Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: A Place of Wholeness: A Program for Youth Exploring Their Own Unitarian Universalist Faith Journeys


In the depths of my soul

There where lies the source of my strength,

Where the divine and the human meet,

There, quiet your mind, quiet, quiet.

Outside let lightning reign,

Horrible darkness frighten the world.

But from the depths of your own soul

From that silence will rise again

God's flower.

Return to yourself,

Rest in yourself,

Live in the depths of your soul

Where the divine and the human meet.

Tune your heart to the eternal

And in the depths of your own soul

Your panting quiets down.

Where the divine and the human meet,

There is your refuge. — Words by Norbert Capek, Czech Unitarian and creator of the Flower Festival, composed in Dresden Prison, 1942

This workshop explores sources, meanings, uses, and expressions of hope. Experiencing the Unitarian Universalist Flower Festival and learning about its Unitarian roots serves as a springboard for the activities in the workshop. Note that what we commonly call the Flower Communion was originally called the Flower Festival or the Flower Celebration by Czech Unitarians. According to the daughter of the ritual's creator (Norbert Capek), her father named it a Festival or Celebration because he did not want to confuse his congregants with the term communion, which had many connotations from the Christian tradition.

Participants reflect on their own sources of hope and how they handle seemingly hopeless personal, societal, and global situations. The alternate activities provide opportunities for deeper spiritual exploration, creativity, and fun. Please note that the Faith in Action activities require extra planning and coordination with congregational leadership in advance of the workshop.


This workshop will:

  • Use Norbert Capek's Flower Festival to demonstrate Unitarian Universalism's theology of hope and belief in the basic goodness of humanity
  • Encourage participants to reflect on current events and what gives them hope in a broken world
  • Explore James Luther Adams' fifth smooth stone of religious liberalism, which focuses on the human and divine resources that justify hope and optimism.

Learning Objectives

Participants will:

  • Understand that hope and optimism are rooted in the Unitarian Universalist tradition and manifest in many ways
  • Learn about and experience the Unitarian Universalist Flower Festival as an expression of hope
  • Reflect on the role of hope in their lives and communities, making connections with current events
  • Identify human and divine capacities that justify hope and optimism, and apply these to their beliefs and actions.