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So You Want to be a Speaker…


Thank you for your interest in speaking at Sunday Assembly Chapel Hill! Our speakers are central to a great Sunday Assembly experience. It is the goal of Sunday Assembly Chapel Hill to provide our community with quality secular programming that is positive, diverse, educational, uplifting, and family-friendly.

We also strive to offer speakers compelling platform for your ideas with an engaged and thoughtful audience. It is our hope that the following information will help you understand the needs of our community.

The Sunday Assembly Charter

Below is the charter for Sunday Assemblies worldwide. We at Sunday Assembly are guided by our core values and our speakers craft their talks with these values in mind.

The Sunday Assembly is a secular congregation that celebrates life.
Our motto: live better, help often, wonder more.
Our vision: To help everyone live life as fully as possible.

We are here for everyone who wants to:

  • Live Better. We aim to provide inspiring, thought-provoking and practical ideas that help people to live the lives they want to lead and be the people they want to be
  • Help Often. Assemblies are communities of action building lives of purpose, encouraging us all to help anyone who needs it to support each other
  • Wonder More. Hearing talks, singing as one, listening to readings and even playing games helps us to connect with each other and the awesome world we live in.

The Sunday Assembly:

  1. Is 100% celebration of life. We are born from nothing and go to nothing. Let’s enjoy it together.
  2. Has no doctrine. We have no set texts so we can make use of wisdom from all sources.
  3. Has no deity. We don’t do supernatural but we also won’t tell you you’re wrong if you do.
  4. Is radically inclusive. Everyone is welcome, regardless of their beliefs—this is a place of love that is open and accepting.
  5. Is free to attend, not-for-profit and volunteer run. We ask for donations to cover our costs and support our community work.
  6. Has a community mission. Through our Action Heroes (you!), we will be a force for good.
  7. Is independent. We do not accept sponsorship or promote outside businesses, organizations, or services.
  8. Is here to stay. With your involvement, The Sunday Assembly will make the world a better place.
  9. We won’t tell you how to live, but will try to help you do it as well as you can.
  10. And remember point 1… The Sunday Assembly is a celebration of the one life we know we have.

Speaking at Sunday Assembly Chapel Hill

We trust our guest speakers to remember that Sunday Assembly is radically inclusive. Our members come from a variety of backgrounds and we encourage speakers to share their insightful views while being considerate of the diversity of views within our group.

  • We require speakers to provide in advance:
    • an outline or short summary of your talk
    • your Powerpoint presentation or other visual aids
    • A short bio
  • All speaker content should be original and give credit where appropriate.
  • All talks should aim to inspire, inform and engage the audience.
  • As a community of compassion, we aim to make Sunday Assembly a safe, nurturing space for all.
    • We ask any philosophical critiques be scholarly and academic in nature. Personal attacks directed towards individuals or groups should be avoided at all costs.
    • Assemblies must not be used to sell products, promote businesses or services, endorse or vent about political candidates, political views, or religious or antireligious matters.
  • As we are a secular congregation, speakers should speak to themes of naturalism and avoid invoking the supernatural—“Outer space is amazing!” rather than “Astrology can change your life.”
  • As a celebration of life, speakers should focus on the positive—“We can achieve great things as people working together” rather than “Religion ruins lives!”

Timing: We ask that speakers aim for talks around 15-20 minutes long.

What is required on the day of the Assembly:

  • We meet at the ArtsCenter in Carrboro. Assemblies begin at 10:30 am. We ask that speakers arrive by 10 am.
  • Assemblies generally begin with two songs, an introduction to the theme, and often a reading, followed by our guest speaker.
  • Speakers stand on a small stage alongside a screen displaying their slides or visual aids. Slides are advanced by the speaker using a remote. A music stand is provided for speaker notes.
  • If you would like to make changes to this setup (to incorporate movement, enable a demonstration, use your own laptop, etc.) we’re happy to work with you! Just let us know in advance.

We sincerely thank you your interest is speaking. If you have an idea for a talk that meets the requirements above, or if you have any questions, please contact us.

Additional Resources:

How to Give a Killer Presentation