Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: The Wi$dom Path: An Adult Program on Money, Spirit, and Life

Alternate Activity 1: Consumerism and Our Faith Community

Part of The Wi$dom Path

Activity time: 25 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Newsprint, markers, and tape
  • Fulfillment Curve newsprint from Activity 3

Preparation for Activity

  • Write the following questions on newsprint, and post:
    • Where do you see consumerism or overconsumption affecting our congregational life?
    • Do we talk about consumerism in our congregation? Who leads the conversation? Who is willing to engage in the conversation?
    • If members of our faith community are in different places on the Fulfillment Curve, are those differences acknowledged or talked about in our faith community?
    • What is the impact of consumerism on the next generation? Do adults talk about faithful spending with the congregation’s children and youth? Do children and/or youth raise issues with adults regarding overconsumption? How might we begin to have those conversations?
    • What are some faithful Unitarian Universalist responses to overconsumption?
    • How can we help each other bring our values more in line with our spending and consuming habits?

Description of Activity


Despite the fact that what we most treasure is often intangible, our lives are filled with consumer goods. We live in a society that is highly motivated by consumerism, and our economy is fueled by our consumption of goods and services. The reality is that our lives include not only care and attention to that which we most treasure, tangible and not, but also the purchase and use of a variety of consumer goods that hold varying degrees of value and importance to us.

Invite participants into a large group conversation using some of the guiding questions you have posted on newsprint. Explain that you can only begin what should be a larger and longer-term conversation about these questions.