Adult Program

Sunday Mornings at 9:30-10:45 in the Hearth Room;  drop-ins are welcome.
First Sunday Contemporary Issues: Topics vary 

All Other Sundays – Morning Discussion Class:
Being Human: Life Lessons from the Frontiers of Science

Understanding our humanity—the very essence of who we are and how we live our lives—is one of the deepest mysteries and biggest challenges in modern science. As we learn more about the mechanisms of human behavior through evolutionary biology, neuroscience, anthropology, psychology, sociology, and other related fields, we’re discovering just how intriguing the human species is. And while scientists are continually uncovering deep similarities between our behavior and that of other animals, they’re also finding a wealth of insights into everything that makes us unique from any other species on Earth. (12 Sunday video lectures)


Open Campus

Expanding Knowledge, Exploring Ideas, Enriching Lives

Winter 2018 Open Campus Schedule
Offered by the ARE (Adult Religious Exploration) Committee

What’s fun, fascinating – and FREE?  Open Campus Classes — that’s what.  The Louisville community is encouraged to join the Thomas Jefferson crew for various classes being held during the period January 31 through March 22.  A special welcome is extended to young adults, older teens and parents — just arrange ahead of time if child care is needed. 

 Check out the eight weeks of classes and times below.  Be sure to sign up during the coffee hour at the ARE table or by contacting Alan Godsave at agodsave1@gmail.comBut before classes even start, we will have a terrific kickoff dinner and program with a theme of “Community Connections.”

Dinner Kick off:  January 24     Everyone is invited

6:00-7:00 pm – Dinner will feature BBQ and will include pulled pork, chicken, and vegetarian options, with vegetables, slaw and dessert.  Our chef will be Clarence Yancey, who has prepared meals for hundreds while helping churches, social organizations and politicians.

7:00-7:30 pm – Program.  James Linton and Margaret Harris, founders of Community Connections (which is working to erase the imaginary divide between West and East Louisville residents), will provide a brief overview of their work. Short introductions to the classes that will be offered during Open Campus will follow.

Reservations for the dinner (a discounted price of $5 per adult, children free) may be made at the ARE table during Coffee hour or sent to ARE c/o Debbie Horvay at TJUC by Sunday January 21st. Prepaying is advised as only 45 reservations from TJ and 15 from Community Connections are available. If space is available on the 24th, the price will be $10 per adult.

Open Campus Schedule:  January 31-March 22
     5:30-6:30 Wednesday Dinner at Shiraz – Order your dinner and join the group at reserved tables.
6:30-7:00 Wednesday Vespers, led by Elwood Sturtevant, Open to everyone
7:00-8:30 Wednesday and Thursday Evening Classes (sign-up is requested to help plan classroom
spaces and assist with facilitator-participants communication).

  • Living our Mission:  Finding your Passion and Taking Action for Social Justice.  Rus Funk and others, Facilitators.  Wednesday evenings.  Jan 31, Feb 7, 14, 21, 28, Mar 7, 14, 21
  • About HumanismBob Schulz, Joe Brennan, Glenn Glasgow and Avery Kolers, Facilitators.  Wednesday evenings.  Feb 7, 14, 21, 28, Mar 7
  • Seeing Systems:  Peace, Justice & Sustainability.  Elwood Sturtevant, Facilitator.  Thursday evenings.  Feb 8, 15, 22, Mar 1, 8, 15
  • Artists as Social Activists.  Lori Sargent, Arlene Tuttle and Diana DeVaughn, Facilitators.  Wednesday evenings.  Mar 7, 14, 21

Adult RE Sunday Morning Discussion Class, 9:30-10:45 in the Hearth Room   Drop-ins are welcome.

  •     Current Issues Discussion:  Topics vary.
  •     Other Sundays during the month:  Video and discussion (currently “Being Human: Life Lessons from the Frontiers of Science” – 12 Sunday video lectures and discussions)

Weather Policy: If Jefferson County school is canceled due to weather conditions, please see the TJ website for information about a possible cancelation of the Open Campus dinner or classes.

More detailed descriptions of Open Campus classes follow:

Living Our Mission: 

Finding Your Passion and Taking Action for Social Justice

Facilitators:  Rus Funk and others
Eight Sessions – Wednesday evenings 7:00 – 8:30 pm

Jan 31, Feb 7, 14, 21, 28, Mar 7, 14, 21


This course provides an introduction to Social Justice Activism and Engagement.  Using an organizational structure created by TJUC’s Social Justice Committee (SJC) as a framework, this course will invite participants to examine social justice and what it means to be an ally, so that we can all be more proactive in our efforts to promote social justice.  Included in this course will be processes and content that will support participant’s passion for pursuing social justice, demystify social justice and activism, and empower them to take meaningful action.  Class Schedule:

Jan. 31 – Introduction.  A welcoming and introduction to the class.  An overview of social justice theory and practice, and tying social justice theory and activism to UU core principles.

