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UUSGU Religious Exploration Newsletter May 1, 2023

Our themes for May are transformation and creativity. What are some creative things your family likes to do? In the image at left, the artist has used his photography and digital collaging talents to transform a photo of an urban basketball net into an ethereal and lovely nature image by overlaying spring and fall leaves on the original photo. (Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash ).

In May, we will be exploring how joy can transform our outlook and creating joyful artwork. We’ll learn about some moms who have made contributions that transformed the world. We’ll see how a simple cup of tea can turn a roomful of strangers into a community, and work with one another to make our meeting house a nicer place for all to be in. Join us this month as we jump into the waters of transformation.

Upcoming RE and Family Events at UUSGU

May 3rd--DRE’s Online Office Hour 6 p.m. Zoom Link

May 7th--Buddha’s Birthday Service, 10 a.m.

--RE classes, childcare available

May 14th--Mother’s Day Service, 10 a.m.

--RE classes, childcare available

May 21st--Multigen Service, 10 a.m. no RE classes

--childcare available

--Blue Jean Sunday, 11:30 a.m.

May 28th--Memorial Day Service, 10 a.m.

--RE classes, childcare available

Coming up Next Program Year…

In the upcoming program year, I’d like to offer a Coming of Age program to youth in grades 8 and up who have not had the opportunity to participate in one. I’m told that CoA has not traditionally been a part of Religious Exploration at UUSGU, but I would like us to begin to offer it.

Here are some common questions families might have about CoA.

What is Coming of Age?

--Coming of Age is a program for teens that is designed to help them explore their feelings about themselves and about their beliefs. It culminates in them writing a personal statement (credo) to share with the congregation at a service led by the youth. Along the way they explore questions like, “What is religion?” and “Is religion the same as faith?” and “How can my life reflect my values?”

How is Coming of Age different from Bridging?

--While Bridging is a ritual commemorating the passage of a youth from the home nest of the congregation to the wider adult world, CoA signifies that a teen is of the age where they are now ready to be an active participant in forming their personal theology.

What would a Coming of Age program look like?

--The program consists of 12-16 sessions spread over the course of our church program year. These would most likely be scheduled on non-Youth Group Sundays, starting after Service and Fellowship. Some sessions would be for just the teens, others would include the whole family and mentoring adults. In the spring there would be a special service planned and run by the teens and their mentors and families.

Do we have enough students for this?

--I’m a firm believer that if we insist on waiting around for there to be some arbitrary ‘enough’, we will never reach that point and our youth will never have the opportunity to participate. I will be contacting other UU churches in the adjoining towns to see if there is interest in a joint program.

If you have further questions, or would like to preview the curriculum I have in mind to use, drop me an email at

Wanted: Exploration Leaders

Would you be willing to spend one Sunday morning a month helping our students explore their beliefs and values? How about one Sunday every other month? Or maybe even just one Sunday?

In the upcoming program year I would like to invite all adults to take a turn in leading Religious Exploration classes for our 3rd through 6th graders. Our curriculum for next year will allow you to teach as few or as many class sessions as you’d like--each session is a self contained unit and all materials will be provided.

Wanted: A used DVD player to use with the CartUUns curriculum

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