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Alternate Activity 1: Leadership in Action - Telling a Story in Worship

Alternate Activity 1: Leadership in Action - Telling a Story in Worship
Alternate Activity 1: Leadership in Action - Telling a Story in Worship

Activity time: 0 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • A story to share with the congregation
  • Costumes, props, music and a music player

Preparation for Activity

  • Coordinate the worship date, rehearsal date(s), and the choice of story with worship leaders.
  • Research possible stories. A story in this program might work. Browse many other stories from all the Unitarian Universalist Sources in the Tapestry of Faith story database. Make sure you can find out the cultural origin of the story.

Description of Activity

Participants demonstrate respectful cultural sharing of stories during worship.

Invite the children to tell a story from a cultural different from that of most congregants. If possible, allow the children to choose a story from several you have selected.

Help children write an introduction that includes these elements of cultural sharing:

  • The origin of the story
  • An acknowledgement that the story has wisdom for us, even though it may not come from our culture
  • An acknowledgement that the story may not mean the same thing to us as it would to the people to whom it belongs
  • Thanks to the originators of the story for sharing it

For example, if you were to share "Oshun Loses Her Beauty," you might say:

This story comes to us from West Africa. The gods in the story are called Orisha. They are part of the Santeria religion. Though this religion is different from our UU religion and it may mean something different to the people of West Africa or other practitioners of Santeria, it has wisdom to share with us. We thank them for sharing the story with us.

Rehearse the introduction and the storytelling. Include as many props, costumes, and sound effects as you can to make the story interesting. If there are ways to make it interactive and include congregants, do so.

After the worship service, ask participants what they enjoyed about the experience of sharing the story. Ask:

  • What would you do differently next time?
  • Do you feel we shared the story in a respectful manner?

For more information contact religiouseducation@uua.org.

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