What to Expect Sunday Morning
Welcome! Please sign in at the Welcome Table in the lobby before service. Children are invited to begin service (11am) in the Sanctuary.
Every Sunday Begins with Time for All Ages
Time For All Ages (TFAA) is a special time when our whole community – children, teens, parents, young adults to elders, RE teachers…everyone! – is together for the beginning of worship in the Sanctuary for an opening, song, and story. We encourage parents to begin bringing children to TFAA at a young age! Children are learning the rhythms, patterns, sights, and sounds of our hymns, traditions, and rituals. Families may enjoy the seating area right up front: large floor pillows create a comfortable space where kids and their parents can really see what’s happening.
After TFAA, children and teachers are sung out to their classes. Kids, look for your peer group and grade sign to walk to class together.
Parents, stay and visit following the service! Classes go until half past the hour so the adults can connect too. Please pick up your child (under 11 years old) from class by 10:30/12:30 or plan a meeting spot for older kids.
Childcare is available for very young children (0-5 years old) during the entire worship service, including TFAA. Please sign them in with the child care staff downstairs in the nursery or Pre-K room either before the worship service or following TFAA.
All children are welcome to attend worship anytime, with their families. Audio from worship is broadcast in Sandburg Hall, across the foyer from the Sanctuary, for anyone more comfortable there.
Several Sundays each year, we have Multigenerational Worship in the Sanctuary with NO RE CLASSES except nursery and preK. Check the RE Calendar for specific dates.
Religious Education Calendar
Volunteer In RE
Register for RE Classes
RE Class Descriptions
Childcare 5 yrs. and under
Child Care is available on most Sunday mornings for children 5 and under. Availability depends on volunteer support.
Nursery care, for children from birth to around two years old, is focused on what faith theorist James Fowler calls the Primal stage: babies and toddlers need to have their emotional needs met first, in the beginning of life. This lays the foundation for trust in the world, and in our church community as a comfortable place. Note: we use texting to contact you if a baby is unhappy for an extended period during the worship service. We will ask that you come down to assist us in understanding and meeting your child’s needs.
PreK-Kindergarten: Chalice Children
Chalice Children delves deep into our Unitarian Universalist faith. It strives not just to teach about our faith, but also to provide experiences around the strength of community, the wonder and awe that transcend everyday understanding, and life issues we all share.
This class sets the stage for loving church. Early childhood (the years between ages 2 and 5) is filled with curiosity and wonder. In a group setting, with caring adult guides, young children can engage in spiritual seeking, develop their openness to sharing, and experience the benefit of a supportive community. Their time in Chalice Children can set a pattern for the rest of their lives and bring lasting benefits.
We start with free play as children get signed in and then we have circle time, followed by a curated story, activity time and more free play. You can often find us on the playground when the weather permits.
Religious Education Classes for K-12th Grade (11:15-12:30)
RE classes for children k-12th grade occur after Time for All Ages in the Sanctuary. Classes are grouped by grade and use curricula noted below.
1st-3rd Grades: Love Will Guide Us
In this program, participants learn to seek guidance in life through the lens of our Unitarian Universalist Sources, with an emphasis on love. Together we ask questions such as, “Where did we come from?” “What is our relationship to the Earth and other creatures?” “How can we respond with love, even in bad situations?” “What happens when you die?” Sessions apply wisdom from our Sources to help participants answer these questions.
Humans learn best through stories told well and via hands-on work. This program presents core “sacred stories” of our own and others’ faiths, inviting children to engage more deeply with those tales through wondering questions and their choice of activity centers with high-quality, carefully curated resources and materials. Spirit Play helps children make meaning of their lives, supporting the formation of a spiritual community of and for children where religious experience comes alive through story, circle, song, and creative work. The essential elements of this Montessori-based approach are equal parts trust in the value of storytelling, and in our children: to choose work they most need to fully understand and engage with the story of the day. Multiple learning styles are supported throughout. Activity centers, depending on who is available to teach on any given Sunday, may include Storytelling, Drama/Movement, Music, Contemplation, Art & MakerSpace Classrooms.
