Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship


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      An Inclusive Religious Community
        Encouraging Lives of Purpose, Service, and Joy!

Lifelong Learning at Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship

The underlying philosophy of BUF’s Lifelong Learning program is that faith development is a journey that lasts a lifetime.  That which sustains us and binds us together as religious people expands and changes over time—and in fact, never stops.  Our program is intended to intentionally create a variety of spiritual learning opportunities for all members of BUF’s community—from the very old to the very young—from the lifelong Unitarian Universalists to the newcomers entering our doors for the first time—from the spiritually savvy to those of us fumbling in the dark.

People of all ages ask the fundamental questions of life in their own way. Our awe at the great forces of nature, the miracle of being alive and being able to think about it, wonder about birth and beginnings, the mystery of dreams and death, the pain of illness and empathy, the depth of love, cooperation and compassion, moral dilemmas in our choices, and the drive for personal achievement, survival—these fundamental experiences touch us all. The Lifelong Learning Program at the Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship provides a context for all of our members and friends to deliberately explore the meaning of life and the call to act with integrity in the world.

Crystal Neva, Director of Religious Education 

Crystal Neva, Director of Lifelong Learning

Crystal Neva is a lifelong UU and has been the Director of Lifelong Learning since September of 2007 as well as a member of BUF since 1999. She holds Bachelor of Arts and Master of Science Degrees in Psychology. Before she began working for BUF she held several clinical positions in the mental health field, worked as a psychology instructor at several community colleges in Washington, and served in the human resources field as a leadership trainer, recruiter and generalist. Crystal is thrilled to have settled as a religious professional as it feeds her love of deep philosophical inquiry and insatiable wonder about the human condition. She is passionate about learning more in the domain of religious education and continuously works to define and redefine her ever changing and deepening Unitarian Universalist faith. She shares her life with her partner, their daughter and they all dote on their two adorable little dogs!

Religious Education Committee

BUF's Children and Youth Programs are supported by a volunteer committee that meets monthly to oversee the big picture of programming and also organize events, coordinate activities and implement program initiatives. Program areas we oversee include: volunteer recruitment, calendaring and organizing celebrations and events such as the volunteer fall retreat, children's worship, children's music, social action opportunities for children, registration and supplies, policies, program vision and evaluation.

Many hands are needed to offer our inspiring programs; if you would like to volunteer in Lifelong Learning, contact Crystal Neva.

Lifelong Learning Program Vision

The Lifelong Learning Program at BUF provides a nurturing environment where children and adults work together to develop:

  • A community where children, youth, and adults feel love, acceptance, and belonging;
  • Opportunities for work, play, celebrations, and rituals;
  • A passion for putting Unitarian Universalist beliefs and principles into practice;
  • Joy, wonder and awe of the mystery, sacredness, and interconnectedness of all existence;
  • And a foundation for a personal, lifelong search for meaning.

All Lifelong Learning Programs at BUF promote leadership development, respectful communication, global and social awareness, creativity and fun!