Feb 7 – Overview of Ally theory and practice & Intersectionality.  Understanding what it means to be and act in “alliance” with the folks who are most affected by a form of oppression, dominance and violence.  This class will also introduce folks to some key principles of intersectional theory and practice.

Feb 14 – Racial Justice.  An overview of racism as it currently is manifest and a framework for understanding racial justice, including ways that participants can join effort to pursue racial justice.

Feb 21 – Immigrant Rights.  An overview of current immigrant rights issues and a framework for understanding immigrant rights, including ways that participants can join effort to pursue racial justice.

Feb 28 – Reproductive Justice.  Defining what is meant by reproductive justice, including distinguishing reproductive justice from reproductive rights, current issues affecting and countering reproductive justice and what is being done to pursue and ensure reproductive justice.

March 7 – LGBTQI Rights.  Defining the current state and expressions of homophobia, biphobia and transphobia, the current threats to LGBTQI Rights in Kentucky and locally, and what is being done to ensure and expand the rights of LGBTQI people.

March 14 –A Justice Response to Gun Violence.  View and discuss video provided by “Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense.” 

March 21 – Tying it all Together.  Referring to intersectional theory as introduced in Session 2, and connecting this to a human rights framework, this session will explore how these various justice movements, while distinct, are also interconnected. 



Seeing Systems: Peace, Justice & Sustainability

Facilitator:  Elwood Sturtevant
Six Sessions – Thursday evenings – 7:00 – 8:30 pm

Feb 8, 15, 22, Mar 1, 8, 15

Our UU 7th Principle, “Respect for the interdependent web of all existence …” presupposes that all things are connected.  This discussion class, from the Northwest Earth Institute (NWEI), makes the same assumption and is intended both to help us see this interconnection as our reality and to help us see how we can make positive change in such a word.  The ability to see “systems” is important not just in order to understand the environment, but connects to matters of justice as well. 

The course is based on the Seeing Systems book which costs $28, though an attempt is being made to arrange for a discount.  Anyone wishing to attend who cannot afford their own copy of the reader will have one provided.

The course’s description states:
How does one mold such complex principles as peace, justice and sustainability into a coherent story? The difficulty reflects the media’s broader struggle to convey how these themes are mutually linked. Seeing Systems: Peace, Justice and Sustainability connects the dots between three of society’s most pressing challenges and helps participants find pathways for powerful change in our everyday lives.

… Together, participants expand their people power and begin to make a real difference for good.

“NWEI’s latest course introduces values that underlie, visions that spur, and practical actions we can take to

achieve a more peaceful, just and sustainable world.”

  • Dave Oakes, Center for Ecological Living and Learning


About Humanism

Facilitators:  Bob Schulz, Joe Brennan, Glenn Glasgow and Avery Kolers

Five Sessions – Wednesday evenings – 7:00 -8:30 pm

Feb 7, 14, 21, 28, Mar 7

Humanism is both a philosophy and a worldview.  It emphasizes the inherent value and worth of human beings, individually and collectively, and focuses on the primary roles of critical thinking and  evidence over acceptance of religious dogma or the supernatural.  Each of the five sessions in this class will address humanism from a different perspective or paradigm and will be led by a different presenter.  All “faculty members” hold advanced degrees.  Class schedule: 

Feb 7 – Introduction to Humanism – Bob Schulz presenting

Feb 14 – Theism and Humanism – Joe Brennan presenting

Feb 21 – Deism and Humanism – Glenn Glasgow presenting

Feb 28 – Science and Humanism – Anthony Grayling (video)

Mar 7 – Philosophy and Humanism – Avery Kolers (U of L) presenting


Artists as Social Activists
Facilitators:  Lori Sargent, Arlene Tuttle and Diana DeVaughn
3 sessions – Wednesday evenings – 7:00-8:00 pm
Mar 7, 14, 21

Throughout history, artists have reacted to their environments, often creating artwork about the social and environmental conditions they observe.  Sometimes these artworks have been influential, affecting not only the viewers of their artwork, but the politics of their times.  Two examples you may recognize are Guernica, a mural-sized oil painting by Spanish artist Pablo Picasso depicting the horrors or war, completed by June 1937, and the Aids Memorial Quilt, 1985-present, containing more than 48,000 individual 3-by-6-foot memorial panels created by friends, lovers and family members.
During this class, we will examine several visual artworks each evening, selected from different times, various artists, and multiple media. We’ll talk about our interpretations, and what the artist may have intended. This class is open to anyone who is curious about visual artwork, whether or not they have ever created their own work.