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Activity time: 10 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Chalice, candle, and lighter or an LED/battery-operated candle
  • A chime or a small bell
  • Newsprint, markers, and tape
  • Copies of Singing the Living Tradition, the Unitarian Universalist hymnbook
  • Optional: Talking stick (or another item to pass to each speaker)
  • Optional: Refreshments

Preparation for Activity

  • Place chairs in a circle. Set copies of Singing the Living Tradition on chairs.
  • Set a small center table with chalice and lighter.
  • Write agenda for this workshop on newsprint, and post.
  • Optional: Set out refreshments.

Description of Activity

Welcome people into the circle. Sound the chime and invite participants into quiet reflection as you prepare to enter into a time of centering and sharing.

Ask a volunteer to light the chalice as you share these words:

We light this chalice in the spirit of the possibility that calls us together,

for the commitment to receive and support one another,

and in the hope that we may be challenged and rewarded

in the work we do together today.

Lead Responsive Reading 567 in Singing the Living Tradition, “To Be of Use” by poet Marge Piercy. Invite participants to respond by reading the italicized text while you read the plain text.

Go around the circle, passing the talking stick if you have chosen to use one. Invite participants to say their name and check in by sharing a personal experience that made them feel of use to the world, the broader community, or their circle of family and friends.

After everyone has spoken, ask participants to raise a hand if their “being of use” story involved something for which they were paid. Then introduce the workshop by saying:

While not all useful work is compensated with pay and not all pay is given for useful work, a connection between work and money runs deep in many of our lives. Exploring the work-money connection is one key element of developing a personal theology of money and is the focus of this Wi$dom Path workshop.

Sound the chime to signal the end of the centering time.

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