Welcome to the Liberal Religious Educators Association

The center of our work as religious educators is belief in the transformative power of educating through our Unitarian Universalist faith.

LREDA is an anti-racist, anti-oppression, welcoming, professional organization open to liberal religious educators and those supportive of religious education. LREDA promotes the religious growth and learning of people of all ages and advocates for and supports religious educators and the field of liberal religious education. 

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Welcome to the new LREDA.org!

For over 65 years, the Liberal Religious Educators Association—originally Unitarian Education Directors' Association (UEDA)—has worked to bring religious educators together for support, continued learning, and transformation. We welcome you to our newest tool for connection and support! LREDA members can login to visit a personal landing page, from where you can connect with colleagues in "My Community."  Here you can join or start a group, contribute to discussion the community forums, update your member profile, check up on upcoming events or past invoices, or view and search the Membership Directory.

Congregational lay leaders and staff can post employment opportunities, find resources outlining best practices, or purchase a LREDA membership list to aid your professional religious educator search.

Are you interested in supporting the work of LREDA as we continue to leap into the future? Learn more about opportunities to serve, strengthening our Endowment, and the amazing projects funded by LREDA grants.

LREDA logo graphic

We are grateful to the Unitarian Universalist Funding Program for their support in updating our digital infrastructure and helping connect LREDA members to their most precious resource: colleagues!

Fall Conference 2016

Join us at the Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa in San Diego, CA October 20-24, 2016.

Pre-conference workshops and meetings will be held October 17-20. LREDA Small will be Oct. 24 in the afternoon, and LARGE on Oct. 25.

Money, Death, Race and Sex: Bringing the Spiritual Dimension to Tough Topics.

Register for the Fall Conference HERE

LREDA Fall Conference is proud to present this year’s theme: Money, Death, Sex and Race: Bringing the Spiritual Dimension to Tough Topics.

In response to you, our members, and to the growing need within our communities and congregations, we are pleased to add the topic of race to our conference theme. Members of LREDA’s Diversity and Inclusion Team will work with a team of LREDA members, UUA staff and others who specialize in race relations.

This program is brought to you by the UUA Faith Development Office, directed by Jessica York. According to Jessica, “Our jobs as religious professionals would be easier if life were all flower bouquets and cotton candy. The children, youth, and adults we serve deal with harsh realities around challenging topics, and in their toughest times our ministry is most needed…

Often, we are called to support the children, youth and adults we serve through difficult times, as they explore areas of their lives not frequently acknowledged or talked about. Money, death, sex and race are topics that affect all our lives, yet many consider taboo to discuss in ‘polite company.’ As a religious professional, you will be more effective in helping constituents if you have taken the time to evaluate your own relationship to sensitive topics. At this Fall Conference, we will take the time to check in with our spirits and delve into how these four topics affect our spiritual lives and our ability to serve professionally.”

The goals for the program include:

• Gaining tools and practice skills that can be used for confronting “hard” topics (not just these four, but many others)

• Understanding how dealing with your own relationship to sensitive topics helps you as a religious professional

• Being able to name what is religious about race, money, death, and sex; how our relationship with each affects our spirituality

• Experiencing firsthand that you can talk about hard topics and not only survive, but thrive

• Modeling and experiencing spiritual exploration of sensitive topics as part of a group

• Exploring the intersectional ties of these topics with each other and with the various identities we hold.”

Friday’s program topic will be Money and the team will include: Pat Infante: (planning only), Sara Lewis, Elizabeth Terry and Laura Amabile.

Saturday’s program topic will be Death and the team will include: Rev. Judith Tomlinson, Rev. Natalie Fenimore and Joy Berry.

Sunday’s program topic will be Sex and the team will include: Melanie Davis, Adam Dyer, Jessica Laike, and Kathe Larrick.

The topic of Race and Relationships will be placed late each afternoon. This team will be posted at a later date.

Several members have asked about the increased cost for the training this year. Often when we offer trainings or workshops we are able to utilize our fabulous UUA staff who have their own funds to cover travel and lodging. This year we are honored to have the authors of the program who are not UUA staff and are coming across country to provide this training and so there is an increased cost for this program. We hope many of you will be able to sign up for this training and we hope to have many shared ministry teams of minister and religious educator attend. If for some reason you cannot come as a team from your church, be aware this is designed for a team and you can bring this material back to your team.

