Escondido, CA
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Local Congregation expands campus for greater good

Chalice Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Escondido is undergoing a revamping construction project. The project is adding a new multipurpose building to the campus, expanding the parking lot, and improving other exterior amenities. The project began in January and the congregation is excited about anticipated completion in mid July.

“Our congregation has raised the necessary funds to bring this project to fruition. And we are grateful to the Unitarian Universalist Spirit Level Foundation for its support for our project,” said a spokesman for the congregation. 

The main focus of the new building will be to provide classroom space for religious education classes on Sundays. The congregation has classes in several age ranges, roughly corresponding to Elementary, Middle School, and High School. 

“Along with studying our seven Principles, our religious education program consists of exploring all the major religions of the world, including Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism and others. We encourage our children to think for themselves and decide what belief path, including Atheism, Agnosticism and Humanism they choose to adopt, and when they wish to adopt their chosen path,” said a spokesman for the congregation.

Chalice’s religious education programs include more than classes. On a Sunday you might find the preschoolers singing songs about kindness, the second graders engaging with a story about loss and bereavement, the fifth graders talking with a Muslim couple about Islam, or the seventh graders learning about responsibility in a lesson from Chalice’s progressive sexuality education program. Many programs incorporate social justice activities, worship opportunities, service trips, fellowship, and fun.

This construction project is step one in a long range plan, which in the future includes building a new sanctuary that will house 300 people. Chalice normally have services on Sundays at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. Currently services are at 1:30 p.m. on Sundays at Temple Adat Shalom in Poway.

Richard Korts, a member, said, “Chalice welcomes all people to its congregation. Whatever your race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation or religious inclination, you are welcome here!”

He added, “We are a Unitarian Universalist congregation, a house of love, hope, and dreams. We strive to be a beacon of liberal religion in Escondido and all of inland North County San Diego. 

“We are diverse in faith, ethnicity, history and spirituality, but aligned in our desire to practice our faith in tangible ways. We are people who believe in a God, people who don’t, and people who let the mystery be.”

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