We’re always hard at work planning new offerings, so stay tuned for more info! Now head over to Facebook and Instagram and follow us, so you’ll be sure never to miss a program.

Ongoing programs that invite participants most or all year include:

  • UU Parenting Circle – 1st Wednesdays, 6:30 – This circle will offer a time to gather and share in a community around the complex and rewarding role of parenting. This circle is not intended to be a parenting class, but rather a place to find companionship and spiritual support with fellow parents.In future months we’ll focus around a topic of interest to UU parents, and we’ll discuss ideas for those topics in this month’s inaugural Circle. All are welcome to drop in for any or all of our monthly circles. The whole family is invited to come for the Fellowship Dinner at 6pm; childcare is provided after dinner.
  • Personal Beliefs and Commitments – Sundays, 10:00 – 10:55 AM – a sharing and listening group open to all, preferred focus of ethical/spiritual nature. Regular attendance is not a condition for belonging.  Contact: Betty Bumgarner, Phone: 865-368-4856 E-Mail: bab53(at)netscape.net or Jamie Adcock, Phone: 689-5683  E-Mail: jamieladcock(at)gmail.com
  • Small Group Ministry – Groups of six to twelve people covenant to meet once or twice a month for structured and confidential sharing on topics that inspire reflection and spiritual growth. New members placed and fresh groups formed as needed.
  • Sunday Dialogues – Sundays, 9:45-10:45 AM – A team of volunteers shares responsibility for inviting ideas, choosing, scheduling and announcing program topics for Sunday morning presentations and discussions prior to worship services during the academic year. Participation is open to all (child care is available).
  • Conversations With God – Tuesdays,7:00-9:00 PM – This is an ongoing study of the Conversations with God books by Neale Donald Walsch, as well as similar topic material by other authors. Our exploration and discussion focuses on spirituality as it is experienced and played out in daily life. Drop-ins always welcome.  Contact: Galt Eaton, Phone 693-0585  E-Mail fourgaia(at)hotmail.com
  • Library – A team of volunteers keep the library neat and organized and track new additions as well as books that are checked out. The library is in need of a new librarian! If you are interested in serving in this role, please talk to a TVUUC staff member.
  • Science Fiction Club – 2nd Saturday of each month, Meets at the church for an entertaining, edifying and appetizing evening of movie-watching, conversation and pizza-eating.  All are welcome! Contact: Janette Kennedy, Phone: 865-256-4190 E-Mail: janettemkennedy(at)gmail.com
  • Classic Movie Night – Various Saturdays, 6:00 – A classic movie is shown in the Lizzie Crozier room to an audience of 20-30. Discussion follows. All are welcome.  Watch for announcements.  Contact: Debbie Ellis, Phone: 523-6696 E-Mail: dellis1111(at)bellsouth.net  .

Past Adult RE Offerings

Black Church/White Church

Facilitated by Rev. Chris Buice
Four Sessions: 7:00 pm on Tuesday nights November 7-28.

Martin Luther King Jr. called 11:00 on Sunday the most segregated hour in America. Why is that? Many black churches began as protests of white churches. Black members tired of segregated seating and unequal treatment walked out and started new congregations.

The purpose of this class will be to reflect on how we can become more effective at challenging bias, bigotry and racism through a clearer understanding of the relationship between black and white church traditions. The methodology of the class will be similar to the one in the youth Religious Education class Neighboring Faiths.

– On November 7 we will the Reverend Johnny Skinner of the Mount Zion Baptist Church will speak to us about the spirituality of Howard Thurman who was a mentor to Martin Luther King and founder of The Church for the Fellowship of All Peoples.
– On November 14 we will explore some of the similarities/differences in worship and social action between black and white church traditions in preparation for a church visit.
– For the November 21 class we will be going to a Thanksgiving service at Payne Avenue Baptist Church, 2714 Martin Luther King Blvd, sponsored by the Knoxville Interdenominational Christian Ministerial Alliance (KICMA) an organization of spiritual leaders from predominately African American churches.
– On November 28 we will have a panel of TVUUC members reflect on their spiritual journeys as African Americans in a predominately white denomination.

Faith Like A River: Themes from UU History

Facilitated by Catherine Farmer Loya
Six Sessions: Wednesdays, Nov. 1 – Dec. 13 (except Nov. 22), 6:45-8:45 pm in the Lizzie Crozier French Room

How was King John Sigismund of Transylvania convinced to convert to Unitarianism, thus becoming the only Unitarian monarch in all of history? How did a little chapel standing empty and a wind that didn’t change lead to our one true UU miracle story? Which Universalist minister, when narrowly missed by a rock thrown through a sanctuary window, responded that “this argument is solid and weighty, but it is neither rational nor convincing,” before continuing his sermon?

Faith Like a River explores the dynamic course of Unitarian, Universalist, and Unitarian Universalist history-the people, ideas, and movements that have shaped our faith heritage. It invites participants to place themselves into our history and consider its legacies. What do the stories of our history tell us about who we are today? What lessons do they offer to be lived into the future? Join us for an exploration of our UU religious tradition’s roots.

Screening and Discussion of: Requiem for the American Dream

Facilitated by Gene and Rosemary Burr

This is a two-session course in which participants will view and discuss the documentary by Noam Chomsky, titled “Requiem for the American Dream”.
Chomsky, one of the most noted intellectuals of our time, lectures at universities all over the world. In this film, through interviews filmed over four years, Chomsky details the principles that have brought us to the crossroads of historically unprecedented economic inequality, tracing a half-century of policies designed to favor the most wealthy at the expense of the majority. Chomsky provides insight into what may well be the lasting legacy of our time–the death of the middle class and the swan song of functioning democracy. Reminding us that while power ultimately belongs to the governed, it will be ours to exercise only if we actively choose it, “Requiem” should be viewed by all who maintain hope that economic justice may yet be achieved in our society.

Facilitated by Gene and Rosemary Burr. Gene and Rosemary joined TVUUC in 1969 and have been involved in the life of the church ever since, except for the years between 1990 and 2004, when they were commuting to Key West and Memphis. Gene is an architect-planner; Rosemary retired from a counseling psychology practice in 2011.




Practicing the Four Noble Truths with John Blackburn

The Four Noble Truths is the first teaching given by the Buddha following his awakening. By understanding and practicing these truths, one comes to the end of suffering.
The teachings known as the Four Noble Truths offer profound insights into the nature of suffering. Understanding and practicing these insights–in meditation and in daily life–is how we free ourselves from suffering. Each class includes lecture, meditation practice, and time for questions. Although these teachings come from Buddhism, the practices are secular in nature, so this course is appropriate for people of any, or no, spiritual tradition. After the class, a weekly follow-up meeting is offered at no cost to answer questions and help you maintain a regular practice.
There is a suggested donation of $60, which covers all four classes. This is a suggested donation, and participants are free to donate any amount, depending on their individual practice of generosity and their financial situation.
John Blackburn, Ph.D., has practiced meditation for over forty years, practicing intensively with teachers in the Vipassana, Zen, and Dzogchen traditions. He leads a local meditation group, the Knoxville Community of Mindfulness. He also serves as a hospice volunteer and as a member of the board of directors for Southern Dharma Retreat Center in Spring Creek, NC.

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