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Yesterday — 1 June 2023Social Media

Do you ever participate in spiritual communities other than UU for services and programming?

Is there anyone in this thread that participates in regular worship/programs/events in another spiritual community other than your UU congregation? I go back and forth between UU and the local Episcopal Church regularly. I love the stimulating and intellectual sermons and programs that the UU church offers, not to mention a like minded liberal community. On the other hand enjoy the liturgy and especially the music that the Episcopal Church offers. I especially love their services at Christmas and Easter. Also the local UU church mastered virtual worships, programs and social events much better during the pandemic than the Episcopalians did.

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Before yesterdaySocial Media

Creativity and the Muse (05/28/23 Sermon) - White Bear Unitarian Universalist Church (WBUUC) Sermons

Watch the Service: To enable YouTube provided closed-captioning while viewing the service, click the “CC” icon on the bottom bar of your YouTube video player.    

What would a Unitarian Universalist do if they find out another member has bigoted views?

It could be a Christian or Muslim that left a homophobic church/religious setting but still holds onto their views or a racist agnostic because they only heard what their own race told them and rarely interacted with other races?

Since we are about accepting those who are different from us and respecting their opinions, but at the same time, giving room to debate their ideas and accept the possibility we could be wrong, what would be a ideal way a Unitarian Universalist would approach the person about their views?

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Introducing my Hindu Partner to a UU Organization

Hey everyone!

I was raised UU, but haven't been back to regular service since before high school. My partner is Hindu, and because I am not spiritually religeous, I celebrate hindu holidays and we eat by his religeous dietary restrictions. Hinduism is an open practice, but we have no temples specific to Hinduism in our area, and he worries as a non-indian practitioner coming in with a white partner, he might be judged. I had suggested maybe we could check out some of the UU's in the area, see if maybe there are individuals there he can connect with that he might find a spiritual community where he can go to a regular weekly service, and he's very interested.

He specifically really wants to be able to wear traditional temple wear and is concerned about the public perception of this in a congregation. In support of his beliefs, I've become more of a philosophical hindu that an spiritual one, and I dress in a saree with him when we celebrate holidays, and I put on Tilak with him. He's asked if this would be odd or shunned in a UU setting if we were to show up dressed like we were going to Temple. I wanted to turn to our greater community here to see if anyone has had experience with their UU on this, and maybe some suggestions of UU congregations in New Jersey that would be open to us.

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I'm an ex christian pagan, are any ex christians in this community?

I'm looking to see if this is gonna be a comfy place for someone like me? I left the church due to the fact that for me a loving God cannot exist in the same place as a hell. I also have a hard time accepting that a loving God would allow so much suffering.

However I miss the community that comes with church, and I do believe in a Power. I subscribe to animism, and I think that Power is the Spirit of the Universe.

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Thoughts: Filianism

Are there any Filianyi or Deanics here? I just found out about Filianism the other day and it’s tickled my religious studies curiosity. If there are any what do you believe and where are some good communities to find more information?

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Nap Ministry - Sermons-First Unitarian Universalist Society of San Francisco

"Nap Ministry"
Sunday, May 21, 10:50 am

Tricia Hersey, ordained and tired, got drawn to the idea of a ministry around rest, nap-in-happenings but also the larger idea of rest as revolution. Tied deeply to undoing some of the patterns of a culture that has made models of extraction more than colonial models abroad, Hersey unpacks what virtue around rest and work and justice embodied ask of us. It is all very fun and deeply powerful to consider. Note: This Sunday is the Sunday of the Bay to Breakers run so if you come to church in person (please do, if you are inclined!) just check your route against the route of the race!

Rev. Vanessa Rush Southern, Senior Minister; Rev. Laura Shennum, Minister of Congregational Life; Mari Magaloni Ramos, Worship Associate; The Bernal Hill Players: Martha Rodríguez-Salazar, flute; Leah di Tullio, clarinet; Jennifer Peringer, piano; Richard Fey songleader; Wm. García Ganz, pianist

Shulee Ong, Camera; Jonathan Silk, Communications Director; Tom Brookshire, Live Chat Moderator; Judy Payne, Flowers; Linda Messner, Head Usher

"What Are You Looking For?" with Rev. Dr. Marlin Lavanhar - All Souls Unitarian Church

This message was delivered on Sunday, May 21, 2023 at All Souls Unitarian Church in Tulsa, Oklahoma by Rev. Dr. Marlin Lavanhar in the 10am Service. SUBSCRIBE TO WATCH SERMONS FROM OUR MINISTERS: WANT TO LISTEN? SUBSCRIBE TO AUDIO PODCAST: GIVE TO SUPPORT LOVE BEYOND BELIEF: or text LOVEBB to 73256 LET'S CONNECT: Facebook: Instagram: All Souls Church Website:

