We need not think alike to love alike. — Francis David
To different minds, the same world is a hell, and a heaven. — Joseph Priestley
IN TODAY'S SESSION...
We explored diversity of faith heritage and religious belief as a desirable and welcome feature of a Unitarian Universalist congregation. The activities helped children practice active affirmation of each individual's faith heritage and personal religious beliefs. The children learned that when we affirm each other's meaningful faith traditions and their theological questions and beliefs, we affirm each other as individual truth-seekers (our fourth Principle) and show that we accept every individual and encourage their spiritual growth (third Principle). The session introduced the six Sources that support and nurture Unitarian Universalist faith. Children will explore how the Sources embrace a variety of faith traditions, including Unitarian Universalism itself. A story about Thomas Starr King illustrates that to follow one's own faith path is not only allowed but a core value in Unitarian Universalism.
Children learned symbols of Unitarian Universalism and several other major faiths. Some children used these symbols to represent their faith heritage in an art activity.
EXPLORE THE TOPIC TOGETHER. Talk about...
Ask your child what they shared about their faith heritage today. Ask if they learned anything surprising about themselves when it was time to think about what they believe about God or another religious topic. Were they surprised by anything a peer contributed? If your child learned that a friend holds a different belief or comes from a faith tradition that is different from yours, ask how it felt to discover this difference. Ask them what they think about the religious diversity around them and the ways this diversity is celebrated in your congregation and/or your home.
Share your thoughts on religious diversity, inside and outside your congregation. Share your feelings about freedom of religious belief.
EXTEND THE TOPIC TOGETHER. Try...
A FAMILY ADVENTURE
Do you have friends whose religious beliefs differ from yours and are comfortable articulating their faith choices? Arrange for your family to join them for a religious service or celebration and some conversation about their beliefs. Bring along a copy of the Unitarian Universalist Sources and find out which Sources, if any, resonate religiously for your friends.
Discuss the theological diversity within your family. Sketch your family's faith heritage "family tree" and discuss the faith journey(s) that led you to your Unitarian Universalist community.