Life Learning: adult programs
2016 – 2017
In harmony with Unitarian Universalist principles and sources of inspiration, learning opportunities at Old Ship serve our community by encouraging spiritual growth and the free and responsible search for truth and meaning.
We gather in the parlor of the Parish House unless otherwise noted. Older youth are encouraged to attend. We ask participants to contribute $35 for the first class they attend each year (sliding scale according to need). There are no fees for drop-in or ongoing groups. Watch the newsletter and this web site for schedule changes. Contact information for course leaders is on last page.
Sunday Forums – Fall and Beyond
Watch the Old Ship newsletter and web site for notices of these Sunday noon forums, including newcomers’ orientations, social justice forums, sermon discussions, and more.
Emerson and Friends
Led by Ken Read-Brown
Four Wednesdays, Sept. 14 – Oct. 5, 7:00 p.m.
Ralph Waldo Emerson was the philosophical leader of the literary and religious movement known as transcendentalism – which had a formative influence on Unitarianism that is still felt today. We will be introduced primarily to Emerson, with nods to Margaret Fuler, Henry David Thoreau, Walt Whitman, and others. For information, contact Ken.
Facing Death with Life
Led by Rich Elliott and Ken Read-Brown
Six Wednesdays, Oct. 12 – Nov. 16, 7:00 p.m.
Despite the constant presence of death, dying, and grief in our lives, we mostly avoid speaking of it openly and directly. This class will facilitate a process of personal reflection, learning, and spiritual growth focused on topics relating to death and dying. We will invite participants to experience death and dying as a healthy part of life. Resources will include the book Being Mortal by Atul Gawande. For information, contact Rich or Ken.
What If? Led by Gwen Morgan
One Saturday workshop, Nov. 12, 3:00 – 5:00 p.m.
The What If? workbook is a comprehensive, easy-to-use guide to help get your affairs together in one convenient location. By filling out the workbook, you provide your loved ones with the necessary information they need should anything happen to you. The workshop will be led by the creator of the workbook, Gwen Morgan.
A New Look at the Gospel of Matthew
Led by Ken Read-Brown
Two Wednesdays, Dec. 7 and Dec. 14, 7:30 p.m.
These gatherings for conversation will be based on Thomas Moore’s fresh new translation of Matthew. The class will follow the weekly 6:30 p.m. vespers services that are a December tradition at Old Ship. For more information, contact Ken.
Mystical Dimensions of Islam
Led by Ken Read-Brown
Five Wednesdays, Jan. 11– Feb. 8, 1:00 and 7:00 p.m.
We will continue the exploration of Islam begun last year, this time focusing on the “mystical dimensions” of the Islam tradition, which largely means the tradition known as Sufism. The class will include exploration of the work of Rumi, Hafez, Ibn Arabi, and others. For more information, contact Ken.
Self-Discovery through Genealogy
Led by Ralph Brown
Five Wednesdays, Feb. 15 – March 15, 7:00 p.m.
Genealogy allows us to see ourselves as part of something larger than us – our multigenerational family. Genealogy is the study of all the families connected to each of us. As such, it is part of the Unitarian Universalist free and responsible search for truth and meaning. For more information, contact Ralph.
Building Your Own Theology
Led by Diane Elliott and Ken Read-Brown
Four Wednesdays, March 22 – April 12, 7:00 p.m.
Plus a closing Saturday session, time to be announced
Based on the assumption that everyone is their own theologian, this classic UU adult education program invites participants to develop their own personal credos and to grow in their ability to understand and articulate their own beliefs and values. For more information, contact Diane or Ken.
Led by Elizabeth Torrey and Ken Read-Brown
Five Wednesdays, April 19 – May 17, 1:00 and 7:00 p.m.
Our annual spring poetry class, held during National Poetry month, will explore poetry that strengthens our love of the natural world and that addresses indirectly or directly environmental issues, including climate change.
Spring poetry this year will also include a special evening of poetry, reflection, and conversation with Rev. Dr. Gordon Postill, chaplain of Old Colony Hospice in Randolph, Saturday, April 29, at 7:00 p.m. For information, contact Elizabeth Torrey or Ken.
