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A voice of progressive religious tradition since 1843
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Adult Religious Education

About Adult Religious Education

Current and Upcoming Classes
Religion and Brain-Soothing?

Thursday, February 28, 7:00-9:00 PM
Facilitators: Bob Fuller
Location: RE Commons
Overview: Join Bob Fuller, Professor of Religious Studies at Bradley University, for a view of religion from an unexpected direction. What do religious belief and religious rituals across all time and all cultures have in common? This class will present a simple argument: that the common denominator in all religious belief and practice is the potential for relieving stress and soothing the brain. Evidence from anthropology and neuroscience will be examined. Child care is available if you contact the church office by the Tuesday before the class.

Thursday, March 7, 7:00–9:00 PM
Facilitators: Helen Martin
Location: Conference Room
Overview: Shamanism dates back at least 50,000 years and has been practiced in many differing forms throughout history. It’s a transformational spirituality with requisite ritual functions as well as deep personal commitment. It’s a tool for healing bodily, emotional, spiritual, and mental ills, both individually and collectively. Perhaps shamanism finds relevancy in today’s world. This class will introduce some aspects of shamanism as one form of religion. Child care is available if you contact the church office by the Tuesday before the class. 

Free Exercise of Religion? Conflicting Interpretations

Thursday, March 14, 7:00–9:00 PM
Facilitators: Emily Gill
Location: Conference Room
Overview: The Constitution protects the free exercise of religion, and for some adherents this protection outweighs most other considerations. For others, however, civil rights protections should be paramount. In her talk, Emily Gill, author and professor of political science at Bradley University, will establish a framework that can in some cases help resolve this dilemma. She will then discuss several current issues in this context, including the Hobby Lobby and Masterpiece Cakeshop cases, to illustrate this framework. Child care is available if you contact the church office by the Tuesday before the class.

A Course in Miracles
Sundays, 8:45-10:00 AM
Facilitators: Suzette Boulais
Location: Conference Room
Overview: The Course states that a universal theology is not possible; there exists different, yet valid, pathways to the Truth. The Course is one of those pathways. Maybe you've heard the Course referred to by Eckhart Tolle, Marianne Williamson, or Oprah Winfrey.
The way we experience and interpret the world depends on the ideas that fill our minds. If they are small, weak, superficial, and incoherent, life will appear insipid, uninteresting, petty, and chaotic. If our ideas are unlimited, strong, deep, and clear, anything is possible. Use your inner eye, develop your imagination, create the internal picture so we can collectively picture the world we desire. We are learning to walk in the world with a quiet sense of confidence, trust, and inner peace.
“There is no hell” (T.15.1.7:1), only the experience of searing pain that follows making the wrong choice. Release from this pain/hell lies in learning that the mind that chose wrongly can choose again. A Course In Miracles teaches that the mind has the power to choose between “heaven or hell” right here, right now. Just as UU is the “no hell” church, the Course in Miracles is a “no hell” path of spiritual psychology.
Join us anytime.
Conscious Aging, A Wisdom Circle
Third Tuesdays, 7:00-9:00 PM
Facilitators: Various
Location: Conference Room
Overview: In these gatherings, we explore the new purposes and meanings that arise in all our lives as we age. The times we live in are asking each of us, not only for our own lives, but for the lives of present and future generations: what is being called forth, and how do we rise to meet that? Each month a guest presenter discusses a specific topic, followed by a discussion of one chapter of the book Ageless Soul by Thomas Moore. See the Builder newsletter for more information about upcoming meetings.

Dependency & Addictions
Contact the office
Facilitators: To be arranged
Location: To be arranged
Overview: If you have interest in AA, Al-Anon, or Alateen, contact the church office at 309-688-5608.
Grief Support
Contact the office
Facilitators: Ministers
Location: To be arranged
Overview:  When we have a loss in our lives, grief is not optional; it is natural and inevitable. As we go through grief, there are ways to make the process more meaningful and perhaps a little easier to bear. Our ministers can help you explore some of those ways and provide you with caring support. If you have had a loss, please consider contacting the office at 309-688-5608 or office@peoriauuchurch.org to arrange for one of our ministers to meet with you.
Humanist Perspectives
First Sundays, 12-2 PM
Facilitators: Harry Elger
Location: Conference Room
Overview: What differences and compatibilities do humanists share with theists, free thinkers, skeptics, agnostics, atheists, secularists, rationalists, relativists, scriptural literalists, pagans, Earth-based religions, scientists, and critical thinkers? Are there innate human values, virtues, morals, and ethics shared by these groups? Put your thinking cap on and join us.
Native American Spirituality Gathering (Council at Pimiteoui)
Typically Second Sundays, 12:30 PM
Facilitators: Jan Roberts
Location: Conference Room
Overview: The brief gathering will include smudging, inspirational readings from Indian elders, and personal reflections. If you are interested in the Sunday afternoon group, please contact the church office at 309-688-5608 for future meeting dates.