Tapestry of Faith: Faith Like a River: A Program on Unitarian Universalist History for Adults
Main Content

Activity 3: Interplay of Theology and Institution

Activity time: 20 minutes

Materials for Activity

Preparation for Activity

  • Print out Leader Resource 3, Theology and Institution and become familiar with its contents.
  • Write the word "THEOLOGY" on one sheet of newsprint and "INSTITUTION" on another. Post the two sheets on opposite sides of the room.
  • Prepare a sheet of newsprint with these questions:
    • Did the group described intend to reform theology or reform an institution?
    • Which, if any, did they actually change?

Description of Activity

Post the newsprint with the two questions. Read or present in your own words the contents of Leader Resource 3, Theology and Institution, stopping at the first marked point.

Invite participants to consider the first posted question. Then, lead them to answer the second.

After the second question, invite participants to move to one side or the other to indicate whether they believe the primary change effected was in the institution or in theology. Invite a few people to share why they think the actual change was more in the institution or in the theology.

Allow four minutes of conversation. Then, move on to the second section of Leader Resource 3, Theology and Institution, again asking participants to move to one side or the other depending on whether they believe the primary change effected was in the institution or in theology. Allow another four minutes for responses and conversation.

Move on to the third section in Leader Resource 3, Theology and Institution and repeat the process.

Including All Participants

If any participants may be unable to move easily from one end of the room to the other, do not post "THEOLOGY" and "INSTITUTION" signs; instead, invite participants to choose one answer or the other by a show of hands.