Members work as a personal support team with Concordance Academy offering the country’s first set of integrated, holistic and evidence-informed services for individuals returning to society from prison. These re-entry services begin six months pre-release, with the Academy assessing each enrollee – academically, cognitively and socially – to create a customized “life plan” for each individual. Upon release, participants engage in a year-long integrated program that includes: behavioral health and wellness, education and employment, and community and life skills.
Involved in many different activities, the group seeks to raise our own and our community's awareness of racial injustice and to work actively against it. Activities include a Witnessing Whiteness group, monthly Black Lives Matter vigils, partnering with Metropolitan Congregations United, forming a Policing Task Force to establish relationships with the Ladue Police Department, and investigating the department's current practices.
Participate in Missouri’s Adopt-a-Highway program, picking up trash on Lindbergh Blvd. from Monsanto Dr. to Old Olive Street Rd. Action occurs twice a year.
Collect paperback books, package and ship them to service personnel for the holiday season.
Community volunteers develop and enjoy gratifying new relationships with aging seniors who still have much to contribute to the lives of others. This is an outside program in which we participate.
Promotes education and development of ethical values in Uganda by providing scholarships to students, primarily girls, in humanist secondary schools. Additional funds meet general needs of the schools and students.
Groups collect warm clothes and blankets, cook food, and distribute items to the St. Louis homeless when temperatures fall below 20 degrees. On these nights Winter Outreach also opens several emergency shelters that provide meals, beds, showers, Metro passes and companionship to guests.
Welcome new members by helping them meet people and make connections. The Ambassadors host dinner parties in their homes to introduce new members to current Society members. The Ambassadors take turns hosting, so the frequency of their commitment depends on the number of Ambassadors.
Practices weekly and performs approximately once a month at Sunday Platforms and during seasonal festivals. New members are always welcome.
An email list to inform members about issues of clean energy and sustainability, and be notified of opportunities to sign online petitions. We encourage participation by posting upcoming community events on the bulletin board.
Small groups of Society members and friends meet monthly to share personal thoughts and experiences, centered on a monthly theme. Each group also does a one-time ethical action activity. Ethical Circles are great ways to get to know new people, to get to know acquaintances on a deeper level, and perhaps to get to know yourself better.
Small, informal potluck dinners that occur four weekends a year in members’ homes. The purpose of these dinners is to get to know one another and build the Ethical Society community. Enjoy an evening of good food and good people in an intimate, home setting.
Monthly bike rides of generally easy difficulty focus on enjoying the trails in the area and each other’s company.
Monthly potluck group for those who wish to explore cooking and enjoying meatless cuisine. The group meets at 6:30 p.m. on the first Friday of each month at members’ homes to share dinner, recipes, and good times.
Laughter 'Yoga' is a movement-based practice that is healthy, a bit zany and childlike, and includes deep breathing, light stretching and running about as you follow the leaders in improvisational 'exercises' such as pretending to be a lifesize jack-in-the-box or playing human bumper cars, laughing at yourself in your invisible hand mirror or pretending to call your funny friend on your cellphone. Not just frivolous fun, the practice boosts immunity, lifts moods, reduces stress, and strengthens abdominal muscles. Also includes a guided relaxation exercise to calm and center ourselves. Monday nights, from 6:30 -7:30 pm. Drop-in attendance and free, but donations are welcome for use of the facility.
Offers a wide range of topics including science and engineering, literature, politics, economics, health, and social issues. Features internal and external speakers. Serves the educational and social interests of its members. It runs from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon each Tuesday.
Become intentionally aware of what is going on in and around you. This powerful tool helps deal with stress, promotes physical and mental well-being, and awakens the senses to living ethically in the present moment. Meet weekly to merge the mindfulness meditation techniques of Thich Nhat Hanh and the philosophy of Felix Adler to facilitate an understanding of self so as to act in ways to elicit the best in others and therefore in yourself.
A national self-help network, which meets weekly, for people who have made the healthy decision to address a drinking problem. Open to members and non-members. Moderated by an Ethical Society member.
A monthly conversation among parents. Participants request discussion topics that address the interests and concerns of families of infants through teens. Topics, moderators, and guest presenters vary each month and are announced on our SEEK Facebook pages. Families of all kinds are welcome to participate. First Sunday of the month from 10-11am.
Photographers of all skill levels who get together monthly to exchange ideas and photos.
Members select and read science fiction (without getting into arguments about what exactly that means) books around 300 pages in length and available in paperback. Monthly meetings begin with a go-round for people to introduce themselves and share a question or topic the book brought up for them. We use these questions to guide the rest of the discussion.
Have you ever wanted to travel somewhere exciting, but perhaps it is too far, too expensive, or the timing isn’t right? Maybe you’re ready to travel, and learning about someone else’s experience can help you decide where to go. Maybe you’re an armchair traveler or maybe you just enjoy getting together with fellow Society members. Regardless of what you are seeking, the Virtual Travel Club might be for you. Five meetings are scheduled during the year, with one presentation per meeting. You’ll see videos and slides of the traveler’s experience and get a chance to ask questions.
20 to 40-ish year-old members and visitors gather for various social activities. Activities have included trivia nights, camping, bowling, hiking, game nights, movie nights, going out to dinner, going to see a play, Dining Out for Life, St. Louis Foodbank volunteer days, St. Louis Effort for AIDS volunteer evenings, and more!
Discussions of Ethical Society beliefs and practices. This monthly series is for newcomers and long-time members alike; through presentation and discussion, we explore the history, ideas, and current interests of the Ethical Society community. Often based on the Sunday Platform monthly theme.
