Somewhat analogous to Confirmation and Bar/Bat Mitzvah, the Coming of Age program marks the transition from childhood to young adult. What is a youth? A youth is someone who is not yet an adult, but is not a child either. By participating in Coming of Age, we hope that the youth will:
Assume responsibility for their own physical, mental, and spiritual well-being;
Gain self-confidence and realize that their feelings are valid and that their opinions matter;
Expand their vision of the world by allowing them to encounter differing views, cultures, and life experiences;
Understand they have an important role in their family, their congregation, and the larger community;
Develop a personal value system;
Realize they are non-judgmentally accepted in our religious community, and that it is a safe place for them to be themselves;
Deepen their sense of their own UU identity.
The COA program partners each youth with an adult member of the congregation as a mentor. Over the course of several months (Setpember through June), the youth will go on retreats, together we explore life values through a series of evening workshops, field trips, service projects and activities. The program culminates with a weekend long "VisionQuest," where each youth develops a personal creed, followed by a Sunday morning service designed to honor their passage from childhood into adolescence.