Family Faith Formation Toolkit

Maybe you’ve got an awesome minister (If you’re at UUFC, you do! ☑️), and a caring Religious Exploration team (Lucky you! You’ve got that too!☑️), and excellent friends and family support (I sure hope you do! ?). Did you know that even with all that, parents and grandparents are still a child’s first and most influential spiritual guides? Yes, YOU! You’re the biggest factor in your child’s spiritual growth and development. How cool ? (and maybe scary ?) is that?

In an effort to support families as they raise faithful and spiritually grounded children, we offer you the Family Faith Formation Toolkit with you! On the 4th Sunday of each month, I’ll be adding a new tool to our toolkit below. Each tool will come with resources and practical ideas for how to explore matters of the spirit with your family, and grow in confidence as a spiritual leader. As always, if you have immediate needs relating to your family’s faith formation, I’m available to chat. Just reach out to dre@uucorvallis.org to set up a time.

  1. Discussing the G-word (answering questions about God when you’re not sure yourself)
  2. Prayer as a Family Practice
  3. Meditation with the Kiddos
  4. Service with the Family
  5. Gratitude with the Kiddos
  6. UP NEXT: Building a Family Lectionary

UU Elevator Speech, Online Class (Wednesdays, Sept 27-Oct 11 @5-6PM)

Wednesdays, Sept 27 – Oct 11

5:00pm-6:00pm PST on Zoom

This three-week series guides participants through developing an “elevator speech” about their Unitarian Universalist faith. The next time someone asks you “what is Unitarian Universalism?” you’ll be ready with a brief and meaningful statement.

Because UUFC’s RE department subscribes to the Faith Forward program out of the First Unitarian Church of Dallas, our members are invited to this online workshop for FREE! We will register as a group, so please fill out the REGISTRATION FORM BEFORE September 20th, and I will send them our information. You will receive a link to the online platform Teachable, sometime after September 24th.

Direct questions to Skyla King-Christison at dre@uucorvallis.org 

Spiritual Practices, Part 1 (Mondays, 10/2 to 11/6, 6-7 PM)

Part 1 of the Spiritual Practices Series is a 6-session series that helps participants develop regular disciplines of the spirit – practices that help us connect with the sacred. This series affirms religious diversity while seeking unity in our communal quest for meaning and wholeness. Each session offers a forum for learning, sharing, and growth that can enrich our personal faith journeys.

Join Skyla King-Christison on Monday evenings, Oct. 2nd through Nov. 13th, from 6 to 7pm in Room 7.

Please help us plan by registering here! Thanks!


Session 1: Defining Spiritual Practice

Session 2: Prayer

Session 3: Meditation

Session 4: Mindful Walking and Eating

Session 5: Discernment and Devotional Reading

Session 6: Contemplative Art and Journaling

Part 2 of this series will be offered in the spring, at which time returning participants can share about how their spiritual practices have evolved since part one, and all participants, new and retuning will explore the topics of worship and ritual, discernment and devotional reading, hospitality and belonging, work and service, retreat, and life as a spiritual practice.

Trans Inclusion in Congregations Workshop (Thursdays, 9-21 to 10-26, 6-7:30 PM)

Join us for a 6 week course in culture shift and radical welcome, designed by Rev. Mykal Slack & Zr. Alex Kapitan, and facilitated by Bonnie Morihara.

WHEN: Thursdays from 6 to 7:30pm, September 21st through October 26th.

WHERE: Room 8

WHAT: A video course is designed to watch and discuss together, in an effort to expand our understanding of how to truly welcome folks of all identities into our beloved community.

REGISTER: please help us plan and setup by registering at this link. Thank you!

We offered this warm, challenging workshop over the summer, and at the end, participants said, “This was wonderful! More people need to take this!” If you missed it the first round, we want you to have a second chance.

Ice Cream Social (8-27 at 7 PM)

All are invited to the ice cream social on Sunday, August 27th at 7pm on the Fellowship lawn.

The RE Council will provide the ice cream bars, tabletop games, and a water zone for cooling off. You will provide the general merriment and community building by chatting with someone new, inviting your friends, and bringing your whole, awesome self to the event.

If you’re available to help with set-up, please contact Skyla dre@uucorvallis.org.

August Youth Event (8-27 at 12-6 PM)

It’s that time of year again! Register here by August 20th to attend the Annual River Reunion Youth Float on August 27th from noon to 6PM. All youth in grades 6-12 who planning to attend YRUU in the fall are invited. More details are available at the registration link. Please note, you MUST be registered for YRUU in order to attend. Direct questions to Skyla dre@uucorvallis.org.

PWR Cluster Fall Youth Overnight (Sept. 22-23 at UUFC)

Corvallis is hosting the PWR Cluster’s Fall Youth Overnight! Come get to know youth from the region as we explore the theme of building a new way through touch groups, playshops, worship, and community.

YOUTH EVENTS CALENDAR

Mark your calendars for fun! Bring a friend! All youth in grades 6-12 are invited to join us for our monthly events.

Updates to the calendar will always be posted here. Registration links will be sent to all registered youth 2 weeks in advance of the activity. To receive email updates, please register for YRUU here.

