At Prairie, we learn Unitarian Universalist spiritual practice through our worship, classes, small groups, and justice work. Most of our meetings begin with reading our Touchstones, developed from Quaker Parker Palmer’s Courage and Renewal work. Almost every summer we have a spiritual retreat at the beautiful Franciscan Center on the north side of Colorado Springs.

Touchstones

  • Come to the work with all of ourselves; be present as fully as possible
  • Extend and receive welcome
  • Believe that it’s possible to emerge refreshed, surprised, and less
  • burdened than when we came
  • There is always invitation, never invasion; always opportunity, never demand
  • No fixing, no advice giving, no correcting one another
  • When the going gets rough, turn to wonder
  • Create space for the spirit of joy, laughter and play
  • Speak your truth in ways that respect other peoples’ truth
  • Trust and learn from the silence
  • Observe confidentiality
  • Let the beauty we love be what we do

 

Tenets of Accompanying for Social Change

At Prairie UU, we embrace social justice work as a spiritual practice. We believe that engaging social change efforts address both our need to grow spiritually in community and the call to transform ourselves and the world. Drawing on the small-group ministry model of the UUA (https://www.uua.org/small-group), we recite and practice the tenets of accompaniment when appropriate:

  1. Being in communion with traditionally marginalized people (showing up), and staying in the relationships for the long haul.
  2. Remembering that the liberation of everyone and everything is inherently connected, and together, we are on a journey toward it.
  3. Walking together as equals with marginalized people in a loving, respectful, trusting relationship.
  4. Struggling together.
  5. Contemplating the gifts you are going to receive when accompanying, instead of how you will give, help, teach, tell, or fix.
  6. Unlearning your patterns of dominance like taking charge, leading, making decisions, etc.
  7. Asking and listening. (The practice becomes: “I don’t know anything. I’m educated, but really don’t know what I’m doing here. Would you be willing to help me?”)
  8. Moving beyond asking to acting.
  9. Getting out of your comfort zone (materially, emotionally, and physically).
  10. Disrupting the systems and structures of oppression – in community with the marginalized, following their leadership.

Learn more about Prairie’s justice efforts. Justice Overview