Unitarian Universalist congregations are often notable for the breadth and the quality of adult programming they provide.  But if these classes and practice groups can be faulted for any shortcoming it is probably this: lack of depth and little opportunity for learners to fully assimilate and build upon the insights and experiences they’ve received.  Quest, the First Unitarian Society of Madison’s two-year spiritual deepening curriculum, addresses this problem by providing a balanced curriculum of retreats, tutorials in spiritual practice, classes and small “integration groups.”

I participated in the early development of Quest and served as a mentor, spiritual practice guide and presenter for the first group of participants. Many graduates of the program subsequently moved on to assume leadership positions at First Unitarian Society, or to facilitate classes in spiritual development for other adults in our congregation. Quest provided them with inspiration, a strong motivation to serve and greater confidence in their abilities.  Since then, the curriculum has been significantly refined and become, I believe, one of the best of its kind that Unitarian Universalism has to offer.

The Rev. Dr. Michael A. Schuler
Senior Minister, First Unitarian Society of Madison

Heightened awareness

In 2009, I was offered the special privilege to serve on the Quest steering committee at First Unitarian Society. This has been a unique opportunity to experience Quest as a non-participant, and to learn from some of the program’s planners, authors, facilitators, mentors and participants. These individuals, along with the remarkable Quest curriculum – that is rich with resources, contemplative and spiritual exercises, and much more  – have deepened my spiritual journey, strengthened a commitment to my insight meditation practice, heightened my awareness and interest in other spiritual practices, and broadened connections to my faith community. Now others, like me, will have the same opportunity.

Christine Einerson, Co-Chair of the Quest steering committee

  • Photo by Joyce Carey
  • Photo by Lorna Aaronson
  • Water Color by Ann Schaffer
  • Photo by Lorna Aaronson
  • Photo by Joyce Carey
  • Photo by Harry Carnes
  • Water Color by Ann Schaffer

"Let the beauty we love be what we do. There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground."  –  Rumi