will be offering a monthly series exploring important themes in Unitarian Universalist history, theology, ethics, and spiritual practice through the discussion of short pieces of literature. This series will take place at 12:00-1:30PM the second Sunday of the month, running October-February. You can attend either in person at church, or online on Zoom. You can sign up either for the whole series, or for individual sessions. Participants will be expected to complete the short readings (no more than 1-2 hours of dedicated reading time) before the workshops. No need to procure the material—Rev. Ritchie will send that out to those who register ahead of time. The individual classes are as follows:
Oct. 9, 2022
Today we explore the historical origins of Unitarianism in America as a revision of the Puritan past, and as a conversation about the nature of sin and free will. Readings are two short stories (slightly spooky for October!) by Nathaniel Hawthorne, “The Birthmark” and “The Minister’s Black Veil.”
November 13, 2022
In this workshop, we discuss the principles of Unitarian Universalist ethical thinking, alongside a conversation about Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s story “The Yellow Wallpaper.”
December 11, 2022
This month we look at the Unitarian Universalist relationship to Christianity, Jesus, and social change, through an examination of two Christmas Stories, Lydia Marie Child’s “The Christ Child and the Poor Children” and Rev. Samuel Crother’s “A Christmas Parable.”
January 8, 2023
Today we look at Unitarian Universalist spiritual practice, especially those connected to the Transcendentalists. The reading is “The Pond in Winter” by Thoreau (an excerpt from “Walden”) and an excerpt from Louisa May Alcott’s “Transcendentalist Wild Oats.”
February 12, 2023
This month we read works by Francis Ellen Watkins Harper and Slyvia Plath to discuss Unitarian Universalist approaches to issues of race and gender.
Sign up for one, some or all of the workshops here:
New Adult Enrichment Opportunity
A Space for Reflection, offered by Karen McGuire
Life has a way of rushing by. Sometimes we feel the need to pause or to reflect more deeply. Join me for a virtual half hour of mindful contemplation that is inclusive, non-judgmental and expectation free. I’ll bring a mix of poetry, music, breathing practice, silence, or meditation to create a space for you to relax. Participants are muted. Feel free to turn your video off. Please engage in whatever way feels most meaningful to you. A Space for Reflection is freely offered the third Wednesday of the month at 7:00pm on Zoom beginning in February. Registration is required (link here).
As for me, Karen McGuire, I’m a lifelong UU, a retired educator, and a trained Interspiritual companion who finds it necessary to stop every once and awhile and pay attention.
Spirit of Life New Adult Enrichment Class Feb. 5-28, 2023
Join Intern minister Jacquie Zarley for a four-week adult education class (with weekly sessions online or in person) offering space, time, and community to explore Unitarian Universalist spirituality. Each session focuses on a different aspect of the spiritual life, framed by the lyrics of Carolyn McDade’s song “Spirit of Life.” Like the song, this class is designed to be welcoming to Unitarian Universalists of many spiritual and theological persuasions. Participants are invited to claim an inclusive definition of spirituality and recognize the spiritual aspects of their lives. Reflecting, speaking, and listening are core activities in each session.
- Become familiar with a broad and inclusive definition of spirituality—one that includes those who do and do not affirm the existence of spirit or deity
- Evaluate their experiences of the spiritual during turning points in their lives and during day-to-day living
- Learn methods for being attentive to their spirituality
- Consider the value of spiritual practice, in any variety of forms, as a means to deepen faith and enhance the quality of everyday living
- Participate in the spiritual practices of speaking and listening with respect
- Explore a vocabulary of reverence drawn from the Unitarian Universalist hymnbook Singing the
- Living Tradition and its supplement, Singing the Journey
- Articulate thoughts, feelings, and longings in authentic ways, and develop their understanding of the spiritually healing value of such authenticity
- Explore possibilities for deepening experiences of spirituality for themselves and for others in the context of their Unitarian Universalist congregation
In person sessions weekly beginning Sunday Feb. 5 at 12:00 pm
Online sessions weekly beginning Tuesday Feb. 7 at 7:00 pm
Sessions last one hour
Please sign up in person on bulletin board in Fellowship Hall or online, using this link.
Soul Matters Small Groups invite people to deepen their connection to self, others, and spirit, through regular monthly meetings, reflection and spiritual practice. Soul Matters Small Groups consist of 6-8 people, one of whom acts as facilitator, who meet once a month for one and a half hours. Like covenant groups, group meetings provide opportunity for personal check-ins, with the additional of a mutual exploration of a monthly theme. We currently have three soul matters groups meeting through ZOOM video conferencing. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in joining.
Brown Bag Books The group is currently meeting at church at noon the second Tuesday of each month. Contact email@example.com to join.
Wednesday Noon Check In. Enjoy unstructured conversations with NUUC members and friends, Noon each Wednesday on Zoom. email revritchie@aol for the link.