1) Choose an area of interest; 2) Make a plan; 3) Do it; 4) Reflect.
We looked at past and current ethical action projects led by Ethical Sunday Schools around the country. They include:
Sharon Appelquist (Chicago) and Ruthanne Worden (Westchester) shared their experience of Pennies for Peace. Adults can read the book Three Cups of Tea and kids can read the book Listen to the Wind to learn about the project. Then kids can collect pennies. Both Societies have raised lots of money through this project. Kids can make posters to advertise the collection. A large visible container is helpful. Kids can make announcements during Platform. Kids can distribute Ziploc collection baggies. There are lots of materials available on the website to facilitate the project.
Lisel Burns, leader emeritus of the Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture, shared her experience of working in Haiti since the mid-1990s. The Brooklyn Society has some personal connections with Haiti and 14 years ago formed a partnership with the city of Leogane, twenty miles from Port-au-Prince. Leogane was the epicenter of the recent earthquake. Lisel has returned to Leogane numerous times over the years and her trips continue. She described recently helping to build latrines for people who were displaced by the earthquake. Lisel's approach is respectful. She helps people help themselves and regain dignity. There is still a lot of debris to be cleared. Lisel invites others to consider their role and how they can help in Haiti.
Inspired? If you are interested in any of these projects, let me know and I can connect you with the Ethical Sunday School involved. Also, many of the websites for these projects can be accessed through our ethical education social bookmarking group. Look for us at diigo.com.
As a group, we discussed our collective action. There is interest in coordinating our activities to maximize our impact. Ethical people are invited to participate in these annual activities:
Trish Cowan, (St. Louis) AEU Religious Education Curriculum Director, shared new Ethical curriculum. If you are interested in piloting this curriculum, let me know and I will send it to you.
Our weekend also included lots of family fun. Alan Berger returned to lead us in cooperative games. I think we have a new record of six people on one chair in cooperative musical chairs! We also had fun participating in an intergenerational scavenger hunt and talent show.
On Sunday we ended the weekend with a colloquy on Generosity. We created an instant play of part of John Lovejoy Elliot's life based on the story in Tapestries.
The Religious Education Committee would like to thank the AEU for its continued support of this weekend. The opportunity to meet face to face with other religious educators from around the country is invaluable. We are stronger together.