Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: Miracles: A Multigenerational Program on Living in Awe and Wonder

Activity 3: Story – Joseph Priestley

Part of Miracles

Activity time: 10 minutes

Materials for Activity

Preparation for Activity

  • Read the story and plan how you will tell it to the group.

Description of Activity

This activity explores the serendipitous events leading to the discovery of carbon dioxide.

Introduce Joseph Priestley as a famous Unitarian minister who was also a scientist. Both roles demand close attention and reflection on observations.

This story addresses his process of discovery.

Read the story. Then, invite reactions with these questions:

  • What are your thoughts about serendipity in the story?
  • What most interests you about Joseph Priestley?
  • Have you ever experienced a process of discovery like Priestley’s?
  • Do you think that Priestley’s work as a scientist and his work as a minister go together? Why or why not?