We, the Religious Education Committee of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Lower Bucks, envision our focus on spirituality to incorporate what is Unitarian Universalism in the spirit of guidance and with time for reflection, while having the freedom to question.
We want our children to feel excited about being in an environment of love and support, while experiencing friendship and respect, in an exceptional Unitarian Universalist community that models shared values in the context of emotional, psychological and physical safety.
The young people of the UU Fellowship of Lower Bucks will:
Understand the seven UU principles, and be able to incorporate them into their daily lives
Be able to understand and explain Unitarian Universalism, both as it has been historically, and as it is today in our congregations and as a larger movement
Explore the world’s religions, in an effort to become effective and respectful partners in dialogue
Learn to put faith into action through social service and social justice opportunities
Cultivate deep self-knowledge and self-worth in an atmosphere of acceptance and encouragement
Develop a lifelong eagerness to learn, with open minds and open hearts
Experience the joy of belonging to a welcoming multigenerational religious community that can become a deep-rooted spiritual home
UUFLB will provide relevant lifespan Religious Education in a nurturing and accepting environment. We commit to helping our children build a spiritual foundation that embraces diversity of thought, and encourages faith in action based on our shared values and Unitarian Universalist principles. We will expand their horizons by teaching them our UU heritage, as well as exploring other world religions and their development. By participating in social action projects, and focusing on peaceful interactions, we will encourage our children to find their place in the world and foster their individual Unitarian Universalist identity. We accept this mission fully respecting our privilege to guide our youth in releasing their talents, gifts and creativity.
Our community accommodates all who seek a place to belong and be accepted -- visitors are always welcome.
Thank you for considering our congregation as a religious home for your family, we think you will like it here!
RITES OF PASSAGE
Unitarian Universalists have their own rites of passage. These may vary within each congregation. Our congregation regularly facilitates Child Dedication, Coming of Age, and Bridging ceremonies.
Unitarian Universalist congregations have child dedication services for infants, young adopted children, or young children whose families have recently joined the congregation. We dedicate children at any age. The parents will bring the child to the front of the sanctuary at a designated time in a regular Sunday worship service, and the minister presides over the ceremony.
The dedication ceremony is a celebration of the blessing of new life, an expression of the parents’ hopes for their child, and a call to the parents and the congregation’s members to lead and nurture the child’s spiritual life as it grows. One of the special elements of the ceremony is that when parents bring their children before our congregation to be dedicated, we give the babies an unopened rose, symbolizing the beauty and newness of their lives and we remove from the rose all the thorns that might cause pain.
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Coming of Age
Coming of Age Ceremonies (COA), marking the transition from childhood to young adult, are as old as history. They have included confirmations, vision quests, and bar and bat mitzvahs, all to help youth learn about themselves and prepare for adulthood. Our Religious Exploration program marks this transition with a two year Coming of Age program which emphasize self-reflection, confidence building, service to the fellowship and community, and a culminating affirmation ceremony where students read their statement of faith. During this two year program, students usually participate in a Heritage Trip to Boston, Massachusetts to visit the UUA and learn more about our UU history. Coming of Age Programs are generally started in the middle school years as part of our Junior Youth group program.
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This is the rite of passage, held during a Spring congregational Sunday service, in the youths’ 12th grade year. Bridging marks the transition from being a teen to young adulthood The Bridging ceremony recognizes, honors, and celebrates the youth who have, in many cases, been in our Religious Exploration program for many years and now are moving on. We also give an unopened rose to the youth, but this time the thorns have not been removed which represents life with all of its joy but also difficulties. At this time bridging youth also address the congregation with their self-reflection of their years with the congregation and what they will take with them as they go forth.
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