October Assembly: Rituals

October’s Sunday Assembly theme is “Rituals” and we’ll be celebrating everyone’s favorite modern secular version of an ancient pagan ritual–Halloween! Since we no longer have evil spirits to ward off, just put on your costumes and eat as much mass produced candy as your tax dollars can subsidize!

Rituals are an important way that communities use to bring people together, celebrate major transitions in life, death and the passage of time. The religious origins of many rituals make many in the secular community uncomfortable with the idea, but there are important psychological benefits to rituals that should not be dismissed. We already participate in secular rituals all the time–birthdays, graduations, or even greetings like shaking hands. Most religious rituals have become secularized–weddings, funerals and most holidays all have secular versions.

Our speakers will be talking about how to bring the power of ritual into modern life while staying true to our secular values. Aleta Ledendecker will give a presentation on “Why We Still Need Rituals” and talk about her experience as a humanist celebrant conducting secular weddings and funerals. Jon Webster will also give a talk about how to create the perfect morning ritual to start your day off right.

For the children’s program, we’ll be doing our gender roles program that we didn’t get to do last month. Joy will lead a discussion group for the older kids, asking questions about gender roles but letting the kids lead the discussion from there. Aleta has prepared a lesson on gender roles for the younger kids, and they’ll also be doing “Bag of Wonders,” an idea borrowed from Camp Quest where boys and girls alike play dress up, paint faces and fingernails, and basically just let it all hang out. We’ll also provide a snack, but don’t forget that parents must sign a one-time waiver that acknowledges rules and responsibilities, documents special needs like allergy information, as well as a sign-in sheet each time.

Please arrive at 10:30 to mingle and get situated since the assembly begins at 10:45. Since The International’s Layover Brunch is on hiatus, we’ll be headed to Clancy’s Tavern for brunch. We look forward to seeing old and new friends as we celebrate the one life we know we have…together!
WHERE: 940 Blackstock Ave, Knoxville, TN
WHEN: 10/23/2016 10:30:00