Religious Education Corner
RE Corner October 2014
Once again, the LIAC (Long Island Area Council) is offering the OWL (Our Whole Lives) sexuality education course for students in grades 7, 8, and 9. The series will be offered this fall in a seven session series. Each session will be 5 hour including a meal. All are on Sunday afternoons. Attached is the flyer with the dates and further details.
Although basic Sex Education is covered in this program, the vast majority of OWL focuses on identity formation, and progressive religious values. There are more than 27 lessons in all that we compact into seven sessions. Topics covered vary from cyber bullying to gender identity, from body image to peer pressure. This year the UUA has overhauled the curriculum and we will be presenting the newest version of OWL with more emphasis on relationships and social media.
Did you know that LGBTQ youth are twice as likely to commit suicide as youth identified as heterosexual? The good news is that youth who receive the support of their religious community and are embraced for having the inherent worth and dignity acknowledged in each human being, they are more likely to seek help when they need it, 50% more
likely to wait to engage in sexual intercourse, and 80% more likely to use a condom when they do. This course saves lives, but only if our youth participate.
Our Whole Lives is a nationally recognized program known as the gold standard in sexuality education. In the secular world of public health policies, this is the preeminent program for youth! It is also central to our faith - reflecting our principles by helping youth explore their identity and decide how they are going to relate to the real world they live in. It is possibly our most concrete way to help our youth connect our values to their lived experience. How do you help reduce teen dating violence? How do you stand up for friends who are being bullied because of their sexuality, body or gender? What
does our religion teach us about self-respect?
Our hope for this program is that the youth build community with each other within our Fellowship walls, and with the greater Long Island UU youth community. Hopefully, they will want to continue to come to the Fellowship even more than when the class began. Our dedicated teachers are working hard to make this a reality.
Please feel free to contact Gretta Johnson-Sally, DRE or Rev. Margie Allen with questions or concerns.
Director of Religious Education
To share the latest news in RE, join our UUFSB RE Facebook group. Click here to go to the page.