Frank Lloyd Wright once said, “Study Nature. Love Nature. Stay Close to Nature. It will never fail you.” We will be taking those words to heart in children’s Religious Education this fall! In the midst of the surging COVID numbers and a slower than anticipated vaccine roll-out for our youngest ones, we have been pondering, imagining, researching and dreaming about what might be possible and powerful for our young people.
Part of the answer to that question is our extraordinary outdoor spaces at Heritage! We are blessed as a community to have so many wonderful outdoor spaces, so we are going to craft our RE plan around those spaces both in terms of location and content. Not only does this nature-based outdoor approach optimize the interactivity for our kids while keeping them safe, it also engages our values by cultivating our young people as stewards of the earth and our church.
Our Preschoolers and Kindergartners can anticipate RE being filled with stories and play! Our 1st through 6th graders will be exploring outside in a nature-based experiential pick-your-own-adventure format. There will be intentional activities for both the younger and older kids in this format, AND we will be creating a buddy program to help our young people deepen their connections. We are still assessing the needs and opportunities for our middle schoolers, so those parents and young people should anticipate hearing from Laci to get your feedback. Our high schoolers will be embarking on a coming-of-age year as we help them articulate their deepest passions, convictions and yearnings, and they help us build the youth program around their needs, interests and capacities.
One additional benefit to this approach to RE is that it is full of Lifespan (yes, that’s you reading!) opportunities. Volunteering in our RE program is an awesome way to continue to develop your faith, to learn about our values, and to connect more deeply with our community. Right now, we are looking for nature-lovers, gardeners, artists, dancers, hikers, meditators, campers, and outdoorsy types to volunteer in our RE program. If you have a nature-based hobby or passion or have been doing environmental justice work – there is a place for your passion in our RE program. Please reach out to Laci to discuss the possibilities.
What to expect in September:
- Sunday, September 12th at 10:30 a.m. — Ingathering with Water Ceremony. Worship will be a Multi-generational Service!
- Saturday, September 18th from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. — All Church Outdoor Work Day. Our grounds are in need of a bit of TLC before we can fully utilize the spaces, so we are planning a church-wide work day. There is no better way to begin to deepen your relationship with our space than to take care of it. There will be opportunities for everyone from our youngest to our oldest to get involved. Please wear clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty in and bring a pair of gloves and water!
- Sunday, September 26th at 10:30 a.m. — Multi-generational Worship focused on the Jewish holiday of Sukkot. Laci will be leading the service.
- Sunday, October 10 – First Sunday of RE!
If you have questions, or to volunteer your talents, please contact Laci Lee Adams at: