- Our regular programming will begin Sunday, August 27th with a kickoff campfire and marshmallow roast on the evening of Saturday, August 26th. The year continues through May 19th.
- Ours is a cooperative Religious Education program. We expect all parents who have children registered in R.E. to commit to teach or help in the R.E. program every 2 to 3 years.
- Two worship services are offered most Sundays at 9:00am and 11:30am. Youth Religious Education and Adult Learning is offered at 10:15am.
- Nursery care is provided during both services and the education hour.
Holiday weekends there may be only one service at 10:00am and no education hour. Nursery care will be provided during the service.
- Children and Adults attend the Sunday service together. We sing together, share the joys and concerns of our lives, reflect together in silence, heed the wisdom of ancient and modern words, and listen and respond to thoughts from the minister or others.
- In the classroom, the children and youth interact with their peers using age-appropriate lessons that emphasize self-reflection, kindness, acceptance and delight in the mysteries of our world. They are encouraged to create their own spiritual paths based on our seven principles and interaction with parents and peers. We strive to include children as much as possible in every element of church life. We celebrate special seasons and events with a variety of rites, stories and music, together with our children.
- Register your family for Youth Religious Education here and we’ll add you to the distribution list for classroom links and weekly updates.
August – May Sunday Youth Mornings
Pre-School and Kindergarten Spirit Play
- Spirit Play is a Montessori-based program that teaches children about Unitarian Universalist principles, history, and liturgy through storytelling and play. The Spirit Play classroom is a special, child centered place to be together to discover the spirit of love and mystery that some people call God. Children discover their own answers to the existential questions: Where did we come from? What are we doing here? How do we choose to live our lives?
Core stories of our faith are presented with special props. After the stories children are guided towards making meaning through wondering and art. A spiritual community is created that supports multiple learning styles.
1st – 3rd grade & 4th – 6th grade Young Group Ministry
Each month the church has a theme and each week the worship service and the religious education lessons will follow a topic for that theme. The discussions and activities during this time will align with the message shared in the service.
We use the monthly themes to explore our world and how our UU faith guides us to pursue truth, fairness, justice, compassion, and love. Each class will have age-appropriate activities to engage young people in questioning their place in the world and in answering life’s “big questions.”
The beginning of the year will focus on group bonding to create a safe space for deeper sharing as we explore the themes during the year. The lesson plans for both grade cohorts are typically similar but differ in ways allowing for age-appropriate discussion and activities.
7th & 8th grade Coming of Age (Offered 2023/2024)
Coming of Age ceremonies, marking the transition from childhood to young adult, are as old as history. They have included ritual abductions, vision quests, and bar and bat mitzvahs, all to help youth learn about themselves and prepare for adulthood.
This Coming of Age program is designed to acknowledge the transition between childhood and adolescence. It is a vibrant program focusing on the youths themselves and each unique journey. Coming of age is a transformative experience.
Our goals are to:
- Provide youth with the tools to begin intentionally shaping their own spiritual lives
- Encourage youth to create their own “empowering stories”
- Create a space and time for deep authentic relationships among youth, facilitators, mentors, and the congregation
During the Coming of Age year youth experience learning, testing, ritual, and celebration.
The program includes:
- Sessions tackling life’s “big questions”
- A Chalice Circle retreat
- Exploring religious beliefs through art and music
- Developing a relationship with a mentor
- Service project
- A Wilderness Journey Retreat
- Creating & presenting a faith statement
7th & 8th grade New Neighboring Faiths (Next Offered 2024/2023)
Neighboring Faiths introduces youth in grades 7 & 8 to the faith traditions and practices of other religious groups in their community. Neighboring Faiths provides a number of processes for engaging participants in a religious journey.
Goals for participants:
- To participate personally in the faith traditions of others.
- To reflect on the unique and universal of religious experience.
- To explore their own values as they relate to many other faith traditions.
- To become more aware of the many connections between Unitarian Universalism and other faith traditions.
- To strengthen commitment to Unitarian Universalist faith and community.
- To increase their understanding and appreciation of religious diversity.
- To build relationships with peers, adult leaders, and their congregation and community.
9th – 12th grade High School Youth Group
The Youth Group will meet all Sundays except the first Sunday. The theme based sessions will be filled with creative, high quality worship, games, meditations, reflections, stories, art engagement, discussion starters, etc. Each session is built around our monthly themes to ensure that your youth are part of the wider theme conversation happening all around the congregation.
Our core youth program for high school students provides experiences in community building and fellowship, worship and congregational engagement, social action, UU values, and youth-led sessions exploring the monthly themes and other topics of importance to our youth and their world. Youth and advisors work jointly to plan and participate in social action projects, leadership development, and opportunities for worship.
Youth Group is a wonderful experience for teens – it broadens their perspectives and gives them a comfortable atmosphere in which to discuss the issues they are dealing with, as they become adults.
High school-age UUs put our faith into action every day by daring to be real, showing acceptance and support, leading with courage, and acting for justice.
After all, what is religion for if it isn’t about changing your life—and changing the world—for the better?
You may contact our Director of Religious Education, Steve Cooper, to learn more about any of our youth programs or how to register your child.