About the Author

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Michelle Richards is a Unitarian Universalist Credentialed Religious Educator at the Master Level and is the author of Come Into the Circle: Worshiping with Children and Tending the Flame: The Art of Unitarian Universalist Parenting (published by Skinner House Books). She wrote and developed the Popcorn Theology curriculum series as well as co-authored the curriculum, Compass Points, and the Tapestry of Faith program, Love Connects Us, which is available on-line from the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA).  She has also written two summer day camp programs which were used at two UUA General Assemblies and co-authored the recent revision of the UU Identity Module. She is a regular contributor to UU World’s website, starting with writing the UU Parenting blog which ran for four years.

             She previously served the Central Midwest District of the Unitarian Universalist Association as a small church religious education program consultant and RE Training Coordinator following a seven year term as Director of Religious Education at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Elkhart. On behalf of the MidAmerica region, she has presented a series of webinars or workshop presentations, including the integration of technology into religious education programs and how to involve youth in the overall life of the church. As a LREDA Good Officer, she co-led a new DRE training and communicates regularly through the MidAmerica “RE Talks” series of Zoom meetings. She is also a LREDA trainer for mentors who, having completed the credentialing program, seek to give back by becoming mentors for others currently enrolled.

             Richards spearheaded the development of a new summer camp for Unitarian Universalist families, Chalice Sparx, which debuted in the summer of 2014. Now in the process of incorporating as a not-for-profit entity, she is working on assembling a board and creating bylaws for the organization.

             Prior to becoming a professional religious educator 20 years ago, Michelle worked as a writer and television producer for several local public television stations in Indiana.  During this time she wrote and produced six documentaries dealing with children and educational issues.  She has a bachelor’s degree in Radio/Television/Film from Indiana State University with a specialization in writing and film criticism and is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Educational Psychology.

             Michelle has been married to husband Bryan for 28 years and together they have two children: Carson (age 15) and Shannon (age 22). Michelle is also a blue belt in Tae Kwon Do, does Yoga sporadically but appreciatively, and loves sharing via social networking tools like Twitter and Pinterest.

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Michelle Richards, CRE-ML