This Sunday in RE

Dear Beautiful UUI Families,

Today is going to be such a wonderful day at UUI!

  • Jamie's sermon is a challenging look at one era of our Unitarian and Universalist past and why our first principle (the inherent worth and dignity of each person) is so important.

  • Our Preschool class will be reading "The Colors of Us" by Karen Katz and doing a multi-cultural family art project.

  • Our K-5th graders will be doing a Spirit Jam with the 6th UU Principle, "We believe in working for a fair, peaceful, and free world", as the theme. The Spirit Jams we do are workshop-style and child-directed learning so kids can choose which workshops they are interested in doing. This morning they can choose from making dog toys for shelter animals, decorating lunch bags for Meals on Wheels and creating rocks with positive messages for the Kindness Rocks project. Or they can do all three!

  • Our Junior High Youth will be learning about how many different religions deal with the concept of evil. They will also be learning about and making Hamsa symbols, which is an ancient symbol used by many different religions and cultures.

  • Our Senior High Class will be exploring compassion and talking about mirror neurons. They will also be decorating their new mailboxes, making pizzas for lunch, brainstorming sermon ideas to pitch to Jamie, talking about a youth-led service and meeting with Jamie to discuss their ideas.

  • It's Second Sunday which means lunch will be provided for everyone immediately after the service. There will be homemade soups and sandwiches, courtesy of the lovely and talented, Janet Cohen. Vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free options are, as always, available! Activities for all ages happen right after lunch starting at 12:15. Kids and adults can make Valentine's Day crafts. Jamie and I will both be leading workshops (Click here to check out the details!) and child care will be provided for our littlest UU's.

  • 5pm - 8pm we're having OWL (Our Whole Lives) for our 7th - 9th Graders in the Cottage.

I'm looking forward to seeing you!

Peace and Love,

Susanne Hinson-Rieger
Director of Lifespan Religious Education

This Sunday in RE

Dear Beautiful UUI Families,

Did you know we have an RE Council for Children and Youth? We do! The mission statement under which we operate is:

Our mission is to help our children grow into adults who are confident, happy, kind, brave, compassionate, peaceful, spiritually resilient, joyful, loving, accepting and justice-minded, who are critical thinkers, who embrace anti-racism/anti-oppression practices, who are comfortable in their body and with their sexuality, conversant in other religious traditions and have a strong Unitarian Universalist identity.

We reach these goals by providing a safe and loving church home and building a strong community, providing exceptional Sunday programming, special programming such as Our Whole Lives Lifespan Sexuality Curricula, Coming of Age Program, Youth Group, Habitat for Humanity Youth Trip, etc. We support families in their life journey, provide full-week faith opportunities, and teach children and youth how to do church.

One of the things we aim for as the children grow is that they become self-directed in their Sunday gatherings. In Preschool, their volunteers are teachers. In their middle school Coming of Age Program, they are provided with mentors to help them discern their current beliefs. Our goal is that by the time children become senior high youth, teachers have become advisors that help facilitate the ideas of the youth.

We start empowering the children when they are little, in small, age-appropriate ways.

This Sunday for our Preschool, K-2 and 3-5 classes, we will be learning about the 5th UU Principle, "We believe all persons should have a vote about the things that concern them."

In each class, children will be given the opportunity to vote on which story the class reads, which game they play, which activity they engage in. It's going to be a lot of fun!

In our 6th - 8th Grade Class, for our Neighboring Faiths program we will continue learning about Judaism. We will be watching a video, learning about the High Holy Days of Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur. We will be making Resolution Sticks and eating apples and honey.

For our 9th - 12th graders, this week many of our youth are attending a youth CON in Kentucky. Youth who attend church are invited to attend the service or volunteer in the RE Program. Check in at the RE Table in the Social Hall if you would like to help out!

I'm looking forward to seeing you!

Peace and Love,

Susanne Hinson-Rieger
Director of Lifespan Religious Education

This Sunday in RE

Dear Beautiful UUI Families,

Ever since I moved here from Texas, I've found meaning in watching the seasons turn through the windows of the Sanctuary. We really don't seem to get snow here all that often, do we? So not only did I miss you all this past Sunday when everything was cancelled due to weather, I realized I also missed seeing the snow through those windows. I need that spiritual practice to reassure me that in the midst of ageing, illness, scary things that I swear have never happened in the government before, some things remain constant. They happen like clockwork, according to their own time, no matter what else is going on in the world.

As you may know, we are celebrating Chalica at UUI this year and this week in RE we are focusing on and exploring the fourth UU Principle, "a free and responsible search for truth and meaning" or, the kids' version, "We believe that every person must be free to search for what is true and right in life."

Observing Chalica is an excellent way to learn about our Principles, to consider ways to honor and live them in your everyday life, and to celebrate a unique liberal religion of which we are a part, that's helping to make the world a much better place every day! I hope your family will give it a try! Resources are here and you can also google for more ideas and inspiration!

Be sure and stop by the Religious Exploration Table in the Social Hall before or after Service this Sunday! We will have Chalica goodies for you to take home to help you celebrate, including lots of fun chalices to choose from! Even if you haven't started your Chalica celebration, it's not too late to start now!

I'm looking forward to seeing you!

Peace and Love,

Susanne Hinson-Rieger
Director of Lifespan Religious Education

Dear Beautiful UUI Families,

I'm wondering how the first week of Chalica is going for your family?

As you may know, Chalica started last Sunday and so this week we are celebrating and exploring the first UU Principle, "the inherent worth and dignity of every person" or "every person is important".

Last Sunday did you stop by the Religious Exploration table in the Social Hall after the Service and pick up your Chalica gift bag? In it there were materials to make a chalice. If not, there are extra gift bags waiting for you this coming Sunday! Plus, there will be Chalica gift bags with materials for the second week of Chalica, during which we will explore the Second UU Principle, "We believe all people should be treated fairly and kindly."

Observing Chalica is an excellent way to learn about our Principles, to consider ways to honor and live them in your everyday life, and to celebrate a unique liberal religion of which we are a part, that's helping to make the world a much better place every day! I hope your family will give it a try! Resources are here and you can also google for more ideas and inspiration!

This coming Sunday, to kick off the second week of Chalica, our Preschool Class, K-2nd Grade Class and 3rd - 5th Grade Class will all spend time exploring and being inspired by the 2nd Principle. Details about each class are below.

Immediately after the Service, we will have our Second Sunday Program. UUI member, Janet Cohen will cook us a wonderful lunch of soup and sandwiches (vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free options will be available). After lunch, there will be activities for all ages, including Youth Group for 6th - 8th Graders!

It's going to be a great day! See you there!

Peace and Love,

Susanne Hinson-Rieger
Director of Lifespan Religious Education