Religious Education

Jill M. Hall, Director Religious Education

Jill Hall came to Unitarian Universalism as a young adult and became involved in Religious Education/Exploration shortly thereafter. She has filled many different RE roles in the various congregations she has been involved in; leading Religious Exploration groups for children, youth and adults, providing nursery care, leading worship, storytelling, serving on the RE committee and as DRE for two different congregations. Jill finds that her own faith development is continually expanded, refined and challenged through her work with young UUs. Jill has been KUUC’s DRE since 2014 and works in a local elementary school in special education. She lives in Keene with her husband, three children and one very shaggy dog.

RE Calendar – October 2019

Sunday, October 6
No RE this morning. Children are welcome to remain in the sanctuary during the service.

2:30-4:30 Neighboring Faiths group meets in the Alliance Room. Today we explore Unitarian Universalism. An adult helper is needed.

Sunday, October 13
Children up to grade 5 join Betsy Stacey for an exploration of belonging. They will begin in the sanctuary and be sung out to the church grounds; please send your child(ren) with a weather-appropriate jacket or sweater. An adult helper is needed.

11:30-1:00 PM Religious Exploration Committee meets in the Alliance Room. All are welcome. Learn more here.

Sunday, October 20
Children begin in the sanctuary. Children Kindergarten age and up may join Deborah Dunnell in the downstairs Blocks Room for a “drop-in” session. Please see elsewhere in the Messenger for a description of Blocks sessions.

11:30 AM This morning we will be moving the Blocks room upstairs to the KUUC wing to allow for the expansion of Growing Minds, KUUC’s downstairs tenant. Helpers (and a handcart!) are needed to make swift work of this move. If you can help and/or lend a handcart, please let Jill or Deborah Dunnell know.

2:30-4:30 PM Neighboring Faiths group meets in the Alliance Room. Since the group will be deciding which faiths to explore and engage with, the topic for this day is TBD. It is sure to be enlightening and rewarding no matter what the subject. Volunteer to be an adult helper/co-learner for this session and expand your understanding.

Sunday, October 27
Children remain in the sanctuary this morning for our annual Multigenerational Service of Remembrance. Please see the description elsewhere in the Messenger for more information.

Neighboring Faiths

This autumn, Keene UU Church (KUUC) is offering middle school youth the opportunity to engage personally with the faith traditions in our community and to go beyond tolerance of religious diversity to a deeper understanding and appreciation of multiculturalism. Participants will learn about world religions, their origins, beliefs and practices, and engage with faiths by visiting houses of worship or hosting conversations with believers. By combining two established curricula, Neighboring Faiths (UUA, 1997) and Building Bridges (Tapestry of Faith, 2013), the adult facilitators of this group will support the participants in choosing faiths they would like to explore (learn about) and engage with (visit or host representatives). Program goals for participants include increasing knowledge of religions practiced around the world and locally; reflecting on what is unique and universal in religious experience; exploring their own values and deepening their spiritual search; and fostering acceptance of religious diversity and the diversity of followers within individual religions. While this is a Unitarian Universalist program, participants from other faith traditions or no current faith tradition are all welcome. Differences of experience and opinion will be respected, and participants will practice both connecting with others and disagreeing with respect and civility.

This program is free to members of KUUC; community members are requested to provide a nominal fee of $50 to cover materials and facilitator training. If this fee is a hardship, a waiver may be obtained by communicating with Rev. Michael F Hall, minister at KUUC or Jill Hall, Director of Religious Exploration.

Interested parents/guardians are invited to an informational meeting at KUUC, 69 Washington St, on Sunday, September 22 at 2:30pm, where you will be able to experience the curriculum, ask questions, and provide input about which religions you are hoping the group will explore. Attendance is not required but every participant must have a signed permission form indicating parental understanding of the time commitments and that there will be off-site trips to visit other faith communities. Please contact Jill Hall at with any questions, for more information including a schedule of meetings, or to let me know you are coming to the parent meeting.

Adults Needed

Offering the middle school curriculum Neighboring Faiths is part of fulfilling KUUC’s mission of creating compassionate community. In order to comply with our Safe Congregations guidelines this group needs an adult helper for each meeting that is at KUUC (15 total, from late September through early April), and adult drivers and chaperones for 4-6 off-site visits to houses of worship or other sacred sites. Opportunities include:

  • Volunteer as adult helper for the entire course or for 3-5 individual meetings.
  • Volunteer as IT support for the program; troubleshoot the church’s wifi/internet access and support participants using the chUUrchcraft app, either for the entire course or for specific meetings.
  • Volunteer as admin support – call/email other congregations to arrange for our visit or for representative to meet with us here at KUUC. This job could be shared among 2 or 3 people or taken on by one person.
  • Volunteer to drive and chaperone off-site visits.
  • Volunteer to lead one or more sessions, integrating the curriculums (Neighboring Faiths, Building Bridges and chUUrchcraft), leading activities, moderating discussions.

For more information, to talk about these opportunities, suggest other ways to help, or to sign up, please email Jill at