Soul Matters Sharing Circle (Soul Matters) is the program we use to provide themes and material for worship, religious education, and small group gatherings. Soul Matters invites us to explore and to reflect upon a different spiritual theme each month.
What Happens at a Soul Matters Session
Chalice lighting and a short reading or piece of music.
Brief check-in. Members briefly share what is going on “beneath the surface” for them. Typically takes no more than 20 minutes.
Facilitated discussion inspired by the monthly participant packet (readings, questions for reflection and suggested spiritual exercises which participants receive a few weeks before the meeting). We will consider the question “What does it mean to be a people of ________?” (see monthly themes below)
Check-out. An opportunity to briefly share reactions to the meeting.
Closing words or music.
Soul Matters 2023-2024 Themes
This year’s themes are The Gift of:
January: Liberating Love
February: Justice & Equity
How Do I Sign Up?
We currently have two Soul Matters sharing circles with a few openings yet remaining. These groups (of no more than 10 people) meet to explore the material provided in the monthly packets. Both groups meet online, via Zoom. If you’d like to join one of these groups, please let Taphi know at firstname.lastname@example.org. There are a limited number of spots available. If we have the interest, we’ll look to open another group.
3rd Tuesday of the month from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. via Zoom (starting in September)
4th Wednesday of the month from 6:30-8:30 p.m. via Zoom (starting in October)
Monthly packets are available via SharePoint.
The packets contain wonderful exercises and links to other media relating to this month's topic. You do not need to be a member of one of the above groups to download your copy, but we hope you'll considering joining us!
If you're new to Soul Matters, start with the New Participant Guide here.
And something new...
This year we’re introducing another way to engage with the Soul Matters material. Each month we’ll provide a Fellowship-wide spiritual practice related to our theme. You’ll find this on our website as well as in the newsletter. Then, on the 4th Sunday of each month, at 11:00, you’re invited to join others for Soulful Sundays a gathering for those who wish for further reflection and companionship around the spiritual practice. Give it a try!
October's Spiritual Practice:
Ask Them About Their Dance with Heritage
One of the best ways to explore our monthly themes is to have conversations about them with people close to you. It not only deepens our conversations but also our relationships.
Below is a list of “heritage questions” to help you on your way. Be sure to let your conversation partner know in advance that this won’t be a typical conversation. Telling them a bit about Soul Matters will help set the stage. Come ready to share what surprised you about the conversation(s) and what gift or insight it gave you.
• If you could talk to one of your ancestors, who would you
choose? And what would you ask them?
• What story told by (or about) your ancestors has shaped
you the most?
• What story do you want to be remembered by?
• What is your favorite family memento? And why does it
have such a hold on you?
• If you could change one thing about your family heritage,
what would it be?
•If you could change one thing about
our culture’s political heritage/history, what would it be?
• What’s the legacy of your first embarrassment
• What’s the legacy of your first award/triumph?
• It’s been said that we are remembered for the rules we
break. What broken rule might you be remembered by?
October's Soulful Sunday gathering will be on
October 22nd at 11:00.
Our meditation group meets every Monday from 6-7 p.m. in the upstairs foyer. We are a small informal group that shares an abiding interest in meditation. Usually, we have between 5 and 10 participants. We are not affiliated with any sect or religion, however we often follow meditations in the Buddhist tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh, Jack Kornfield, Pema Chodron and the like.
We generally get together at 6 p.m. for brief hellos and pertinent comments. Then a facilitator for the week will offer a short reading or discussion on a meditation topic, followed by a guided meditation, related to the topic. The meditation can be anywhere between 20 and 40 minutes. Afterward we have a short debriefing and discussion of the experience. We adjourn at 7 p.m. There is no designated leader of the group and there is no effort to persuade anyone to any point of view.
We welcome newcomers to our group. This group is free and requires no dues or contributions. No previous meditation experience necessary.