Please contact Director of Religious Exploration, Skyla King-Christison, for more information on this or any other UUFC program for children and youth.

Youth Programs (grades 7-12)

OUR PHILOSOPHY

Our youth programs are designed to prioritize the immediate needs of the youth above the regularly scheduled programming, recognizing that these can be turbulent and fruitful years with a high degree of need for compassionate mentoring and social support.

Our formal programming aims to help participants notice their experiences with the sacred, clarify their own personal values while learning what it means to be Unitarian Universalist, and gain practice expressing their own religious convictions through action towards a better world.

It is our goal that these aims be accomplished through adult/youth partnerships rather than direct teaching, so as capacities develop in our youth for leadership, space is made for a greater portion of our time together to be directed by youth, while adults lean into a mentoring and advisory role.

Check our what to expect in YRUU (Young Religious Unitarian Universalists) below!

HOW TO REGISTER

Before the service, we ask that parents register their children for YRUU. You can do this by visiting the tree stump in the classroom wing and tapping on “YRUU Registration,” or by using this link. Registering helps us create the safest possible learning experience for your child!

While youth are permitted to check themselves in and out of YRUU, we ask that you and your children be aware that we do not permit teens to linger unsupervised in the classroom wing. This provides a layer of safety for both our children and adults, and helps us ensure that our youth are an integrated part of our larger congregational community. Thank you for your support in this area.

WHERE TO GO AND WHEN

Youth should obtain a nametag, just like their parents, either at the welcome desk or from the nametag racks, depending on how long you’ve been attending.

Youth begin with their families in the sanctuary for shared worship. It is important to us that our youth know that they are part of a larger community than just what takes place in the classroom wing. We want them to know and be known by all the members of the Fellowship, and understand their importance and place in our community.

After the time for all ages, the congregation will sing Go Now Children, and a Spirit Play guide with the sign you see to the left will lead the children to the classroom wing. Youth will follow in that general direction and split off to meet their advisors in room 7.

THE EXPERIENCE

When youth arrive in room 7, we will always start with a chalice lighting and brief check-in about how things are going in life, to help get centered in a spirit of community and worship. If appropriate, we move into the lesson for the day. After the session, we’ll have some closing words, extinguish the chalice, and youth are invited to join the wider congregation in the social hall. Light snacks are provided during the session, and donations for the cause of the month are accepted in the social hall after services.

For the 2023/24 Fellowship year, we will be adapting the UUA’s Tapestry of Faith Programming, Heeding the Call: Qualities of a Justicemaker. Each month, the group will explore a different spiritual calling, such as the call to awareness or the call t compassion. These callings will be explored through stories, hands on activities, discussion, and “faith in action” tasks that invite the youth to apply what they’ve learned to the context of our congregation.

in the 2024/25 Fellowship year, we will be using the Harvard Justice Course, an introduction to moral and political philosophy. It explores classical and contemporary theories of justice, and applies these theories to contemporary legal and political controversies. We will be weaving in events and prominent figures in UU history, examining our our religious heritage with a critical eye toward justice.

SPECIAL EVENTS

In an effort to provide more spaced for young UUs to deepen their connections with one another and between communities, we provide a monthly special event for youth. Often, neighboring communities are invited to join, or we travel to them to ensure that our teens are getting experiences beyond our local congregation. You can check out the most current YOUTH EVENTS CALENDAR HERE. Types of events that you can expect include the fall trip to the corn maze, the spring youth coast retreat, and a summer outdoor movie and camping on the lawn. All youth are welcome to join.

Annual Middle School Programming

Every year we offer a special 6 week series of programming specifically for 7th and 8th graders. We alternate between our Coming of Age program and our OWL (Our Whole Lives, comprehensive sexuality education ) program. Both of the programs are central to our UU tradition and community building, and we encourage everyone to take them in the middle school years. These programs are also generally well attended by non Fellowship youth. Space is limited, with priority registration given to member families.

Please send any questions about our children’s and youth programs to Director of Religious Exploration, Skyla King-Christison at dre@uucorvallis.org

Adult RE

This year, our adult religious exploration programs are aimed at helping participants connect with our spiritual center and fine-tune the skills we already possess to help each of us confidently engage with the work of building a new way. We offer programs and events across the year, and we support participants in transforming their skills into learning opportunities for our wider community. Have an offering? Let’s chat!

You can find all of our workshop series, as well as one-time events, in the main Fellowship calendar linked in the “Calendars” tab at the top of this site. We very much appreciate you taking the time to pre-register so that we can arrive well-prepared to provide you with the best RE experience possible.

A few upcoming offerings for adults include:

Spiritual Practices, Part 2

UUA Common Read

Elevator Speeches Workshop

For a sense of our flavor or Religious Exploration for adults, you can check out our past RE event listings here!

Every other year, we alternate between our two core programs that we believe every adult should take at least once. These are the Coming of Age Program and OWL (Our Whole Lives, comprehensive sexuality education) for adults. We are currently in a Coming of Age year. To be added to the mailing list for when we offer OWL again, email Skyla King-Christison at dre@uucorvallis.org.