Activity 1: Story - We Are Each Other's Business

Activity time: 15 minutes

Materials for Activity

Preparation for Activity

  • Read the story and prepare to present it effectively.
  • Optional: Copy the story for all participants.
  • Optional: If you would like to play streaming audio of the author, Eboo Patel, reading "We Are Each Other's Business" aloud, find the clip on the National Public Radio website and prepare and test a computer with Internet access and speakers before the session begins.

Description of Activity

Participants explore issues of religious bigotry and their own responsibility through the story of Eboo Patel, founder of the Interfaith Youth Core.

Tell or read the story. Or, distribute copies to participants and have volunteers read aloud, taking turns at each sentence or paragraph. Remind the group that anyone has the right to pass. Or, if you have set up the audio stream, play the clip of Eboo Patel reading the selection.

Then, lead a short discussion using these questions:

  • Has an incident like this ever happened at your school? What did you (or others) do about it?
  • What are some things Eboo and his friends could have done to stick up for their Jewish friend? What abilities would they need to do those things?
  • Why do you think it was hard for Eboo and his friends to do the right thing?
  • Have you ever been targeted at school? What do you wish your friends had done?
  • What does it mean to you when he says, "Action is what separates a belief from an opinion?" Do you agree or disagree? Why?
  • Eboo quotes the Quran to show his religion's support for the engagement of diversity. What from your own tradition or beliefs supports you in exploring diversity and standing up against bigotry? (Youth may name UU Principles. Be ready to remind them, also, of the stories you have shared in previous workshops about Unitarian Universalists whose words or actions have imparted a tradition to us.)

For more information contact religiouseducation@uua.org.

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