Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: Riddle and Mystery: A Program on the Big Questions for Grade 6


This is my living faith, an active faith, a faith of verbs: to question, explore, experiment, experience, walk, run, dance, play, eat, love, learn, dare, taste, touch, smell, listen, argue, speak, write, read, draw, provoke, emote, scream, sin, repent, cry, kneel, pray, bow, rise, stand, look, laugh, cajole, create, confront, confound, walk back, walk forward, circle, hide, and seek. — Terry Tempest Williams

Big Question: What are we?

Understanding and describing their religion can be a challenge for young Unitarian Universalists. Activities center on exploring Paul Gauguin's second big question—"What are we?"—and offer participants "Unitarian Universalists" as one answer. The session delves further with a second question: "What is Unitarian Universalism?" Religions exist, the session says, in part to help people join together in a search for answers to big questions. Children investigate the words "religion," "faith" and "spirituality" and learn how each relates to Unitarian Universalism.

Note: The Faith in Action activity suggests inviting a guest to speak about your congregation's social action activities.


This session will:

  • Pose the Big Question "What are we?" and explore Unitarian Universalist responses to it
  • Offer a brief "recess speech" for describing Unitarian Universalism
  • Posit that there are "answering" religions and congregations and "questioning" religions and congregations, and examine where Unitarian Universalism fits
  • Present a brief introduction to the Unitarian Universalist Principles and Sources
  • Offer brief explanations of faith, religion and spirituality and how they relate to one another and Unitarian Universalism
  • Explore the meaning of faith in action.

Learning Objectives

Participants will:

  • Identify "Unitarian Universalist" as one identity they may hold
  • Learn one way to describe their religion to friends
  • Appreciate Unitarian Universalism as a religion where questioning is valued
  • Understand how the Principles and Sources can help them explore their own answers to big questions
  • Explore the meaning of and relationships among faith, religion, spirituality and faith in action
  • Discover that Unitarian Universalism is a religion of action as well as belief and thought.