Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: What Moves Us: A Unitarian Universalist Theology Program for Adults

Leader Resource 5: Adams Theology in the Congregation

Part of What Moves Us

This is a 30-minute activity.


  • Newsprint, markers, and tape


  • Prepare and post a sheet of newsprint with these questions:

    • Does our congregation encourage individuals to have a change of heart and a change of behavior that might be called a kind of conversion experience?
    • What elements of congregational life nurture individuals and encourage such an experience? Do these elements need to be strengthened?
    • What are some of the ways in which participation in your Unitarian Universalist congregation has changed your behavior and your engagement in the community and the world?


Invite participants to consider:

James Luther Adams called his experience in Germany "a kind of conversion." Adams encountered a situation which caused him to rethink the commitments required by his own faith and to plunge himself into the activities of voluntary associations that worked for justice.

Invite participants to form groups of four to respond to the questions you have posted. Allow fifteen minutes for groups to discuss. Then, invite all to rejoin the larger group and share observations and responses.