Grades 6-8 Programming Alternates between Coming of Age and Neighboring Faith

Please contact Rebecca Fricke: for more information.


Neighboring Faiths –  2017-18

Team Leaders: Tom Fricke, Libby Walton-Stanforth, Polly Peterson and Kelly Aiken

This program is an excellent introduction to world religions and the faith communities that practice around us in the Amherst area.  The Neighboring Faiths program involves visiting one area faith community once a month, talking about the experience in relation to the UU faith once a month, coming to a UUSA service once a month (this may happen on the same day as the faith discussion) and then at the end of the year putting together a service on the year’s experience.  Neighboring Faiths will prepare the 6th and 7th graders for the following year when we hope they will participate in the Coming of Age program.


Coming of Age – 

The year starts with a bonding experience at a ropes course and ends with a pilgrimage to Boston to learn about UU heritage. One of the most important aspects of this curriculum is time devoted to learning spiritual practices such as prayer, meditation, social justice, art — focused time to leave behind any stress and concentrate fully on being at peace.  The beginning of the year is ritually started with a ceremony in church and the end of the year is marked by the kids sharing their credos — or personal faith statements — with the congregation.  A parents’ program is offered at the same time and that program focuses on exploring the faith aspect of the  curriculum the youth are doing.


Neighboring Faiths Schedule for 2017-18 – will be up soon!


Archive: COA Schedule for 2016-17 Grades 9-12: Youth Group

Sept 11: Water Communion / First meeting

Sept 18: Coming of Age Ceremony, followed by Ropes Course with Amherst Police Dept (noon-4)

Sept 24: Source to Sea Clean Up with Mentors (Morning to noonish). Spiritual Practice of Stewardship.

Oct 2: LEARN

Oct. 16: Spiritual Practice: Prayer (sacrifice and transcendence) Karen Fisk

Nov. 6: LOVE

Nov. 13: Spiritual Practice: Meditation (transcendence) Casey Attebery

Dec. 4: GIVE

Dec. 11: Spiritual Practice: Generosity/ Baking (kindness) Sue Kelsey

Jan. 7-8: Overnight 7 pm-10 am: Journey from & back to Home

Spiritual Practice: Caring for the Earth (thinking of future generations) Susan and Steve Rice (8 pm)

Feb. 5: WORK

March 5:WORK and HOPE

March 12:Spiritual Practice: Making Altars (focus)


April 9:Spiritual Practice: Preparing for Pilgrimage with Polly Peterson

May 5-7: Spiritual Practice: Pilgrimage—to Boston and Concord and Walden Pond

Day One:

· UU Urban Ministry, UUSC, and/ or UUA

· Overnight possibly Arlington St (tour for certain) possibly at a hotel

Day Two:

· Boston Common, Kings Chapel, Holocaust Memorial, Faneuil Hall for Lunch

· Framingham UU Church (overnight) possibly at a hotel

Day Three:

· Travel to Concord for church (Sunday morning)

· Visit Sleepy Hollow Cemetery and various UUs buried there (Sunday before lunch)

· Visit Walden Pond (Lunch)

May 20-21 Overnight to Prepare for Coming of Age Service

May 21: Celebratory Service of Coming of Age

May 20-21: Overnight to Prepare for Coming of Age Service

May 21: Celebratory Service of Coming of Age