4th-5th Grades: Sing to the Power
Sing to the Power affirms our Unitarian Universalist heritage of confronting “powers and structures of evil with justice, compassion, and the transforming power of love.” Participants experience their own power and understand how it can help them to be leaders.
Each of the 16 sessions uses a tool as a metaphor for an important quality of our faith such as reflection (symbolized by a mirror), flexibility (duct tape), and justice (a flashlight).
What tools does Unitarian Universalism offer for the challenges of life? Children discover what aspects of UU faith are helpful to them, developing a toolbox of faith. Goals: Reflecting on the qualities (tools) of our faith, children and leaders gain insight into what makes our faith important in their lives, and how they can grow in our faith.Your content goes here. Edit or remove this text inline or in the module Content settings. You can also style every aspect of this content in the module Design settings and even apply custom CSS to this text in the module Advanced settings.
6th-8th Grades: Crossing Paths
In Crossing Paths, we will explore various religious traditions through different lenses, which we also call “binoculars” in keeping with our mountaineering metaphor. One of those lenses is how each faith defines “the problem in the world” and “the solution” to that problem. For instance, Buddhism sees the problem in the world as suffering and the solution is Nirvana or enlightenment. Christians see the problem in the world as sin and the solution as salvation. We UUs have our own unique perspective. Put simply, we have tended to see “separation” as the problem and “connection” as the solution. What grabs our attention and breaks our hearts as UUs is seeing how the world separates or disconnects people from their deepest selves, each other, and life’s gifts. (This group involves field trips)
In this year, this class will be supported as they begin to ask big questions. Each of the 16 sessions introduces and processes a Big Question to unpack with a wide range of inquiry, activity and exploration. What is religion? How does it help us make meaning of life? Does God exist? What happens when we die? What does Unitarian Universalism mean to me?
This class invites exploration and engagement on the topic of faith and helps kids begin the lifelong journey of asking questions only they can answer. The theological underpinning is our UU belief that “revelation is not sealed”–we can seek and find answers to big questions. Goals: This program includes goals shared with all Tapestry of Faith programs:Ethical developmentSpiritual developmentUnitarian Universalist identity developmentFaith development.
Riddle and Mystery also aims to:Teach participants to accept, appreciate and celebrate mystery, ambiguity and contradiction as part of human life and the starting points of religionExplore Unitarian Universalist responses to big questionsFoster participants own personal, spiritual responses to big questionsDemonstrate the importance of questioning thought to Unitarian Universalist faith and its value in personal and communal lifeGuide participants to develop and practice the skill of abstract thought.
9th-12th Grades YRUU
Young Religious Unitarian Universalist youth group! Youth lead the way with the help of trusted advisors. Youth will work on service projects, field trips, and their very own worship service.
9th graders can choose to participate in either YRUU or Crossing Paths on Sunday mornings. All children and youth are always welcome to join their families in the sanctuary for the worship service if they prefer that.
Honest, accurate information about sexuality changes lives. It dismantles stereotypes, builds self-acceptance and self-esteem, fosters healthy relationships, improves decision-making, and has the potential to save lives. While OWL is secular, it is not value-free. The program gives clear messages about key issues of self-worth, sexual health, responsibility, justice, and inclusivity. Our Whole Lives curricula are based on the Guidelines for Comprehensive Sexuality Education (http://sexedu.org.tw/guideline.pdf) produced by the National Guidelines Task Force, a group of leading health, education, and sexuality professionals assembled by the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States (SIECUS). This class requires pre-registration, a parent-orientation session before the church year starts and is limited to 12 participants. Once the classes begin, no new members are accepted into the class. Consequently, we offer an alternate class for this age group. For more information, visit https://uuasheville.org/owl-ministry/
Our Summer Sundays (start June 7, 2020) include children from Nursery-5th grades who meet from 10-11:15 AM. Children from kindergarten-5th meet as one large group in the RE Commons space. This includes:
- Welcoming time with rituals, silence, and introduction of the topic
- A guest presenter and activities
- Free play on the playground
Youth in 6th grade and above can volunteer to help with the younger children or attend services with their parents/guardians. If not volunteering in the religious education program, they must be supervised by their parents.
NOTE: This will be updated when the summer programming is decided upon each year.