CYRE newsletter

UUCPA RE newsletter: December, 2013


1. December calendar
   1a. Senior High calendar
2. From your Associate Minister of Religious Education
3. Holiday events
4. Guest at Your Table
5. OWL program for grades 7-9

1. December calendar

Sun., Dec. 1, 9:30 a.m.: Regular Sunday school
   11 a.m.: Baby Journey
Tues., Dec. 3, 7:15 p.m.: CYRE Committee meeting in Room B
   5:00 p.m.: Latke feast
Sun., Dec. 8, 9:30 a.m.: Regular Sunday school
   11 a.m.: Parent Journey
   12:00 noon: Second Sunday brunch
   6:30 p.m.: OWL gr. 7-9 parent orientation
Sun., Dec. 15, 9:30 a.m.: Regular Sunday school
   10:30 a.m.: Caroling in the Fireside Room
Sun., Dec. 22, 9:30 a.m.: No-Rehearsal Christmas Pageant
   10:30 a.m.: Fourth Sunday brunch
Tues., Dec. 24, 6:30 and 8 p.m.: Candlelight services
Sun., Dec. 29, 9:30 a.m.: Child care only, no Sunday school

1a. Senior High Youth Group (SHYG) calendar:

Sun., Dec. 1, 10:30-12:30: Sell pies at Sunday services
Sun., Dec. 8, 10:30-12:30: Sell pies at Sunday services
   6:30 p.m.: SHYG meeting
Sat., Dec. 14, 6 p.m.: Bake pies
Sun., Dec. 15, 10:30-12:30: Deliver pies at Sunday services


2. From your Associate Minister of Religious Education

If you are in town for the holidays, I strongly recommend that you bring your children (and teenagers) to two services at UUCPA — the No-Rehearsal Christmas Pageant on Sunday, Dec. 22, and one of the Christmas Eve candlelight services on Tuesday, Dec. 24, either at 6:30 or 8:00 p.m.

Kids get bombarded with all kinds of messages at Christmas. Mostly, they get bombarded with the message that Christmas is a time to buy more stuff. And when Christmas is presented as a religious holiday, our kids get messages of traditional (and often very conservative) Christianity.

As Unitarian Universalists, we don’t believe in consumerism on the one hand, nor in conservative Christianity on the other hand. We believe that there is more to life than buying stuff. And rather than focusing on the supernatural elements of Jesus’s birth, we talk about how the baby Jesus grew up to challenge injustice. We talk about miracles, but we talk about how every baby’s birth is miraculous.

UUCPA parents are already teaching their children that Christmas is not about consumerism, and that we have our own interpretation of who Jesus was. When you bring your kids to the No-Rehearsal Christmas Pageant, and to the candlelight services on Christmas Eve, the whole congregation helps you reinforce those messages — not just in the services, but your children are exposed to many other adult role models who also have this same attitude towards Christmas.

I hope to see you and your children on Sunday, December 22 at 9:30, and at one of the Christmas Eve services, too!

3. Holiday events

There are lots of holiday events at UUCPA, including a latke feast on Tuesday, Dec. 3, two different solstice services, singing, and more — too many events to list here! Please visit the holiday Web page on the main UUCPA Web site.

4. Guest at Your Table

We love the Guest at Your Table program of the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC). Each year, between Thanksgiving and Christmas, families can put a Guest at Your Table box on their dinner table. When your family sits down to dinner, each person (including kids!) puts some money in the Guest at Your Table box to support the UUSC’s humanitarian programs around the world. Towards the end of December, families count up the money they deposit in the box (and the grown-ups add something to round it up to the nearest ten or twenty dollar mark). On the Sunday before Christmas, families bring their boxes with a check inside to be collected at the service, and the congregation will send all the money to the UUSC.

This year you get to decorate your own Guest at Your Table box! Pick up a blank box, and pictures provided by the UUSC representing some of the people our donations will benefit.

The Guest at Your Table program is a great way to teach your kids about charitable donations. Learn more here.

5. Our Whole Lives comprehensive sexuality education program for grades 7-9

This winter and spring, UUCP A will offer Our Whole Lives (OWL): Sexuality Education for grades 7-9. The program will be offered on Sunday evenings and several Saturday afternoons. Offering OWL classes at night allows families the option of attending both the CRE program on Sunday mornings and the OWL program on Sunday evenings. Due to the extensive material covered for this age, the weekend sessions have been incorporated into the schedule in order to complete the curriculum by May.

You can find full information about the program, including a parent letter, full schedule, and permission forms, online here.

6. You may have noticed that we now have a new Web address. The UUCPA Children and Youth Religious Education (CYRE) Web site is now:

The old Web address will continue to work, but this one is easier to type in.