Jennifer Gates, Youth and Family Ministry Director
Over the next 10 weeks in Youth Ministry, children, teens and volunteers will be learning about and celebrating A Season of Non-Violence. A Season of Non-Violence is an international movement dedicated to demonstrating that nonviolence is a powerful way to heal, transform, and empower our lives and our communities. It is observed annually during the 64-days between the assassination anniversaries of peacemakers Mahatma Gandhi, on January 30 and Martin Luther King, Jr., on April 4. The celebration of a Season of Non-Violence began in 1997 and is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. During this 10-week period, we will be learning about the lives of four peace heroes: Martin Luther King, Jr., Mahatma Gandhi, St. (Mother) Theresa, and Jesus.
This week, our first lesson, based on the quest for peace within ourselves, our families and communities, and the greater world around us, is Dare to Dream. Martin Luther King, Jr., was the undisputed leader of the civil rights movement and showed us all the power of dreaming. In his famous “I Have a Dream” speech, Dr. King told the nation he dreamed of a day when his four little children would “not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” We still find hope and inspiration in his powerful words today. Our lesson this week is about the power of having a dream, and it incorporates Unity Principles:
Principle #3: I create my experience by what I choose to think and what I feel and believe.
Principle #5: Every day I do my best, I give my best, and I make a difference in the world.
We will also be starting something new this week, all age groups will start out together for our Sacred Circle time. And then we will all utilize downstairs space for our breakout sessions for all ages. By starting together each Sunday, this allows several things to happen.
First, latecomers won’t miss out on class time and can easily assemble with us as they come in.
Second, if we have a Sunday with low volunteerism, we can still manage everyone in adjacent spaces.
Third, (which really should be #1), by meeting together and having a short prayer, reciting UCSA Mission & Vision statements, reciting our Family Blessing, etc., we are modeling for the children and teens a portion of what “big church” looks and feels like, and we are aligning our thoughts and vibration with that of the larger CommUNITY.
I invite each of you to join us in our classroom on a Sunday morning. You may just find that your spiritual life is enriched by the lessons we are sharing. And, as always, volunteers for our Youth Ministry team are welcomed with open arms!
Jennifer Gates, MA
Youth Ministry Check In
Please help us remind families that our youth no longer join us in the beginning of the 11:00 a.m. service. Upon arrival, please walk your children and teens over to room 104 and check them in for spiritual classes. *Parents with youth in Pre-K through 8th grade will receive an identification badge that matches the youth name badge. All badges MUST be collected at the end of class to complete the sign-out process.
*High school students must still check in to the system, but do not wear name badges.