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What's New: Religious Education and Faith Development

Including People with Special Needs. The Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) has a new web page rich with resources for full, meaningful inclusion of people with special needs in religious education and other aspects of Unitarian Universalist (UU) congregational life. Find links to blogs, books, and organizations for inspiration and guidance.

The new Common Read is... Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson. This compelling book advocates for poor people, people of color, children, and women trapped in the U.S. criminal justice system. A discussion guide will be available in October for UU groups to read, reflect, and respond in the 2015-16 congregational year.

Meet LREDA in August! Credentialed Religious Educators Robin Pugh and Michelle McKenzie-Creech will present a webinar on behalf of the Liberal Religious Educators Association (LREDA) on Tuesday, August 18 (1 pm Eastern) and Wednesday, August 19 (9 pm Eastern). Whether you are new to religious education leadership or have deep experience, join to share resources and encouragement for peer and professional support. Register for a webinar now!

A Fahs classic is now online. The second edition (1995) of From Long Ago and Many Lands shares stories from world religions through Sophia Lyon Fahs' Unitarian Universalist lens. Download as a PDF file (288 pages).

Connecting all ages in worship, learning, justice work, and more appeals to many of us. But, how to do it? The UUA website now provides Multigenerational Ministry web pages with stories, resources, and inspiration to support our faith communities. Start exploring! To share multigenerational success stories or photos from your congregation, contact multigen [at] uua [dot] org.

A youth/adult conversation about Selma can make a movie night meaningful. Use the youth-friendly discussion guide (PDF) from the UUA for a one-hour workshop, with extension activities if you have more time. Also, "Selma, 1965!" was in the Spring 2015 UU WorldFamilies pages (PDF) theme. Experience the 1960s Civil Rights Movement through the eyes of a child who lived it. Find ideas and activities to engage families in fighting persistent, institutional racism.

Miracles! The newest Tapestry of Faith multigenerational curriculum offers eight sessions of engagement--much of it hands-on and/or outdoors--with wonder and awe AND science, together. The program is available free, online to browse and implement. Ideal for a wide age span of children. Could you field test two or more sessions? Please contact fieldtest [at] uua [dot] org

In theme-based ministry, leaders of worship, religious education, social justice, music, and other programming coordinate their conceptual planning so that all ages and stages in the congregation can experience their faith together. Theme-based ministry pages on the UUA website provide congregational testimonials, planning tools, worship resources, and more for your congregation's planners and leaders of worship, religious education, social justice, music, and other programming.

On Demand! Archived webinars! Recent topics include: cultural competence with disability (July, 2015) and an update on sexuality education programs: Our Whole Lives revisions and a new parent program (June, 2015). Archives include one-hour, recorded webinars and accompanying resources, such as Power Point slides.

Chalice Children, the UU preschool curriculum introduced by Katie Covey in 1998, is updated and published online for congregations to use at no charge. Thirty-seven one-hour sessions are presented in four thematic units and one unit of holidays. See the document in the new, two-column format.

A discussion guide (PDF) to the Skinner House book by Susan Ritchie, Children of the Same God, helps Unitarian Universalist (UU) groups explore our religious roots in Christianity, Judaism, and Islam.

Does—or could—your congregation do military ministry? The one-hour recording of the November 2014 FDO webinar demonstrates why and how your congregation might welcome servicepeople, veterans, families, and others involved with the military. The Military Ministry Toolkit for Congregations has video clips and a workshop guide to get you started. A recent Beacon Press "UU Reads" selection was Soul Repair: Recovery from Moral Injury After War (Beacon, 2012); download a study guide for congregations (PDF).

Virtual gatherings for UUs of Color are convened monthly, online, by Jessica York, UUA Faith Development Director, and emerging lay leaders. Adults, young adults, and youth of Color are invited to create community within our faith. Email youthprograms [at] uua [dot] org for more information.

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