This Week in Elementary and Spirit Play the children will participate in the Sources General Lesson. This lesson states there are seven promises we make to each other to help us be in community. They remind us that we are connected to each other and to the spirit of Love or Mystery which some people call God. Unitarian Universalists didn’t just make these promises or principles up one day. They came from many different ideas about how we should live that people have been talking about and studying for a long, long, time. If a tree is the Unitarian Universalism religion, then the promises would be the leaves and the seeds on the tree. They have grown because we have many roots feeding us.
The roots of our beliefs are called our Sources. There are six of them that Unitarian Universalists have chosen.
· Our beliefs come from our sense of wonder. We learn by asking why.
· Our beliefs come from the women and men of long ago and today whose lives remind us to be kind and fair. We learn by hearing their stories.
· Our beliefs about how to live together come from all the world’s religions. We learn from many cultures.
· Our beliefs come from Jewish and Christian teachings that tell us to love all others as we love ourselves. We learn from our past history.
· Our beliefs come from the use of reason and the discoveries of science. We learn by using our minds.
· Our beliefs come from the harmony of nature and the sacred circle of life. We learn by knowing we are a part of nature and the cycles of life.
Our promises come from our sources and what we have learned from them. But they come from somewhere else too. Our sources come from the Spirit of Love and Mystery, which some people call God.
The elementary students will be making the promises and sources tree as a follow up craft to this lesson. Parents may want to make the tie in that just like many experiences make each person unique and individual so do the different sources we draw on help to shape our faith. Some follow up question you might want to ask are:
“What do you think about the sources?”
“Do you think one source is more important than others?”
“Do you think that you are like the tree of Unitarian Universalism? Do you have roots and leaves in your own life?”
Often it is easy to forget the hard history of Unitarian Universalism. Our sources are the beginning steps of our journey for Truth and Meaning. Below you will find and expression of gratitude that can be shared as a prayer or promise for our sources.
We are thankful that all of these ways of learning are open to us.
We are thankful for the freedom to think for ourselves.
We are thankful that we are empowered to choose our own path.
We are thankful for all of the people in our congregations who love and support us.
We promise to love and support them too.