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

Leader Resource 2: WCUU Script

To the Anchor:

Today's WCUU program talks about a UU scientist's attempt to have life named the greatest wonder of the world. Your job is to follow the script, read your part, and otherwise keep things going. When the broadcast begins, you are alone on camera, sitting or standing in front of a microphone.

[Director: Cue the station break.]

[Director: Cue the Anchor.]

Anchor: This is WCUU, Wisdom of the Community of Unitarian Universalists, on the air.

[Director: Cue the theme music.]

Anchor: Good morning. I am [give your real or stage name] here to report a stunning development in the competition to name the greatest wonder of the world. Here to get us started is our WCUU NUUs Analyst, [give NUUs Analyst's real or stage name].

[Director: Cue NUUs Analyst to stand or sit with Anchor.]

Anchor: Tell us what you know about Dr. UU Scientist's claim that life is the greatest wonder of the world.

NUUs Analyst: Just this: As you know, people around the world have voted for many years on the greatest natural and human-made wonders of the world. Usually they come up with things like Niagara Falls and Cleopatra's Tomb. Now this Dr. UU Scientist appears out of who-knows-where to claim that life is the greatest wonder. That's what I know.

Anchor: That's it? You usually have more to say than that, NUUs Analyst.

NUUs Analyst: Right. But right now I'm more interested in coffee and a donut than I am in talking to you.

Anchor: So go get your coffee and donut, NUUs Analyst, and I'll check back with you at the end of our report. Maybe you'll have more to say then. In the meantime, let's ask Dr. UU Scientist to join us.

[Director: Cue Dr. UU Scientist to change places with NUUs Analyst on camera.]

Anchor: Thanks for joining us, Dr. UU Scientist. Now what can you tell us about life?

Dr. UU Scientist: Thanks right back for having me, Anchor. Now here's what I can tell you about life. It's a wonder, that's what life is.

Dr. UU Scientist The biggest wonder in the world, bigger than Wonder Bread, almost as big a wonder as the universe itself!

Anchor: How so?

Dr. UU Scientist: Think about it! Life goes way, way back, so far back we can't say exactly how far back. It came out of the Big Bang and all the swirling stardust that goes back 14 billion years.

Anchor: And how do you know all that, Dr.?

Dr. UU Scientist: Research. Scientific research. No stories and myths for us. We look for evidence, to test hypotheses, which add up to theories we can prove are true. We dig and dig and dig and then we dig some more in our search for real proof.

Anchor: Are your hands covered with blisters from all that digging?

Dr. UU Scientist: Oh, no. I used to dig all the time, but now I have an assistant to do that. There they are now...

[Director: Cue Science Assistant to begin digging. Cue Camera Operator to focus on Science Assistant. Cue Competitor to join Anchor and Dr. UU Scientist.] Science Assistant: I'm digging for fossils and bones. We're trying to track life back as far as we possibly can.

[Director: Cue Camera Operator to focus on Anchor and Dr. UU Scientist.]

Anchor: Thank you, Science Assistant. And, good luck with that. Now let's meet somebody else, a competitor for the greatest wonder of the world who says it's not life, but rocket ships.

Dr. UU Scientist: I'm ready, let's do it.

Anchor: Good morning, Competitor. Tell us why transportation is such a great wonder.

Competitor: And good morning to you. A rocket ship is not simply transportation, you know. Just think of a rocket ship probing outer space. One of the great creations of all humankind! Once there was no transportation at all. Then there were things like rafts and canoes. Then there were steamboats and trains and cars. Then there were airplanes and now there are rockets! Wow! That's a wonder all right!

Dr. UU Scientist: Easily. People had to create rockets. But people didn't create life. Life evolved all by itself.

Competitor: You've got me there.

[Director: Cue Competitor to leave studio.]

Dr. UU Scientist: Possibly so. We don't know about God. Maybe God made the Big Bang that eventually allowed life to begin. That is a mystery, and we cannot be sure. But we can see the wonder of life, and that is what is most important to me. Knowing lots and lots about life from science does not take away from the wonderful mystery of how it all began.

Anchor: Thank you so much for being with us.

Dr. UU Scientist: My pleasure.

[Director: Cue NUUs Analyst to switch places with Dr. UU Scientist.]

Anchor: Now let's see if NUUs Analyst is done with the coffee and donut. Good morning again, NUUs Analyst. Feel better?

NUUs Analyst: Much. Now what questions have you got for me, Anchor?

Anchor: I am sure the magic of television allowed you to see the show even while you were drinking and eating, NUUs Analyst. So tell us: are Dr. UU Scientist's ideas typical of UU ideas about life, what it is and how it began?

NUUs Analyst: Indeed, clearly, yes. Just look at the UU Sources. One of them is "humanist teachings which counsel us to heed the guidance of reason and the results of science, and warn us against idolatries of the mind and spirit." In other words, science rocks and reason rules. Other UU Sources include ideas of wise people everywhere. UUs honor and enjoy creation myths and stories which give many different ideas about how life began. But most UUs agree that the myths and stories are artistic and poetic ideas about the beginnings. They can help us relish and probe the mystery of creation. But for the facts about how life began some fourteen billion years ago, UUs typically turn to science.

Anchor: Thank you, NUUs Analyst. That is very helpful.

NUUs Analyst: Wait a minute, Anchor. Don't you want to know what kind of donut I had?

Anchor: No I don't. And our viewers don't either. Let's go to theme music!

[Director: Cue the theme music.]

[Director: Cue the station break.]

Anchor: This is [your real or stage name] signing off for WCUU.