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Activity time: 5 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Altar or centering table
  • Cloth for covering altar or centering table
  • Chalice and candle
  • Matches or lighter
  • Copies of Singing the Living Tradition, the UUA hymnbook (one per person)
  • Optional: A piano, guitar, or other form of accompaniment
  • Optional: Microphone

Preparation for Activity

  • Arrange for musical accompaniment if you believe it will be necessary for singing "Just as Long as I Have Breath."
  • Set up the altar or centering table with the cloth, chalice, candle, and matches or a lighter.
  • Place copies of Singing the Living Tradition on or next to participants' chairs.

Description of Activity

Welcome participants to Spirit in Practice.

Ask the group to turn to "The End Is Where We Start From" by T. S. Eliot, 685 in Singing the Living Tradition. You may wish to share with participants that T. S. Eliot was a Nobel Prize-winning poet, dramatist, and literary critic. Although Eliot converted to the Anglican faith as an adult, he came from a family of prominent Unitarians, including several ministers. Invite a participant to light the chalice as the group reads.

After the reading, ask the group to turn to "Just as Long as I Have Breath," 6 in Singing the Living Tradition. Invite the group to join in singing. If the group is largely unfamiliar with the song, you may need to teach them the tune.

Including All Participants

If your congregation has large-print and/or Braille versions of Singing the Living Tradition, make those copies available for participants who might need them. Using a microphone for this activity helps more people hear you.

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For more information contact religiouseducation@uua.org.

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