Adult Education & Faith Formation

Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?
-Mary Oliver, The Summer Day

Christian discipleship is a life-long answer to the poet Mary Oliver’s question: “What will you do with your one wild and precious life?” Discipleship is also a life-long journey that is shaped by the call “to love God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength and to love your neighbor as yourself.”

At United, we offer many ways to take that journey – through Sunday morning forums, retreats, study series, service and education trips, and study groups. We invite you to join in these opportunities to learn more about the Christian faith, God’s call in your life, and the community and world around us.




Women’s Study Group
Wednesdays, October 2 and 19, 10:00 AM

All women interested in stimulating discussion, lots of good humor, and comfortable sharing are encouraged to come the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays of each month. In October, we read David Brooks’ The Second Mountain. (Ann Barker, 505-670-3383,


Adult Forums – 9:45 Sunday Mornings
Childcare Provided


Eco-Anxiety: Dealing with the Mental Health Impact of Climate Change
Sunday, October 27 – 9:45 AM

 Psychiatrists (and United members) Dr. Mary Hasbah Roessel and Dr. Joe Neidhardt offer insight into the toll that climate change and other environmental issues take on our emotional and mental well-being. Both of them have been deeply involved in mental health work and also environmental advocacy for a number of years.

Love Makes a Family—and a Marriage
Sunday, November 3 – 9:45 AM

We continue United’s “Journey to Equality” with an exploration of United’s advocacy for same-gender marriage rights (including the 100+ weddings celebrated the year after New Mexico legalized “gay marriage”). We’ll also explore the multi-faceted roles of LGBTQ families in the United community and our ministry with youth and children.

Responding to the Climate Emergency: Suggested Spiritual Practices
Sunday, November 10 – 9:45 AM

Special guest Rev. Jim Antal, author of Climate Church, Climate World and United Church of Christ minister, explores the spiritual practices we need to build a clean, safe, healthy and viable future. How can the church help individuals and communities become more resilient and able to make the needed transitions in a climatechanged world? How can we respond with gratitude and hope as God calls us to devote skills, assets and time to make the changes science says we must and technology says we can? Such change is extraordinarily difficult and absolutely essential.

When the Holidays Are Different
Sunday, November 17 – 9:45 AM

For all its joy and celebration, the holiday season can be difficult when we’ve experienced major change— divorce, moving, death, job changes, etc. You’re invited to join in this pastoral conversation, that also offers resources and ideas for dealing with change and loss, especially at holiday times. All welcome.

Keeping Christmas While Keeping Your Sanity
Sunday, November 24 – 9:45 AM

What are ways to reduce the stress of the holiday season and increase your and your children’s understanding of what Christmas is really about?

Advent’s Lessons for Christmas
Sunday, December 1 – 9:45 AM

How can the spiritual practices of Advent (lighting the purple candles, reading the Advent promises, taking time to “ponder” as Mary did) help us—and our children—truly prepare for the coming of Christ’s light?


In All Our Living: Incorporating Our Personal Values To Make Health Care Decisions (including end-of-life)

Four weeks—starting Oct. 23/24 through Nov. 13/14 Weds. (5:15 to 6:45 pm) or Thurs. (12:00 noon to 1:30 pm). Led by Nurse Ethicist Caroline Burnett, RN, Sc.D. at United Church of Santa Fe. All welcome—register by Friday, Oct. 18. For info, contact Dr. Burnett (820-0902) or Rev. Talitha Arnold (988-3295)


The Power of Gratitude – Fall Retreat Saturday, Nov. 9 – 8:30 am to 12:00 noon

Giving thanks can break powerlessness and overcome despair—and it’s catching. Take Saturday morning, Nov. 9, to reflect on your “thanksgivings” and how they strengthen your life. We’ll use the Psalms to guide our remembrances. Reflection, worship, silence, and solitude—a great way to begin the Thanksgiving season. (Childcare if needed.) Sign up at church or email unitedchurchsf (Talitha Arnold, 988-3295) All welcome!


The Supreme Court and Human Rights
Wednesday, Nov. 20 (5:30 – 7:00 pm)

Recently the US Supreme Court heard several cases concerning the rights of LGBTQ and DACA persons. United members Pam Hyde, Bill Hultquist, and Dusty Pruitt share information on these cases and their possible impact and lead a conversation about the church’s role in addressing the potential rollback of human rights. All welcome.


Women’s Study Group
Wednesday, Nov. 6 (10:00 am)

All women interested in lots of good humor, comfortable sharing, and stimulating discussion are encouraged to come. Due to the holiday there will be one meeting in November. We finish David Brooks’ The Second Mountain. (Ann Barker, 670-3383)


Men of Faith (and Doubt): Men’s Study Group
November/December Tues. (8:00 am) or Weds. (5:30)

All United men are invited to join in a short-term (through mid-December) study and exploration group on some Biblical men. The stories of Jacob, Joseph and his brothers, Joseph the father of Jesus, Moses, or Elijah provide an opportunity not only to learn about the past, but also to engage important themes of men’s lives now—e.g., making hard decisions, living in relationships and friendships, being a father (or being fathered). Interested? Please sign up or call the church (988- 3295). It’s okay if you can only make one or two sessions.


Adult Education/Faith Formation Team Gearing Up!

Many thanks to the new Adult Education Team (Diane Darby, Mary Harvey, Marcom and April Herren). If you have ideas for programs or series this year, either in the Sunday Forums or mid-week, please let them know.


Other Opportunities

  • Study Groups, such as The Wednesday Women’s Study Group (Ann Barker,
  • United Artists – Thursdays at 1:00 p.m. (Shirley Clark, 505-660-3161).
  • Study Series offered seasonally and throughout the year.
  • Immersion Trips – to learn about our neighbors across the US/Mexico border or in Navajoland.

Any of the above sound interesting? Then check out the various study series offered in a variety of formats – weekly sessions, 3-day studies, one-time offerings. Some are led by the pastor, others by lay members, still others feature guest speakers. Join in!

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