ASIC Prison Ministry. In October, Ancient Sea Island Continuum began a new version of our ‘A Year and A Day’ class for a select group at the Allendale Correctional Institution, a Level 2 security prison. This class teaches the essentials of modern Paganism (distinguished from classical precedents as Neo-Paganism). The monthly course enables participants to not only learn the fundamentals and history of the constituent faiths, but also to respect the differences held by adherents of other spiritual beliefs. From now on, the two hour class will be taught on the third Friday of each month.
The core members of the Neo-Pagan worshipers chose the first group of attendees from the Allendale prison population for their commitment, experience, and/or attitude. The dozen class participants identified with faith-paths from Celtic Wicca to Nordic Asatru & Odinism to Brazilian Voudon. During the class, they shared their personal histories in earth-centered spirituality, ranging from one newcomer to two individuals with over three decades of experience. As word spreads within this population, more will likely attend the next class.
One of the best moments on Wednesday occurred while discussing the openness and diversity within Unitarian Universalism in general and at UUFB in particular. Flickers of amazement, and some recognition, spoke to a positive awareness that our faith was available and open, even to them. I felt a huge amount of pride representing our fellowship when I saw this look on their faces. The Board and membership of UUFB should be equally proud that their support enables ASIC to actively recognize and affirm the dignity of these troubled men, even as they are separated from society.
For more information, please contact Stephen Burton (firstname.lastname@example.org)