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Welcoming and Entering, Workshop 21: Cults—Lose Your Will, Lose Your Soul

In "Building Bridges," a Tapestry of Faith program

Materials for Activity

Preparation for Activity

  • Prepare a large sheet of newsprint according to the Poster Guide at the bottom of Leader Resource 1. Post it where it will be accessible to all participants.
  • Print three copies of Leader Resource 1. Keep one copy for yourself, and cut apart the others along the grid lines to separate each item. Fold each slip and place it in a bowl or dish on a table near the newsprint you have posted.

Description of Activity

Participants consider what types of behavior are characteristic of religions or cults.

As participants enter, invite them to take a few slips. Have them read their slips aloud and discuss with the group where on the poster each behavior belongs. Explain that the less cultish a behavior, the higher on the poster it should go: Behavior that is only and always associated with cults goes at the bottom, behavior that could be either or both goes in the hatched area in the middle, and behavior that is only and always associated with religions goes at the top. As the group decides where on the poster each slip belongs, have the youth tape their slips in the appropriate spot.

If the group is unable to reach consensus, a behavior can be placed in two locations on the poster since there are two of each slip.

As more youth arrive, invite them not only to place additional slips but to review and discuss the placement of slips already on the poster.

Ask the group:

  • Is every behavior easy to place?
  • Why did you place the behaviors where you did?
  • Did you always agree on the placement of each slip?
  • If there was disagreement, what did you disagree about?

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Last updated on Wednesday, October 26, 2011.

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