Worship and Preaching: Assessing Sexual Health

Building Block #3

Assessment Questions

Sexuality issues can be addressed from the pulpit and in worship. Most Unitarian Universalist (UU) clergy have preached on some sexuality issues, especially about gay and lesbian issues and marriage equality. Many UU clergy have participated with the Religious Institute in our Rachel and Congo Sabbath Initiatives. However, many congregations miss the opportunity to regularly integrate these issues into worship, and few have ever addressed such issues as sexual abuse prevention, sexuality education, or reproductive justice. Preaching and worship about sexuality issues can help congregants understand the relationship of sexuality and spirituality; that sexuality can be discussed in a respectful and serious manner; and that the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) has a prophetic voice on sexuality issues. Further, addressing sexuality issues during worship and sermons demonstrates that clergy are comfortable talking about sexuality issues and therefore open to addressing these issues in pastoral care as well.

To be completed by:

  • Congregation Minister(s)
  • Director of Religious Education
  • Worship Committee of the Congregation

Worship and Preaching: Assessment Checklist

Suggested Readings

  • A Time for Every Purpose, Religious Institute, 2009, has Responsive Readings on the following topics: Sex Education, Abortion as a Moral Decision, Adolescent Sexuality, Assisted Reproductive Technologies, Marriage Equality, and Sexual and Gender Diversity
  • The Erotic Word: Sexuality, Spirituality, and the Bible, by David Carr, Oxford University Press, 2003.
  • The Sins of Scripture: Exposing the Bible's Texts of Hate to Reveal the Love of God, by John Spong, HarperCollins, 2005
  • When Bodies and Souls Entwine, A hymn written for the 10th Anniversary of the Religious Institute

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