Adult Religious Enrichment

Adult RE classes and the Pathways to Membership Series are complemented by ongoing Events and Groups.


A Course in Miracles (ACIM)

The weekly ACIM discussion group continues to have from 5 to 10 people each week reading and discussing the text. Join us at 6 pm on any Tuesday in the Barton classroom. The discussion usually ends by 7:30 pm, and afterwards a few of us meet at a restaurant for further fellowship.

Like everyone else, we are concerned for the future with the political changes that are taking place. However, through the Course, we are reminded that this is all an illusion. As we strive to understand the teachings and to hear the Voice for God, we are taught that, regardless of what is happening around us, we are in the protective custody of a loving and merciful God.

We always welcome new participants and experience and knowledge levels are not important as we are all working together for a better understanding of the Course. If you have any questions, please email acim@aluuc.org.


A Sampler of Adult Religious Enrichment Classes at ALUUC, 2003- Present

A Course in Miracles

The weekly ACIM discussion group continues to have from 5 to 10 people each week reading and discussing the text from the book A Course in Miracles.

We are concerned for the future with the political changes that are taking place. However, through the Course, we are reminded that this is all an illusion. As we strive to understand the teachings and to hear the Voice for God, we are taught that, regardless of what is happening around us, we are in the protective custody of a loving and merciful God.

Experience and knowledge levels are not important as we are all working together for a better understanding of the Course. If you have any questions, please email acim@aluuc.org.

A House for Hope

This series explored liberal theology using “The Promise of Progressive Religion for the Twenty First Century” by John A. Buehrens and Rebecca Ann Parker.

Articulating Your UU Faith

This series explored the Principles & Purposes and the Sources of UUism.

Building Your Own Theology

This series encouraged participants to explore their previous and current theological understandings.

Cakes for the Queen of Heaven/Rise Up & Call Her Name

These two series are a woman honoring adult RE curricula that examine pre-Judeo Christian cultures that may have worshiped the female as divine. The concepts of equality and reverence for the female in a religious setting are eye-opening to many participants.

Conversation Café

This series encouraged participants to meet and discuss spiritual topics.

Couples Enrichment Group

This series offered an opportunity for couples to explore new depths in their relationship.

COSMOS

Participants watched each episode of COSMOS, and then discussed the content.

Defying the Nazis:  The Sharps’ War

This group watched the PBS special of the same name and learned about two American Unitarians who risked everything to rescue Jews during the Holocaust.

Discover Your Spiritual Type

This class explored how each person’s spiritual pilgrimage may be appreciated by using the Myers-Briggs Personality Inventory.

The Enneagram & You

This class explored a different personality inventory, the Enneagram, to reveal the varieties of spiritual expression.

Exploring Paganism

This introductory class offered insights into Pagan spirituality and practices.

Exploring The Book of Genesis

This series explored the narratives and myths of the Book of Genesis.

Lay Officiant Training

This series taught participants how to conduct couple interviews, rehearsals and actual wedding ceremonies.

New to UU

This session covered the components of The Pathway to Membership series in a single session; Pathways replaced it several years ago.

Paganism 101

This series offered an introduction into earth-centered spirituality using the book, Paganism: An Introduction to Earth- Centered Religions by River Higginbotham & Joyce Higginbotham.

Pathways to Membership

This three part series is offered regularly throughout the year and greatly expands upon the “The New To UU” class — it invites prospective members to share their faith journeys, offers insights into the themes & history of UUism, and explores the many opportunities for connection & growth within ALUUC.  Learn more at http://www.aluuc.org/visitor/pathways-to-membership.

 Religion & Cinema

This series explored religion as depicted in such films as The Life of Brian, The Messenger, Barbette’s Feast, City of Angels, etc.

Simple Elegance Cooking & Detective Agency

This group met to celebrate the fellowship of the culinary arts & to create delectable dishes.

The Earth Path

This series used “The Earth Path” by Starhawk to explore the latest insights into modern Paganism.

The Gnostic Scriptures

This series explored many of the Gnostic scriptures, including the “Gospel of Mary Magdalene”.

The Holidays & UU           

This class explored the customs of Yule and Christmas.

The How of Happiness

Participants read and discussed the book “The How of Happiness:  A New Approach to getting the Life You Want” by Sonja Lyubomirsky .

Understanding the Bible: An Introduction for Skeptics, Seekers, and Religious Liberals

Skeptics, seekers, and religious liberals often need a “way in” to understanding the complex territory that is the Bible. John Buehrens’ Understanding the Bible offers just such an entry point. Through the activities suggested in this discussion guide, readers of Buehrens’ book will be able to “claim [their] own power to understand the Bible.”

You do not need to be a theologian or a biblical scholar in order to participate in Understanding the Bible. Combined with the historical and scholarly information that Buehrens provides, the sessions offered more than enough to allow you to engage with biblical texts in new ways. Encouraging the use of both critical thinking and “imaginative compassion” (as Buehrens puts it), the program aimed to enable participants to become responsible interpreters and theologians in their own right. All the while, you are invited to form a “community of seekers and learners,” supporting each other respectfully as they wrestle with the Bible—and having fun in the process.

Oppressive interpretations of the Bible do kill, literally. You’ll find no denial of that here. Massive injustice has been and continues to be done in the name of the Bible . . . . Meanwhile the Bible is also about the beauty and goodness of creation itself; about the ancient human struggle for freedom and liberation; about frustration with violence and injustice throughout the generations; and about experiences of exultation, expectation, and inspiration that can sustain the human quest for wisdom, justice, and peace. If you have any questions, please email intern@aluuc.org.

—JOHN BUEHRENS

UU History I & II

These consecutive series offered an in-depth study of the different pathways of Unitarianism, Universalism and UUism during the past five centuries.

What Moves Us

This series offered participants the opportunity to examine the sources of the liberal faith and how that influences how we live that faith.

Wicca 101

This class explored the teachings and rituals of Wicca.

Writing Your Spiritual Autobiography

This series offered participants the chance to create a journal to explore the many facets of their faith journeys.

Courses focused on Social Justice Issues

Constructive Conversations on Race

This series brought together members of ALUUC and the Calvary Missionary Baptist Church to explore our individual and collective experiences of race and racism in America.  The curriculum used was developed  by Unity Works.

Racial Taboo

This session focused on the film Racial Taboo by Brian Grimm, followed by interfaith and interracial discussion groups.  This effort was coordinated by the Springfield Baha’i community.

Racism & Redemption in the Cinema

This series looked at how the mainstream cinema treats the topic of Racism and offered a stereotypical depiction of how racially diverse individuals create redemption via shared suffering that needs to mutual respect.

The New Jim Crow (UU Common Read)

This group read the book “The New Jim Crow” by Michelle Alexander and watched videos of the author, to understand how systemic racism was implemented in contemporary America.

Sacred Conversations on Race + Action

This series, coordinated by the Faith Coalition for the Common Good, addresses the impact of institutionalized racism within our communities.