Special training is not required to lead Amazing Grace. The curriculum is a complete program with more activities and ideas than most groups will be able to use, and with complete and practical suggestions for presenting them. Any lay or professional religious education leaders with the required time and energy may readily present it. Amazing Grace has a format that makes materials accessible and leadership easy, but supplies still must be gathered, arrangements must be made, and plans must be internalized. We fully recommend co-leadership, with at least two committed adults heading up the program and sharing both burden and joy. In many Unitarian Universalist congregations, that will be a given anyway, because those congregations require that at least two adults be present in all programs involving children and youth.
Experience leading youth programs is, of course, a plus. Anybody lacking that and hoping to acquire some by leading Amazing Grace is well advised to team up with somebody who has headed similar programs before. Experience may be the best teacher, but we all have to start somewhere. One place to do that is in the how-to literature, and most directors of religious education will be able to help new leaders find appropriate printed and Internet resources.
If you are starting up on your own and looking for a co-leader, what characteristics should you seek? Being able to plan tight and present loose (see Leader Guidelines) is important. Comfort working with youth is essential. Experience with the Internet is helpful. Compatibility between you and other leaders is significant. A comfort level and familiarity with religious language is important. A sense of humor can add a lot. The list could go on, but much of it is obvious. Most of all, look for somebody with enthusiasm and commitment plus the time and energy required for the job.
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Last updated on Wednesday, October 26, 2011.
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