Adult Spiritual Development

The All Souls Adult Spiritual Development program brings people together in different places and formats, like different threads, to form a spiritual, intellectual, communal tapestry for our daily lives. ASD offerings fall into five categories. Click on each to be brought directly to that section.


  • To register, unless otherwise indicated, please email Gary Penn ( with the name of the class in the subject line.
  • You will soon be able to pay for your class online; in the meantime, you may bring payment to the first class or send (attn: Gary Penn) a check made out to All Souls Church Unitarian, with the class name on the note line. We turn nobody away; if you'd like a waiver of the fee, please contact Gary.
  • If a class reaches its maximum before you register, you can be placed on a waiting list by contacting Gary.


All ASD offerings, other than those related to membership or fellowship, have fees. Fees cover some portion of the cost of the whole program, but most of the cost is covered by congregant annual pledges. We encourage everyone (member or not) who takes an ASD class to pledge annually.

Spiritual Growth and Transformation

Paradise Spirituality: Reweaving Sacred Community for the Liberation of All Life

Paradise is of this world—not as a nostalgic past or a post-mortem future—but as a multidimensional reality of grace, struggle, beauty, and abundance. We’ll learn about ancient religious traditions, especially forgotten strands of Christianity, which existed before ideas of redemptive violence, centered on the crucifixion, led to church-sanctioned holy war, colonization, and conquest. The class is based on Rev. Parker's book (written with Rita Nakashima Brock), "Saving Paradise: How Christianity Traded Love of This World for Crucifixion and Empire" (Beacon Press, 2008). Participants are encouraged to buy the book in advance. (Amazon has used copies for sale.)

Six Tuesdays, 7:15-9:00 pm, Apr. 5-May 17 (not Apr. 19)
Facilitator: Rev. Rebecca Parker
Fee: $30

Our Whole Lives Comprehensive Sexuality Education for Adults

Want to learn what they didn't teach you in health class? This spring, All Souls offers two courses of the Our Whole Lives progressive and comprehensive sexuality and faith curriculum for adults. While these courses are non-sequential, we request that you plan to attend every session for whichever course you sign up for.

  • OWL for Adults (18+). Mondays, 7-9 pm, Apr. 11-May. 16, with two Saturday sessions, 9 am-3 pm, on Apr. 23 and May 7. Sign up here.

Contact Jen Du Mond ( or Althea Atherton ( with questions.

All Souls Bible Discussion Group

Gather with fellow UUs interested in Bible history and literacy, as we journey through the Hebrew Scriptures (otherwise known as the “Old Testament”). This comfortably paced reading will give us a grounded, structured method for discussing universal themes of contemporary relevance, such as love and fidelity, filial duty, group identity and survival, hospitality to strangers, inter-ethnic marriages, justice, territoriality and political power, our human search for divinity, transcendence, and wholeness. Conversely, in trying to situate ourselves in biblical times, we may learn that “self-evident and timeless” truths are actually time- and culture-bound. We’ll explore contradictions and repetitions and discover who wrote the Bible, for what purposes, and how it became holy over the centuries. All are welcome, and welcome any time: come every week or when the topic interests you! Although participants are encouraged to contribute perspectives from secondary literature, the only required text is a Bible (any version—in fact, different translations will help us extract the essence of the texts). We will place the Bible in its historical and cultural context, without deference to any dogmatic interpretations or theological teachings. Together we’ll discuss and evaluate the relevance of the Bible’s texts to UUs and other spiritual seekers. After working through the Hebrew Scriptures in 2015-16, we’ll move to the Christian Scriptures in 2016-17.

On March 29, discuss Proverbs 28 - 31, Ecclesiastes, the Song of Solomon, and Isaiah 1-3.

When: Tuesdays, 7:00-8:30 pm, Sep. 15, 2015-May 31, 2016
Where: All Souls
Cost: free
Facilitators: Jose Luis Sanchez ( and Dana E. Connors (

Philosophical Souls

When: 3rd Wednesday of the month, 7:00–8:30 PM
Where: All Souls Church or John Tambornino’s apartment
Facilitators: John Tambornino and Sara Frueh

Honoring Socrates’ belief in the unique rewards of the examined life, Philosophical Souls holds monthly discussions to tackle big questions in small settings. To participate, you only need what is available to us all—an open and inquiring mind. During each gathering we will explore a basic philosophical or theological question. Join us for one gathering or many! To be added to the mailing list to be notified about future meetings, e-mail Sara (

Welcoming, Diverse, Vibrant Community

Roots and Wings

This six-session course introduces members, new and old, to the history of our church and denomination. Contact Membership Director Heather Kramer ( for more information.

When: Tuesday evenings, 6:45-8:45 pm, April 19 - May 24
Where: All Souls
Cost: free
Limited to 15
Register here

About All Souls

Location varies
Several Sundays throughout the year. Look for dates in weekly announcements.
Learn and ask questions about Unitarian Universalism and All Souls Church. This informal session lasts about an hour.
No registration, no fee; just drop in.

Service and Prophetic Action

Economic Inequality in DC

For years, literature on DC politics and racism has been far scarcer than in most major American cities. We’ll discuss an exciting new book, Capital Dilemma: Growth and Inequality in Washington DC (one chapter each month, Mar.-May), and attend events where contributors to the volume present their work.

Final Wednesdays, Mar.-May, evenings
Facilitator: Sam Menefee-Libey
Fee: $5/session

White Allies Study and Reflection Group

Open to any white-identified congregants who want to explore the particular roles, responsibilities, and dynamics of being a white person working for racial justice. We’ll reflect on what it means (and doesn’t mean) to be an ally, how we can be accountable to people of color, what we’re doing to educate and support each other, and how we can engage more white people in the work. Through some presentation and a lot of conversation, we’ll help each other figure out how to be more effective allies and how our UU values can help guide and sustain us.

Four Thursday evenings, 6:45-8:45 pm, Mar. 24, Apr. 7, 14, 28
Facilitators: Whitney Cooper, Alisa Goldman, Rev. Rob Keithan, Bill Kules
Limit: 24
Fee: $20

This Changes Everything

Watch a documentary video about and then read and discuss Naomi Klein’s book, This Changes Everything: Capitalism and the Climate.

Four Mondays, 7:00-8:30 pm, May 2, 9, 16, and 23
Facilitators: Karl Grindal/Jose Luis Sanchez
Fee: $20

Other F-UU-N