A parent in my meeting shared with me that they were not sure how to talk to their children about Russia’s war on Ukraine. I recalled a line in an article that had resonated for me as a parent and educator: We don’t have to protect children from difficult feelings, but we must not leave them alone with them. The Tote Bag newsletter for March/April has many resources and events to share with meetings and families, but these ideas for supporting one another and talking about ways to create peace are perhaps the most important. [Read more…] about Religious Education Resources for March & April 2022
Religious Education Resources
We are a people full of stories. Stories help us create meaning, make sense of our world, and develop identity. Stories are how some of the greatest teachers, including Jesus of Nazareth, shared their message and showed the path of a faithful life. This series of Godly Play and Faith & Play stories about the life and ministry of Jesus can be used during the time leading up to Easter, and are for viewing with meeting communities or sharing at home. While the style of this storytelling is often associated with programs for children, we all need and yearn for stories. These are for all of us at any age! [Read more…] about Stories of Faith on the Road to Easter
Sallie Jones and Leslie Leonard from Birmingham Friends Meeting, West Chester, PA, share a story about their program, Exploring Quakerism for Newcomers. The program provides an overview of Quakerism and how Friends meetings work. Two members of the meeting lead the program and orient seekers to the faith and help them build relationships within the meeting.
A few years ago, my meeting’s RE committee planned to focus on one of the Friends testimonies each month, and found we got stuck (in a good way!) on peace. We ended up creating a year-long program that started with peace in ourselves and moved outward each month in circles of expanding communities: exploring peace in our homes, meeting, neighborhoods, and the world. [Read more…] about Religious Education Resources for January & February 2022
Over the last four weeks, more than 50 Friends registered to gather on Sunday evenings for an online adult religious education series exploring Advent — the time of expectant waiting before Christmas — with scripture, discussion, guided activities, prayers, and readings. [Read more…] about Advent Program Invites Reflection and Transformation
How do you pray? What personal practices do you have that bring you into relationship and conversation with the Spirit? How do prayer practices nurture your spiritual life and anchor your experience of gathering with others for meeting for worship? In my experience, we don’t talk a lot about prayer in Quaker religious education — how to pray with children, teach prayers to children, or why we might offer this as a practice for their “spiritual toolbox.” I’ve been collecting ideas and resources over time, hoping to bring together interested Friends to talk about prayer with children. On December 2, several Friends gathered for an online Religious Education Conversation on “Prayer with Children,” and what is shared below is from a presentation, participant sharing, and group reflections. [Read more…] about How Do We Pray with Children?
After I became a parent, I wanted to slow down the approach to Christmas for our young children. I hoped to celebrate more than one morning with presents under the tree, and wanted them to understand the story behind the familiar Nativity pageant scene of robed humans and animal acolytes. That was when I rediscovered the weeks of Advent in a new way, through the Godly Play story and its words: [Read more…] about Religious Education Resources for December 2021
Let us center the experience and contributions of Black Americans and Black Quakers in the past — and today. The resources below provide an opportunity to do so while exploring racism, privilege, and bias with young people in our care. There is more work to do!
As the pandemic continues, and this week our nation struggles once more against the legacy of racial injustice and violence, our children look on.
Children and teens are experiencing the continued uncertainty of Covid and its impact on school, peer relationships, and future plans. Additionally, the events in Washington D.C. on January 6 were deeply disturbing and young people may feel anxiety, confusion, fear, sadness, or anger, and have questions about what they see and hear in the media and from friends. As parents, we’re holding space for our children’s feelings alongside our own anxiety, fury, and questions about moving forward. What follows are resources specifically for children, youth, and families.*