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Leaders (Spirit in Practice)

A team of two or more adults should lead the Spirit in Practice workshops. The same co-leaders need not lead each workshop. However, consistency in leadership has many advantages for congregations providing all or part of the Spirit in Practice program as a continuous series.

Leaders may be religious professionals, such as ministers or religious educators, or they may be committed laypersons. Consider using these criteria in choosing your Spirit in Practice leaders:

  • Knowledgeable about Unitarian Universalism
  • Involved in the congregation
  • Trusted within the congregation
  • Effective at speaking, teaching, and facilitating
  • Engaged in regular spiritual practices
  • Good listeners
  • Responsible and respectful, with strong interpersonal boundaries
  • Well organized and competent

Leaders need to be capable of creating and nurturing a supportive, respectful, and safe community within the workshops. If your congregation has a safe congregation policy, a code of ethics for leaders, or a covenant of right relations, make sure your Spirit in Practice leaders become familiar with and affirm it.

Leaders are expected to be facilitators of learning. As such, their motivations and behavior should be tuned toward the learning needs of participants. Leaders interested in their own gratification or celebrity, or leaders with a theological axe to grind, might present a workshop that is more a "show" about the leaders than a learning experience for and about the participants.

A leader can facilitate learning in these workshops without teaching experience or pedagogical knowledge. Throughout each workshop plan, leaders will find detailed guidance to conduct activities in a way that facilitates participants' learning.

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Last updated on Thursday, October 27, 2011.

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