2016 – 2017 Seasonal Groups and Gatherings
Crossing Time Poetry Circles
At the turning of each season; see newsletter for dates
We begin our 20th year! Bring and read or speak a favorite poem – an opportunity to share and perhaps deepen our appreciation of poetry, and reinforce our connection with the natural cycles of life. For information, contact Elizabeth Torrey.
So You Want to Meditate
Led by Ken Read-Brown
Fall, winter, spring Saturdays, 3:00-5:00, Oct. 15, Jan. 21, May 13
Whether you are a long time meditator or wish to begin, these three gatherings will offer basic instruction in mindfulness meditation and in Eknath Easwaran’s passage meditation. There will be time for questions and conversation, and time to meditate. For information, contact Ken.
2016 – 2017 Ongoing Groups and Gatherings
The Way of the Bodhisattva
First and third Sunday mornings, 8:30 a.m.
Half an hour of sitting meditation, followed by an hour of conversation based on an ancient or contemporary Buddhist text. As grounding for our conversation, we are currently using the book When Things Fall Apart by the American Buddhist teacher Pema Chodron. Newcomers warmly welcomed to our gatherings – no previous experience with Buddhism needed. For information, contact Ken.
Second Sunday mornings, 8:30 a.m., except for July and August.
An ongoing opportunity for men to get together in a safe, nurturing environment where we can speak freely and listen deeply to each other. We do this as a form of spiritual practice. We also seek to have fun together and rekindle our playful souls. For information, contact Ralph Brown or Rich Elliott.
Old Ship Book Group
Second Mondays, 1:00 and 7:00 p.m., except for July and August
Each month the group discusses a previously chosen book, fiction or non-fiction, historical or contemporary, generally around an issue of social concern. All are welcome, whether every month or from time to time. Each month’s book title will be highlighted in advance in the newsletter. Contacts are Florence Noonan and Nina Price.
Monday evenings, 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.
All are welcome to this weekly gathering to practice Buddhist meditation in community. Each evening includes sitting and walking meditation, with a few chants. For information contact Eric Cornetta.
Living By Heart
First Monday evenings, 7:00 p.m., at Elizabeth Torrey’s, 34 Ship St., Hingham
A group that uses the memorization of poetry as a form of meditation. Poetry, good company, laughter too – powerfully good medicine! For more information, contact Elizabeth Torrey. The current group is full, but speak to Elizabeth if interested.
First Tuesday evenings, 7:30 p.m.
Sharing of songs, stories, poems, and an old-fashioned good time. Bring an instrument if you have one or just bring yourself to listen and maybe sing along.
Old Ship Sewing Circle
Every other Wednesday afternoon, 1:00 p.m.
We hope you will join us for the newly revised sewing circle, coordinated by Diane Elliott. We are sewing, knitting and crocheting unusual crafts to sell at Old Ship’s December Merrie Market. Join us in community, as we gather every other week in the Parish House Parlor. No experience necessary. For information, contact Diane.
Thursday mornings, 5:30 – 6:30 a.m.
Sitting and walking meditation, along with a few chants, for early risers. For information, contact Eric Cornetta.
Sacred Texts Meditation Group
Led by Ken Read-Brown
Second and fourth Thursday afternoons, 4:00 – 5:30 p.m.
Each gathering includes time for meditation and conversation based on ancient scriptures. Most recently the group has read the Upanishads and Bhagavad Gita; in the coming year the focus will be on the early Buddhist text, the Dhammapada as translated by Eknath Easwaran; with another Easwaran book, an anthology of sacred texts titled God Makes the Rivers to Flow, as a secondary resource. Newcomers are warmly welcomed. For more information, contact Ken.
How to contact leaders
Ralph Brown firstname.lastname@example.org
Eric Cornetta email@example.com
Diane Elliott firstname.lastname@example.org
Rich Elliott Richelliott56@gmail.com
Florence Noonan email@example.com
Nina Price firstname.lastname@example.org
Elizabeth Torrey email@example.com
Ken Read-Brown firstname.lastname@example.org
Have an idea… for a class, workshop, or gathering you’d like to see or lead at Old Ship? Contact the office or a member of the Life Learning Committee: Ralph Brown, Rich Elliott, Brian Hurley, Claire Petrie, Elizabeth Torrey , Ken Read-Brown, and Beverly Tricco, and we will help you make it happen!