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Opening (5 minutes), Session 5: Unitarian Universalism

In "Amazing Grace," a Tapestry of Faith program

Materials for Activity

  • Conundrum Corner poster/banner
  • Leader Resource 1, UU Cars
  • Sign on newsprint asking, "Which of these are UU cars?"
  • Chalice and matches
  • Recording of "Amazing Grace" and music player
  • Optional: Newsprint, markers and tape
  • Optional: Nametags and markers
  • Optional: Decorative cloth for Conundrum Corner

Preparation for Activity

  • Photocopy Leader Resource 1, UU Cars, in color, if possible. Place the photograph and newsprint sign on display in the Conundrum Corner.
  • Optional: Prepare and post an agenda of the day's activities.
  • Write chalice-lighting words on newsprint, and post.
  • Optional: Decide if you will continue to play "Amazing Grace" at Opening and Closing. Feel free to take a break from it if you feel the routine is getting old. You could also vary the practice by playing different versions. If you decide to continue, have your recording ready to play.

 

Description of Activity

As participants enter, greet them. If you have newcomers, greet them warmly and be sure they know others in the room. Give them nametags if others have them. Ask newcomers and old timers alike to look at the Conundrum Corner, but do not say anything more about it. In answer to any questions about it, say you will be talking about it later.

If you are playing "Amazing Grace," stop the music or reduce the volume to a very low background level.

Lead the group in the day's opening rituals—a chalice lighting, a moment of focusing silence, and a moment of sharing.

Light the chalice, or let a youth do so, and speak these words (asking the group to join you if you have posted them):

May this light help us to see who we truly are.

Ask the group to be silent for a moment as they reflect on the opening words and settle in for the session. End the silence by saying, "blessed be," or other appropriate words.

Ask the youth how often they talk with their non-UU friends about their UU religion. Say that some people believe religion and politics are subjects that people should not talk about because discussions about them often result in strong disagreement. Others believe that reasonable people should be able to talk about the things that matter most to them, even if they have different ideas. Announce that this session of Amazing Grace: Exploring Right and Wrong gives some ideas about what UUs might want to say about their religion to other people.

Extinguish the chalice without ceremony and move the chalice table aside as necessary to allow movement in the room.

For more information contact web @ uua.org.

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Last updated on Wednesday, October 26, 2011.

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