Religious Education Trainings
The Pacific Western Region offers a number of trainings for leaders in religious education programs in our congregations throughout the year. These trainings include Our Whole Lives Facilitator Trainings, Renaissance Modules and other trainings for religious education leaders. Youth trainings are listed in our Youth Ministries section.
Our Whole Lives Trainings
Our Whole Lives (OWL) is an excellent, comprehensive sexuality education program that offers our young people the opportunity to explore their values, gain accurate information about topics that are often not easily accessible. The overall goal of the Our Whole Lives program is to help participants gain the knowledge, values, and skills they need to lead sexually healthy, responsible lives. We are proud that our congregations recognize that in order for young people to grow into spiritually whole, mature individuals we need to address the topic of sexuality. The material on Sexuality and Our Faith connects our religious beliefs with sexuality, spirituality, and issues of justice.
The Our Whole Lives teacher training will cover the curricula for one of three age levels - elementary, junior/senior high or young adult/adult. The goals of this workshop are to prepare the participants to implement the curriculum as well as the Sexuality and Our Faith component. Through a varied program including practice and participation activities, the trainers will cover implementation techniques, information about adolescents, curricula details, and technical information. Trainings are typically Friday evening through Sunday afternoon and include 15 hours or more of training time. To be certified as an Our Whole Lives Facilitator, one must attend the entire training.
Upcoming OWL Trainings
OWL Grades K-1 & 4-6
OWL Grades 7-9 & 10-12
- July 20-22, 2018 - UU Congregation of Phoenix - Paradise Valley, AZ
- July 27-29, 2018 - Community Church UCC - Sebastopol, CA
- September 21-23, 2018 - Foothills Unitarian Church - Fort Collins, CO
OWL Level Young Adult & Adult
Don't see a training that works for you? The OWL Training Calendar shows all the trainings across the country. You may also contact PWR's lifespan faith specialist Rev. Sarah Gibb Millspaugh to learn whether any trainings are being planned near you.
Through the Renaissance program, Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) provides education for religious educators in ten areas. Each 15-hour module provides standardized basic training in a specific area useful to religious educators and they may be taken in any order. Renaissance Modules are open to anyone interested in religious education leadership, including ministers, religious education teachers, and lay leaders. Some module topics are being offered in an online format and others are being offered in a hybrid format, with much of the material online and one face to face meeting required at the end of the module. Modules are also offered in the more traditional 2-3 day training at a church or retreat center.
Religious professionals in the Pacific Western Region are welcome to join in Renaissance Modules held online or in other regions. Check out the UUA's national Renaissance Module listing.
Youth Advisor Trainings
Based on the Chrysalis model and new paradigms, the Pacific Western Region Youth Ministry Program offers comprehensive training for religious professionals and adult youth ministry volunteers. Leadership is provided by trained youth and adults. Learning focuses on best practices models related to safety, leadership development, spiritual practice, community building, and intercultural competency.