These resources can help families with children engage with our theme for the month.
April: What does it mean to be a family of Wholeness?
Family Adventure Ideas
In honor of the traditional unleavened bread served during the Jewish holiday of Passover this month, make these matzo pizzas and reflect on the slices of life which you celebrate, and which are ignored or minimized. The pizza represents the whole person with intellectual, spiritual, emotional, vocational, financial, physical and social slices.
Stories to Read Together
Meet Jesus by Lynn Tuttle Gunney Illustrated By: Jane Conteh-Morgan
“Meet Jesus introduces children to Jesus’ life and message of love, kindness, peace and tolerance with simple text and lively, full-color illustrations. This book is a resource for a wide range of liberal religious parents and teachers, appropriate for Unitarian Universalists, progressive Christians, humanists, non-Christians and families blending more than one religious tradition; ideal for church groups and home.” – UUA Bookstore
Theme Message: Jesus’ message of love, kindness, peace and tolerance is a path to wholeness in a broken world.
Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña (Author), Christian Robinson (Illustrator)
“A little boy and his Nana take the bus after church to a shelter. There they help serve food to people living there. The inclusiveness comes in how Nana speaks to CJ her grandson about all the different people they encounter on their journey.” https://www.notimeforflashcards.com/2018/03/picture-books-promote-diversity-inclusion.html
Theme Message: The grandmother models how to be part of a diverse community that not only accepts but celebrates everyone. This is the widening of the circle for wholeness.
We are made whole by helping others. Instead of an Egg Hunt, offer a Can Hunt. Hide the cans the same way that Easter Eggs are hidden, on a lawn. You will need sturdy baskets, or the children bring one or two at a time. Make the journey to donate the cans to a Food Bank.
An additional angle is for Earth Day. Avoid cheap plastic stuff on a day when we want to take care of the earth.
Family Movie Night Ideas
Even 70 years after its release, director Victor Fleming’s film is quite obviously a masterpiece of early cinema. Not only does it have one of the most iconic female roles and one of the finest examples of the hero’s journey, which has influenced every epic quest tale from Star Wars to Harry Potter, but it is also a magical combination of drama, adventure, fantasy, and musical. This is one of the rare movie phenomena that modern-day grandparents can remember seeing as little ones, and that nostalgia can be easily shared with yet another generation of children, who can now watch it in high-definition or Blu Ray. It’s a testament to the movie’s universal appeal that seven decades later, The Wizard of Oz is still culturally significant — from Halloween costumes to sing-along-shows to remixes of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” Common Sense Media
Theme Connection: Becoming whole…” If I only had a brain, a heart, some courage, a home.”
Hidden Figures (PG)
“HIDDEN FIGURES is the true story of three African-American women who worked for NASA in the 1950s and ’60s. They served as “human computers,” doing complex mathematics and engineering tasks to help launch the manned spaceflight program — particularly, sending astronaut John Glenn (Glen Powell) into orbit.” – Common Sense Media
Theme connection: Shows the need for the Civil Rights Movement and Women’s Movement in order for the talents of women and African Americans to become recognized and our society to become whole. We won’t be whole as a society until we tell the whole story of our history.
March: What does it mean to be a family of Journey?
Family Adventure Ideas
Pilgrimage – the Journey Out
What places would be considered pilgrimages in your family? A special bench in a park where you shared news of a new family member? A place where a pet is buried? A National Park where a child made their first big hike? Name these places as places of pilgrimage for your family.
Stories To Read Together
Share all three. They are wordless so use it as a silent moving picture book.
Lost and Found Cat: The True Story of Kunkush’s Incredible Journey by Doug Kuntz (Author), Amy Shrodes (Author), Sue Cornelison (Illustrator)
“This heartwarming true story about one lost cat’s journey to be reunited with his refugee family gently introduces children to a difficult topic and shows how ordinary people can help with compassion and hope.” – Amazon.
Theme Message: On scary journeys, you are never alone as you think. You can always trust others to surprise you with help along the way.
The Fountain of Fair Fortune from Tales of Beedle the Bard by J K Rowling
Family Movie Night Ideas
Lion King (G)
Theme Connection: The journey of life is a circle of birth, life and death.
The Velveteen Rabbit – The Journey of Becoming Real (min. 19:00 – 25:51)
This UU favorite celebrates the idea that each journey is a journey of transformation. Indeed, as a religion, you might say that our “salvific moments” are our individual journeys. The journey itself saves us. This classic children’s tale takes that idea and adds the message that the most important journey is that of being loved into being real. Its tender message echoes the circle of life, in which one ending becomes a beginning.
Soul Matters Spotify Music Playlists:
Discover musical inspiration on each of our monthly themes through our playlists:
For Parents and Guardians (as Faith Formation Guides)
Unitarian Universalist Child Dedication Ceremonies – Marking the Beginning of the Journey of life
If you are interested in the UU Child Dedication Ceremony, contact your worship leader or minister.
Family Journeys – Marking the end of the journey of life
When Families Grieve – Sesame Street
UU Family Rituals for other times on the Journey of Life