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Children's Faith Development

Tapestry of Faith

  • The Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) provides comprehensive, adaptable, and searchable children's curricula online, for congregations to use at no charge. Each Tapestry of Faith program has stories, activities, and social action ideas to nurture children in ethics, spirit, faith, and Unitarian Universalist (UU) identity, and Taking It Home and Find Out More sections to extend learning. Families can go online from home to explore the ideas and activities the children experience in their religious education program.
  • Children's faith development resources in the Tapestry of Faith family include online chapter books on using art and music with children; the Toolkit Books Nurturing Children and Youth: A Developmental Guidebook, by Tracey L. Hurd and Stories in Faith: Exploring Our UU Principles and Sources Through Wisdom Tales by Gail Forsyth-Vail (available from the UUA Bookstore); and the Family Pages color insert in every issue of UU World magazine. Explore all Tapestry of Faith resources online.

On Children's Faith Development

  • Full Circle: Fifteen Ways to Grow Lifelong UUs, by religious educator and lifelong UU Kate Tweedie Covey, reports on her interviews with 82 men and women ages 25 to 87 who were raised as UUs. She identifies 15 common threads as critical to their commitment to the faith. A heads-up to congregations who want to meet the needs of their children and youth with a faith they can keep.
  • The Gift of Faith: Tending the Spiritual Lives of Children, by Jeanne Harrison Nieuwejaar, shows that religious community is vital to addressing a child’s natural need for spiritual growth and religious grounding. It points to the crucial role of parents as their children's primary religious educators and explores ways to foster spiritual life in the home. An accessible, inspiring book.

Welcoming Children in Our UU Congregations

  • Come Into the Circle: Worshiping With Children by Michelle Richards (Skinner House) offers readings, song suggestions, and ways to worship with children in your congregation.
  • A Child's Book of Blessings and Prayers, collected and introduced by Eliza Blanchard, draws material from around the world to encourage giving, service, and gratitude. It includes words to bless the morning, share at bedtime, honor a birthday, even give thanks for a friend.
  • Welcoming Children with Special Needs: A Guidebook for Faith Communities, by Sally Patton, advocates and offers specific ideas for congregations to welcome and meaningfully engage children with special needs and to support their families.
  • What If Nobody Forgave? collected and edited by Colleen M. McDonald brings the seven UU Principles to life in 19 tales with basic messages about truth and right living. Buddha, Jesus, and the Sufi masters of Islam are among the spiritual teachers represented. Each story provides discussion questions, activities and a reading list.
  • A Lamp in Every Corner, by Janeen K. Grohsmeyer brings UU-inspired stories to children, including stories about historical UUs, UU symbols and rituals, and our Principles.

Supporting Children in Crisis

  • Talking about Death: A Dialogue between Parent and Child, by Earl A Grollman, is a compassionate guide for adults and children to read together, featuring a read-along story. It answers children’s questions about death and provides a list of resources and organizations that can help.
  • Supporting Children in the Face of Disaster or Trauma, by Tracey L. Hurd, gives families and congregations a process for using worship and learning activities to guide and support children’s response to disaster. Designed for multigenerational groups in the home or congregation, the book offers families ways to draw strength from our faith in times of tragedy.

For more information contact religiouseducation @ uua.org.

This work is made possible by the generosity of individual donors and congregations. Please consider making a donation today.

Last updated on Wednesday, April 2, 2014.

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