The pre-conference training or “interactive UU learning experiences“ (Religious Education Credentialing Program wording) does count for 15 hours of professional education and will be counted like a Renaissance Module toward credentialing.

Our guest Musician this year is Kellie Walker Hart. Kellie is the Minister of Music at Valley UU Congregation in Chandler, AZ and will be responsible for all music from Thursday night opening through Monday morning worship. We are very pleased she could join us this year.

Pre-Conference Training

Family Ministry Training 10/18 3-9PM, 10/19 9AM-9PM

The new Family Ministry training is designed for shared ministry teams with the goal of helping religious professionals and congregations deepen and expand their understanding of “family” and creating a culture within congregations that offers support and resources for families. The training will be led by the authors of the program, Leia Durland-Jones, Director of Faith Development and Rev. Erik Walker Wikstrom, Lead Minister, from the Thomas Jefferson Memorial Church UU in Charlottesville, VA. Register HERE.

NEW Religious Educator Training 10/20 9AM-3PM

New to this field of work? Learn some basic components of the job like; leadership skills, professional growth and support, leading with other staff and volunteers, volunteer management, compensation and time management, and programming for faith development. $115 Fee includes lunch. Registration option available within the Fall Conference registration form which follows. 

Post Conference Opportunities

LREDA LARGE Add-on Day 2016
October 25, 8:30am-2:30pm, $125 registration fee

Bias, Prejudice & Stereotypes – What “Colorblindness” Prevents Us from Seeing

This interactive workshop will help each participant take a look at the practices within their own congregation and identify ways in which they may reframe their work with volunteers and children. 

Our Presenter: Nancy Michael is the executive director of AMAZE, a nonprofit organization that has been working with adults to embed anti-bias education in schools, early childhood programs and faith-based programs since 1996. Full description HERE.

LREDA Small Post-Conference Add-On Program

Monday Oct. 24, 12:30 pm- 3 pm for small congregations of 150 members or less, lunch included. $70

An abbreviated version of the above LREDA Large program: 

Bias, Prejudice & Stereotypes – What “Colorblindness” Prevents Us from Seeing

This interactive workshop will help each participant take a look at the practices within their own congregation and identify ways in which they may reframe their work with volunteers and children.

IMPORTANT: If you still need to make a hotel reservation please contact Bea Ann Phillips: bphillips@bplanning.net. Remember, our meeting rooms are paid for by with our hotel reservations. Please book at the conference hotel if possible!

10-18 Tuesday       3:00 PM 9:00 PM Family Ministries Training 
10-19 Wednesday 9:00 AM 9:00 PM Family Ministries Training 
10-19 Thursday     9:00AM 5:00PM Good Offices Training (pre-approval required)
10-20 Thursday     4:30 PM 8:30 PM Conference
10-21 Friday          9:00 AM 4:45 PM Conference
                               8:00 PM 10:00 PM Potential Programming
10-22 Saturday      9:00 AM 5:30 PM Conference
10-23 Sunday        9:30 AM 3:30PM Conference
                               3:30 PM 5:45 PM FREE TIME
                               5:45 PM 9:00 PM Conference
10-24 Monday        8:30 AM 12:15 PM Conference
                              12:30 PM 3:00 PM Add-on LREDA Small 
10-25 Tuesday       8:30 AM 2:30 PM Add-on LREDA LARGE 

Breakfast and Lunches: Buffets (something for everyone)

Odyssey Dinner
Roulade of Chicken Breast stuffed with roasted peppers and cheese, asparagus, thyme roasted potatoes, balsamic reduction
GF/Cannot omit cheese upon request

Risotto Italian Risotto served with chanterelle mushrooms, English green peas, carrots, diced red and yellow bell peppers, diced zucchini and grilled eggplant in saffron broth 

We understand that many of you have food sensitivities and we will do our very best to accommodate as many of you as possible. However, we can never guarantee 100% that there is no cross-contamination in food preparation and therefore cannot be held liable for allergic reactions you may experience. We ask that you help us by making choices from the meals we provide that will best meet your needs, and bring your own snacks to supplement if needed.If you CANNOT eat this, please contact our conference planner, Bea Ann Phillips

If your situation changes and you must cancel your registration, please contact our administrator.

Register for the Fall Conference HERE