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.

Registration

  • Payment at the time of registration is appreciated, as facilitators are not equipped to handle money and registration details. It also guarantees you a spot in the class.
  • If you’re unable to pay when you register, please contact Leo Jones (ljones@allsouls.ws) to request a scholarship.
  • If a class reaches its maximum before you register, you can be placed on a waiting list by contacting Leo.

Fees

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.

Registration

To register, find the class below and click on the appropriate link. NOTE: Dates listed below are subject to change. Please check the class registration page for finalized dates. Classes without registration buttons are either full or have already taken place.

Spiritual Growth and Transformation

Getting the Most Out of Life

When: Feb. 10, 17, 24; March 3, 10, 17 (6 Tuesdays), 7:00–9:00 PM
Where: All Souls Church
Maximum participants: 30
Facilitator: Matt Haygood

What can we find in the fields of mindfulness and positive psychology to help us increase happiness, lower stress, and achieve greater success? We’ll examine our personal experiences and learn practical skills to increase happiness on a daily and long-term basis. Attend any or all sessions.

1. Mindfulness & Happiness. After a brief overview of positive psychology and fundamental factors that lead to happiness we’ll then focus on mindfulness as a fundamental building block for enhancing happiness.

2. Gratitude. Gratitude has many benefits for overall happiness and well-being. We’ll learn concrete practices to cultivate daily gratitude.

3. Optimism. Optimism is a fundamental building block to lasting happiness. We’ll learn about explanatory styles and how to view our world more positively.

4. Relationships. Love is the single most important source of life satisfaction and emotional well-being. We’ll consider ways to develop healthy relationships and foster positive connections.

5. Strengths & Goal Setting. Feeling fulfilled daily is directly connected to using our strengths and striving for goals we set for ourselves. We’ll identify our signature strengths, find ways to use them, and learn how to form positive habits.

6. Purpose & Spirituality. Positive psychology distinguishes between a pleasurable life and meaningful life. We’ll examine meaning and purpose in life as a source of strength and motivation.

Philosophy and Prophecy: Socrates and Jesus

When: Feb. 24; March 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 (6 Tuesdays), 7:00–8:30 PM
Where: Eaton Room
Maximum participants: 12
Cost: $40
Facilitator: John Tambornino

The UU Living Tradition embraces both “humanist teachings which counsel us to heed the guidance of reason” and “Christian teachings which call us to respond to God’s love”; to that extent, it embraces both Socrates and Jesus. There are striking similarities in the lives and legacies of these two extraordinary teachers. Yet their beliefs—and their means of arriving at and presenting them—differ profoundly.

We’ll explore the captivating personalities and challenging teachings of Socrates and Jesus through careful reading of selections from Plato’s dialogues, the Gospels, and historic Unitarian thinker Joseph Priestley. The class welcomes participants of any philosophical or theological orientation who are prepared to complete weekly readings of difficult texts and to commit to attend all six meetings. No prior background in philosophy or theology is necessary.

My Vocation: Do I Really Have One of Those?

When: May 5, 12, 19, 26 (4 Tuesdays), 7:00–9:00 PM, plus half-day retreat on a Saturday TBD
Where: All Souls Church
Maximum participants: 12
Cost: $40
Facilitators: Michael Milano, Jen Bruneau, Sara Frueh

In this workshop, we’ll explore the meaning of vocation and calling and how they reveal themselves in our lives. Through exercises and discussions, we’ll consider vocational questions in our own lives, identify issues we may be struggling with, and explore them with others in a supportive community. The workshop’s goal is to help participants consider ways to more fully live out their authentic selves and values in the world – whether through paid work, volunteer activities, family life, or other avenues. By its conclusion, participants will be able to articulate their current sense of their vocation and will have tools and resources to help them pursue their vocational journeys. This workshop intentionally focuses on vocation rather than career: it is intended to help participants reflect on their histories and consider future directions. (It will not teach practical job-finding or networking skills.)

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 (sarafrueh@gmail.com).

Welcoming, Diverse, Vibrant Community

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.

Leadership for a New Era: Developing Leaders for All Souls Church

Leadership for a New Era. In the second offering of this exciting course, we’ll gain an appreciation for leadership as a spiritual practice and prepare to apply what we learn both within ASC and beyond. The six workshops sessions (Saturdays spread between Mar. 14 and May 16) are facilitated by creative ASC congregants knowledgeable in state-of-the-art leadership practices. Find additional information here or contact Susan Crim (buck_crim@msn.com). Preference will be given to applications received by Feb. 22.

Roots and Wings

When: February 17, 24, March 3, 10, 17, 24 (6 Tuesdays), 6:30-8:30 pm
Where: Dining Room
Maximum participants: 10
Cost: free
Facilitators: Justis Tuia and Victor Branham

Roots and Wings provides participants with the opportunity to: get to know fellow congregants and friends in a small group setting; explore and articulate their faith journeys and personal theology; learn the social justice history of All Souls; and explore the development of Unitarianism and the Unitarian Universalist movement.

Service and Prophetic Action

Why New Orleans Matters

When: March 11, 18, 25; April 1, 8 22 (6 Wednesdays), 7:00–9:00 PM
Where: All Souls Church
Maximum participants: 15
Cost: $40
Facilitator: Topher Kandik

New Orleans, or The Big Easy, is, according to author Dar Walnik, defined by three things: music, food, and corruption. It is a mélange of cultures and a city of incredible charm and charisma. Despite New Orleans’ status as one of the most beloved cities, we, as a country, turned away when Hurricane Katrina struck in 2005 and residents—often the poorest and most vulnerable of the city’s residents—had to beg for help in the form of water, shelter, food, and basic medicine.

What is our obligation as a country to rebuild and restore the city of New Orleans to its original greatness? What is our personal role in this rebuilding? Should we even care that this city was wiped out by the greatest natural disaster in the history of the United States? In short, the question we need to answer is: Why does New Orleans matter? We will explore the culture of New Orleans through group activities such as cooking (and eating), listening to music, screening films, and discussing essays and other works of literature. Each week we will read a selection of essays to guide discussion.

Race: The Power of an Illusion

When: March 26, April 2, 9 (3 Thursdays), 6:30–9:00 PM
Where: All Souls Library
Maximum participants: 15
Cost: $40
Facilitator: Leo Jones

What do we really know about race? Race: The Power of an Illusion, a 2003 documentary produced by California Newsreel, will challenge our assumptions and prompt us to reexamine what we think we know. Part I, “The Difference Between Us,” follows a group of high school students as they explore surprising genetic connections among their classmates, as a backdrop to a discussion about the origin of “racial” groups. Part II, “The Story We Tell,” examines the social contexts within which our notions of race are formed. Part III, “The House We Live In,” considers the institutions that capitalized upon and enforced segregation and discrimination. During each session, we will participate in group exercises, view the documentary, and engage in class discussions.

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