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


Activity time: 15 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Chalice, candle, and lighter or LED/battery-operated candle
  • Taking It Home handout
  • Tea light candles for all participants, a small pillar starter candle, and a lighter
  • Optional: Refreshments
  • Optional: Gifts for participants

Preparation for Activity

  • Download, adapt, and copy Taking It Home for all participants.
  • Place the starter candle on a table large enough for each youth to place and light a tea light candle. This table should be next to the chalice.
  • Optional: Write the closing words on newsprint and post.
  • Optional: Make or purchase a gift for each participant. A group photo printed and placed in a simple frame is a nice gift. If you or a friend are artistically inclined, you could create new name tags for participants with artwork made up of symbols from world religions.

Description of Activity

Gather the group around the chalice. Ask the members of the winning team from Activity 1 to help you distribute tea light candles.

Share this quotation from Rev. Mark Morrison-Reed:

The religious community is essential, for alone our vision is too narrow to see all that must be seen. Together, our vision widens and strength is renewed.

Say, in your own words:

We are a religious community. Together, as we explore what it means to live faithful lives, our vision widens to include the perspectives of others. Our strength is renewed as we acknowledge we are not alone as people of faith. As Unitarian Universalists, we also belong to a community of people from all religions who believe there is purpose to our lives and that we must work together to make this world all it can be.

Light the starter candle. Invite each participant and leader, in turn, to place their candle around the chalice and light it using the starter candle. If you gave the group time to write reflections in Activity 4, invite volunteers to read from their reflections. Or, invite everyone to share a feeling about the program in a word or phrase when it is their turn. Passing is also okay. Youth can simply light a candle in silence.

If you have gifts for participants, have the members of the Activity 1 winning team help you distribute them.

Distribute Taking It Home.

Thank the youth for everything they brought to the program. Invite the group to join hands and say together:

All our bridges meet in the middle, in a Unitarian Universalist circle of faith. We are connected with all that lives. We continue with all who seek. We belong with all who love. Go in peace until we meet again.

Extinguish the chalice together.

Enjoy refreshments. Save time for clean-up and ask participants to help you.

Including All Participants

Check food allergies to make sure all can enjoy refreshments. If any youth have severe allergies, invite their parents to help you select appropriate food.