Like Leadership Development Conferences, Spirituality Development Conferences (SDCs) are small working conferences for youth and adults. An SDC focuses on ways to design effective, creative and meaningful worship services; and ways to integrate spirituality more deeply into youth programming and the lives of the participants. There are also opportunities for attendees to reflect on what being Unitarian Universalist means to them.
SDCs work to bring youth and adults together to share common worship experiences. Of the Six Pillars of Balanced Youth Ministry (PDF) (worship, youth, adult relations, community building, leadership development, social action & learning), the first, worship, is often overlooked or saved for Youth Sundays.
An SDC can greatly transform the tone and culture of a local youth group and congregation; people return from an SDC inspired to integrate worship more deeply into their program and congregation as a whole. An SDC provides experience and skills for those that are inexperienced in leading/designing worship services. They also give the experienced worship leader an opportunity to grow and stretch through exchanging ideas and inspiration.
Who should attend an SDC?
Youth who want to learn how to create meaningful worship experiences and deepen their own spiritual practice should consider attending this program. Youth who are interested in serving on their congregation's worship committee. Adults in youth ministry who want to support youth in bringing worship and spiritual practice into their youth group should attend. Ministers and Worship Associates who want to ensure that their congregational worship services speak to youth and want to involve youth in their services will also find value in this program.
For SDCs we are especially interested in bringing youth and adults together to worship. We are particularly interested in involving parish ministers with youth through this program.
The recommended ratio of youth to adult participants is 3:1.
Each region handles Chrysalis youth ministry leadership trainings. Contact your regional Congregational Life staff who can provide you with leadership opportunities already scheduled and information on how to host a training.