Building the World We Dream About: A Welcoming Congregation Curriculum on Race and Ethnicity

Building the World We Dream About is a Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) Tapestry of Faith curriculum designed to foster cross-cultural skill building and prepare participants to nurture a multiculturally competent and actively anti-racist congregation. The goals of the curriculum are to:

  • Promote multicultural welcome, inclusion, and affirmation in all facets of Unitarian Universalist congregational life
  • Cultivate participants’ knowledge and skills in addressing issues related to race, ethnicity, and cultural identity both individually and institutionally
  • Identify ways congregations can build multiracial/multicultural communities of love and justice.
  • Transform how participants see their individual selves, their congregation, their community, and our world through the lens of race and ethnicity.

Through a series of interactive seminars, participants explore topics that increase their understanding of race/ethnicity and systemic racism, through spiritual reflection, journaling, visual arts, poetry, music, theater tools, simulations, guest speakers, and field trips. The curriculum culminates with worship and creation of action plans for anti-racist, multicultural congregational transformation.

Bring the Program to Your Congregation

Go to the Building the World We Dream About access page to view the program online and/or download it in its entirety.

You can also download a double-sided flyer (PDF) that addresses common questions about the program.

If you're considering facilitating the program, check out the UUA's facilitation tips for conversations about identity and oppression.

Young Adult Version

In 2012 the UUA developed and released a version of Building the World We Dream About specifically tailored to a young adult audience (ages 18-35), taking into account the generational experiences and unique needs of these participants. Visit the access page for the young adult version of this program to learn more or download the program.


Building the World We Dream About was born in response to the desire expressed by UU congregations, districts, and affiliate groups for a "Welcoming Congregation type program" focused on race and ethnicity. In February 2004, representatives of stakeholder groups met in Boston to articulate a vision, identify challenges, and strategize about tools to help congregations become more welcoming, inclusive, and affirming of persons of diverse races, cultures, and ethnicities.

A Project Advisory Group comprised of religious professionals, lay leaders, and UUA staff guided the development of the program. After field testing with forty-five congregations the program was released in 2010.

The program's author is Mark Hicks, Angus MacLean Professor of Religious Education at Meadville Lombard Theological School, George Mason University professor of transformational education, and UUA anti-oppression consultant.