RE NEWS: Summer Camps and Fall Start Up!

Joanne Dingus  (Director of Religious Education)

Joanne Dingus
(Director of Religious Education)

submitted by Joanne Dingus

My family got to go to SUUSI (a UU family camp) again this year. It was a little bit of an adjustment being at VA Tech instead of Radford but we figured it out pretty quickly. For those of you who have never been to SUUSI, it is a week long summer camp for people of all ages. There is programming for children, youth, teens, young adults and adults that includes nature trips, UU topics of interest, creative art workshops, music workshops and workshops just to have fun. There is also worship available twice a day, outdoor community time and lots and lots of music!
Jaimie and I worked with children each day and Jerry practiced and performed with the School of Rock band. There are many ways to volunteer and earn credit to help pay your way. We stayed in dorm rooms and ate at the dining hall. It’s a great way to spend a week surrounded by happy UU’s.
Next year SUUSI will be held at Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, NC and will likely stay there for many years. It’s a longer drive for us but the mountain views look amazing and the University is really excited about having us there. If you are looking for a wonderful family vacation next July, I encourage you to check out SUUSI at Oh, and by the way, I’ve taken on the role of Youth Director, so if you have questions about the children’s program, just ask!
Colossal Creativity Camp
Rosalee and I led our first Colossal Creativity Art Camp this year. We had 14 campers and lots of helpers. I want to thank Asher, Jaimie, Gwen and Claire for their help with the kids. Also thanks to Mason and Patricia for the bamboo, Kirsten for some morning help, Jerry for some afternoon help and thanks to everyone who donated supplies! We had lots of fun making bridges, painting pictures, doing sculpture, graffiti, making wind chimes, collage, beads, buttons, splatter painting, you name it, we did it!
Start Up
We’ve had an enjoyable summer learning about trees and our environment. Fall start up is about to happen with the first day of new classes starting on September 6th. We will have our usual 9:30 class for 3-11 year olds using the Tapestry of Faith curriculum Signs of our Faith. Older students who come to the 9:30 class are invited to attend Adult RE or attend service. Our 11:00 service will be divided into the following age groups; Nursery (0-3), Spirit Play (3-5), Signs of our Faith and UU’s Make a Difference (6-10), Building Bridges (11-13), Virtue Ethics (14-18.)
The middle and high school groups will meet at 11:00 in the office building most weeks. Once a month they will be given the chance to go to service to experience group worship.
The preschool through elementary students will start in service, hear the children’s focus and then go to their classes in the sanctuary building from there. Just a reminder that class descriptions and home activities will be sent to you in the weekly digest and be posted on our website and in the order of service.
I’d like to thank all of our volunteer teachers for making the commitment to teach and learn with our children and youth!
See you in the RE!



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