India McKnight began serving as the Director of Religious Education at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Queens in Flushing, NY this fall. India is originally from Silver Spring, MD, a suburb of Washington, DC. Growing up, she was exposed to the arts, and activism with a global focus and a deep sense of curiosity.
As a teenager she began attending the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Silver Spring and was drawn in by kind individuals and a justice focused spiritual youth group. At 19, India worked as a Religious Education Assistant for the Paint Branch Unitarian Universalist Church in Hyattsville, MD and served on the DRUUMM Youth and Young Adult National Steering Committee. She also served as an AmeriCorps Volunteer at the Alliance of AIDS Services in Durham, NC providing financial and counseling services to individuals living with AIDS/ HIV. Prior to becoming the DRE at UUCQ in September 2009, she worked with the Unitarian Universalist Association in the Youth Ministry Office for two years.
Through her volunteer and community work, India has developed a passion for working with Unitarian Universalist children and youth. She writes, “As a denomination we have an amazing opportunity to develop and experience strong leadership from our Religious Education programs.” “In developing that leadership we must make sure our children and youth have roots in our faith; roots that connect them to community, ritual, worship, and social justice.”
India loves chillin with her ancestors, traveling, reading, talking to strangers, writing and volunteering. She is a member of the Safe Outside the System collective of the Audre Lorde Project Organization. (www.alp.org) The Safe Outside the System collective are community members and organizations committed to providing safe spaces, financial support, time and effort to protect Queer People of Color in Brooklyn from violence.