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Closing (10 minutes), Workshop 10: Looking Back and Moving Forward

In "Spirit in Practice," a Tapestry of Faith program

Materials for Activity

  • Altar or centering table
  • Cloth for covering altar or centering table
  • Chalice and candle
  • Chalice extinguisher
  • Copies of the customized Taking It Home handout (see Preparation)
  • 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

  • Review the Taking It Home section for this workshop and decide whether you wish to add any other resources. Check the links to websites to make sure they are still accurate.
  • Download the Taking It Home section to your computer, customize it for your group, and make a printout or photocopy for each participant.
  • Place copies of Singing the Living Tradition on or next to participants' chairs.
  • Arrange for musical accompaniment if you believe it will be necessary for singing "Go Now in Peace."

Description of Activity

Gather participants around the altar or centering table. Affirm the good work that participants have done in this workshop series.

Distribute and explain your customized Taking It Home handout. Review the suggested resources for continuing to explore spiritual practices on one's own or with friends and family.

Close the workshop with this ritual: The leader takes the hand of the person on his/her right while saying, "I put my hand in yours so that we might do together what we cannot do alone." That person, still holding the leader's hand, then takes the hand of the person on his/her right, saying the same thing. When this saying has gone completely around the circle and everyone is holding hands, the workshop has ended.

As a benediction, offer the song "Go Now in Peace," 413 in Singing the Living Tradition. Your group may have the song memorized, especially if your congregation has a tradition of singing this song to the children during worship services. Ask participants to consider the lyrics to the song and to sing them to one another as a blessing for the journey home.

Extinguish the chalice.

Including All Participants

Using a microphone for this activity helps more people hear you.

Be sure to be inclusive of people with a variety of living situations—living alone, with a significant other, in a family, with housemates, etc.—in the way you explain the Taking It Home activities.

You may wish to adapt the closing ritual to make it more comfortable for people who are averse to holding hands. You can change the words to "I reach out to you so that we might do together what we cannot do alone" and change the accompanying gesture to reaching rather than holding hands.

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.

For more information contact web @ uua.org.

This work is made possible by the generosity of individual donors and congregations. Please consider making a donation today.

Last updated on Saturday, October 29, 2011.

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