Last weekend we had two events that highlighted the importance of Faith Development and parent engagement in the lives of our youth. On Sunday, the Young Religious Unitarian Universalist (YRUU) youth group crafted and presented a service on the importance of friendship. They shared how their relationships deepened after the Coming of Age (CoA) trip to the Farm Sanctuary in Ithaca, NY last year. The creativity and thoughtfulness shared by the youth provided inspiration and food for thought.
We are grateful to the youth: Cameron, Ella, Fiona, Nora, Nick and Sydney for sharing their time and talent. And, for modeling what multigenerational worship can be like. A shout out to youth advisors, Langdon Martin, Sarah Hargrove, Steven Reines and Steve Lapointe for their guidance and support.
On Saturday, our Coming of Age group hosted their Trivia Night to raise money for their end-of-year trip. It was a great way for participants to get to know the youth better through the slideshow and touching introductions of each other. The CoA event on Saturday was not only an important fundraiser for the trip, but also a chance for CoA families and youth to build stronger connections as they worked together to host a community-building event for the congregation.
A special thank you to all the parents and youth for a fun and delicious evening. Great work! An updated fundraising report will be available later next week. This congregation’s generosity and support of CoA is greatly appreciated. We thank Brett Johnson for his help in providing the trivia for the evening and Mary Alm for donating her winnings from the 50-50 raffle back to the CoA trip fund (more generosity on display!).
So, where are the CoA youth going this year?One of our parents shared the following information about the trip:
They are participating in a trip offered through the UU College of Social Justice (UUCSJ) and their partner, Southern Appalachian Labor School (SALS). The mission of SALS is to “provide education, research, and linkages for working class and disenfranchised peoples in order to promote understanding, empowerment, and change. SALS is committed to developing a real comprehension of the social, economic, and legal structures which affect the lives of the Appalachian People.’”
We’re excited for our CoA youth to be the first group from UUCA to participate in a UUCSJ program. Their WV program is an immersive learning experience. Our youth will travel deep into Fayette County to have a first-hand experience working and learning alongside community members with diverse perspectives on West Virginia’s past, present, and future. It is a chance to put UU values into action, confronting the environmental, social, and economic injustices that revolve around coal mining. UUCSJ describes this program as immersion learning instead of service because it emphasizes the equal relationships and expertise among all community members and partners. There will be some fun, too, as the youth also explore a beautiful region of WV together!
Our youth are leading the way by providing multigenerational worship that brings all ages together and engaging in justice work. They are supported by their parents, youth advisors, and the congregation in these endeavors. We look forward to hearing about the CoA group’s experiences in the fall. It does take a village to raise engaged UUs!
Faith Development work continues during The Wednesday Thing:
March 25 – The Hidden History of Asheville.
Some of Asheville’s racial history is hidden in plain sight; Patton, Vance, Merrimon, Dickson. Who were the people behind the names? Join local educator, Betsi Conti, in a discussion about how we as a community are affected by who and what we choose to remember. (Middle and High School youth are welcome!)
April 15 – Tech Talk
Join fellow parents in discussing challenges and strategies for handling teen use of technology. Facilitated by Kristi Miller.
Rev. Claudia Jimenez, Minister of Faith Development