Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: Building Bridges: A World Religions Program for 8th-9th Grades

Welcoming and Entering

Materials for Activity

  • Note cards and envelopes
  • Color pens or markers
  • Individuals' names and postal addresses from the faith communities the group engaged

Preparation for Activity

  • Alternate Activity 1, Engagement is a youth-led worship service; if you plan to do this, have the date and details ready for the youth to provide in their notes.
  • If the group will not plan a worship service, talk with your minister, religious educator, and/or Social Justice Committee and identify specific worship services, social justice projects, or other congregational events to which inviting another faith group makes sense. Gather dates and details.
  • Write contact information for yourself, your religious educator, or another adult who can receive other faith communities' "RSVPs" and (optional) text for the note cards. Set these on a welcoming table with the card-writing materials.

Description of Activity

Participants invite members of "engagement" faith communities to visit and to stay connected.

As youth enter, ask them to write invitations to the faith communities they engaged with during Building Bridges. Allow a volunteer to write the text of each card; have everyone sign it. If the youth will conduct a worship service (Alternate Activity 1, Engagement), have them invite the faith communities. If not, have them invite the groups to another worship service or another congregational event suggested by your minister or religious educator. Otherwise, the youth can extend an invitation to visit your congregation for any service. If you do this, ask the guests to let you know in advance when they will come. That way, you will be able to arrange for some youth to sit with peers from another faith community during the service and to host the youth group for refreshments afterward.

Give youth the information they need to write the cards, or show them the sample you have prepared. If everyone will sign their name to a single card, make sure the writers leave room for signatures. Ask several youth to address the envelopes.