Using the Great Books Foundation materials, we discuss enduring literature, advance social and civic engagement, and help people of all ages think critically about their own lives and the world we share. Meeting one evening each month from September to May. Participation is open to members and non-members.
Great Decisions is America’s largest discussion program on world affairs. Over 8 consecutive weeks the program provides background information and policy options for the eight most critical issues facing America each year and serves as the focal text for discussion groups across the country. Participation is open to members and non-members.
Four International Relations Lectures are held each year co-sponsored by the Society’s Tuesday Women’s Association and the American Association of University Women. These monthly lectures, January – April, are open to the broader community.
Join member Roy Overmann, Professor of International Relations, Webster U, and other Ethical Society members in discussing the major international issues of the day. There will be special emphasis on American foreign policy. Participate or just listen to the discussion.
Learn about local/native plants, a low-maintenance option for those who wish to be good stewards and protect our wildlife and local ecosystem, as well as those who just want to enjoy beautiful plants, animals and insects in their natural setting.
Five Elements, a short, easy-to-learn form taught by Chungiang Al Huang (www.livingtao.org), author of the book Embrace Tiger, Return to Mountain—the title refers to two of the movements in the form; the form embodies Taoist principles leading to spontaneous growth and change. The Five Elements are perfect for beginners or more experienced folks.
Essentially a free college philosophy course. Handouts are provided before each session, so there is no need for participants to prepare.
This YWCA program educates and raises awareness of racial justice and equity issues in members of the local St. Louis community. Participants meet for 9 sessions using the book Witnessing Whiteness: The Need to Talk About Race and How to Do It (2nd edition) by Shelly Tochluk.
Begin with a deep breath. Stretch, strengthen, breathe and add a little meditation. End with a smile. Open levels class. Members and non-members welcome. All ages welcome. Monday, 5:00pm, $10 per class suggested.
Current topical presentations with audience questions and discussion in an informal setting. Facilitators share planning for presenters and topics.
Suggests and advises on projects that have an aesthetic impact on the building.
Each month a different local artist displays their work on the main halls of the Society. Artists are exposed to the many people that attend our events. The community meets each artist at receptions held in the Foyer. The art enhances the appearance of our building for our members and visitors. Any sales generate a 10% commission for the Society. Task Force members help select local artists and coordinate the exhibits.
Members help recommend, set up, and operate the Society’s audio visual equipment for various events.
Focus on the long-term mission and well-being of the Congregation, not on administrative detail. Responsible for the overall direction of the Society. They represent and lead the Congregation in determining and monitoring appropriate organizational performance. Trustees serve three–year terms.
Advises and assists the Facility Coordinator on maintenance and enhancement of the building and grounds.
Facilitate a two–year program which carries our 7th and 8th graders from childhood into adulthood. In the Christian church this is known as confirmation while in the Jewish tradition, it's the bar/bat mitzvah. Youth, with the help of their adult facilitators and families, gather to broaden their minds, explore other religions, share deep thoughts, and examine their own ethical identities.
Support members who are ill or experiencing tough times. Visit, call, send cards, and provide assistance.
Develop and test procedures for managing emergencies at the Society.
Selects an individual or group in the St. Louis community that has provided courageous and dedicated service to maintaining the rights and dignity of their fellow human beings in some aspect of life - religious, social, political, economic, medical, educational, ecological, recreational, or artistic. This has been awarded annually since 1975.
Develop and display an evolution exhibit at the Society to support our reliance on science.
Responsible for all aspects of managing and protecting the financial resources of the Society. This committee is chaired by the Ethical Society Treasurer.
Greeting teams consist of four to five greeters each Sunday. Greeters aim to provide a welcoming presence, especially for visitors, by giving directions, answering questions, and mostly by being approachable, friendly people. Greeters are encouraged to stay after Platform to give a smile and words of affirmation to individuals as they leave the Society.
Help members and others learn how to include the Society in their estate plans. Plan a yearly event to recognize and honor those individuals who have done so.
Create and implement services to welcome, inform, educate, recognize, integrate and support society members -- prospective, new and current. Visitors' Open House, Greeters, Young Ethicals, Ambassadors, and Ushers are included.
Encourage and support music in Ethical Society programs coordinating and planning with the Music Director and the Leaders. Helps to implement weekly Platform music programming, and assists in planning the Society festivals. The Music Team helps to organize musical events for the benefit of the Society for financial, social, and community outreach purposes and raises funds for our music programs.
Formulate staff policy, advise the Senior Leader, and serve as a resource for employees in the event of a conflict. Reports directly to the Board of Trustees.
Identify and recruit external speakers to provide Sunday Platforms that are stimulating and well presented with particular emphasis on ethical issues. Provide members to serve as Platform chairs and Opening Words speakers. Sets Platform procedures.
Greet people entering Platform and hand them programs. Assist people with hearing devices. Take an attendance count. Take the collection and count the money. Help direct Platform attendees in case of emergencies.
After Platform, visitors are invited to talk in a small group with current members of the Society. Hosts answer questions and describe the Society during a half-hour meeting. Hosts are long-time and new members who each conduct a session about six times a year.
The Youth Group elects its own teen officers. Officers partner with adult advisors to facilitate discussions on current events and ethical challenges, and manage community service and fundraising events. The advisors help provide a safe, respectful, and confidential environment where teens can freely discuss and explore topics important to them. The group works on cultivating a compassionate community that thinks critically and inspires active engagement in creation of a more healthy, happy, and ethical world.
Being human, together.
Ethical Society of St. Louis is a welcoming home to Humanists, and community is very important to us. We want you to feel a part of our community and that, for many people, means more than just coming to our Sunday Programs.