"Seasons of Love" with Rev. Barbara Prose - All Souls Unitarian Church

This message was delivered on Sunday, May 14, 2023 at All Souls Unitarian Church in Tulsa, Oklahoma by Rev. Barbara Prose in the 10am Service. SUBSCRIBE TO WATCH SERMONS FROM OUR MINISTERS: WANT TO LISTEN? SUBSCRIBE TO AUDIO PODCAST: GIVE TO SUPPORT LOVE BEYOND BELIEF: or text LOVEBB to 73256 LET'S CONNECT: Facebook: Instagram: All Souls Church Website:

Wanting less

The other day I was chatting with my partner. We’re in our 40s, have a 9 y/o daughter, small three bedroom place, couple cars: life is really good.

We came around to some other family that is in a higher tax bracket than we are. They already have a massive house in an expensive area. Apparently no locals use the public beaches where they’re at, they become members at a private beach where the only requirement is money. Maybe $5k to join? We love (and like!) this family; they are totally reasonable people.

I have things like this beach in my life too! I just bought a pair of $700 headphones that I love. Yessssss (insert Jack Nicholson crazy town yes-face gif) there are $1k headphones I’d also love!

So, there is a philosophical question here: how much is enough? Why do I live and feel the way I do about all this stuff? I think the answer is straight forward enough (consumerism, rat race, keep up with Jones, capitalism): but for me, it’s gonna be a journey of unlearning. Like all journeys begins with a step, I’ll start with a Reddit post.

What do you think? Do you struggle with living in the moment? What about Buddhism? Read any good books about this?

Sure letmegooglethatforyou.com lmgtfu, but I usually find some excellent minds and community right here in subreddits and my algorithms are different than yours.

Thanks!

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Baby friendly?

My spouse and I are looking to attend a service soon (our first). We have a 4 month old that will have to come with us. Of course if she’s fussy one of us will step out with her, but are UU services generally accepting of infants? Probably my religious trauma, but I’m terrified of getting looks from people if she starts fussing.

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ISO Readings, Prayers or Poems for Grief, Loss and Death

I'm hoping you can share some of your favorite readings, prayers or poems that brought you some comfort and/or closure after a loss.

​

I'm not one that really relates much to bible verses or the traditional catholic church preachings, but after suffering a loss in my family, my heart feels like it's craving some spirituality.

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Anyone here a religious "refugee" who sought shelter in the UUC?

Hey guys and gals.

As the title says, anyone here a religious "refugee", as in someone who came to the UU Church after escaping from another religion they desperately wanted to leave? I remember reading stories of UUs who used to be Jehovah's Witnesses but got tired of the cults repressive practices, as well as how they got shunned by their family and friends for going their own ways instead of being obedient and thus, found shelter in the UU Church and converted. Same thing with evangelical Christians who got tired of the fire-and-brimstone stuff, like being gay and abortion are "evil" chose to be a Unitarian-Universalist instead. Anyone had stories like this where you guys converted to UUism after escaping from religions, or even cults, you guys wanted to leave?

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IAmUU Shop | Redbubble

16 May 2023 at 09:30
By: I Am UU
One more post to say that I am going to take down the I Am UU shop at the end of June. I might put some of the designs up somewhere eventually, but I make no promises at this point.


IAmUU is an independent artist creating amazing designs for great products such as t-shirts, stickers, posters, and phone cases.

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Please send me good vibes, I have been cast out since my father died.

Hello, I am 35 years old and I have diabetic neuropathy and have not been able to work because of it. I singed up on my disability but have been denied, but keep applying. I do not want to do this, but I lost my dad in Sept. and I stayed and took care of him. When I lost him, I lost everything. He didn't have any insirance and left behind a lot of medical bills. I am asking if someone can please help me with anything? My cashapp is $rcb5167 and my paypal is the same if you can help. He was an elderly man and caught covid and it set up on his lungs and killed him. I have no food or money and my rent is coming due and I have no way to pay for any of it, I know I shouldnt beg online, and It looks suspsicious, but I swear to you it's the truth. I miss that man so much I cannot stand it sometimes. What is a way I can miss him less? Also, I have been cast out by the rest of my family because I am gay. Anyways, please just send me good vibes and help if you can, I have also contacted churches and ministries but that did no good. Sorry for the long post, I just needed to rant I guess. I just dont get how my family can hate me so bad for just being me. I know there are other who have it rough, but this is pretty rough. Please send good vibes also.

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On Ministers and Light Bulbs (05/14/23 Service) - White Bear Unitarian Universalist Church (WBUUC) Sermons

Watch the Service: To enable YouTube provided closed-captioning while viewing the service, click the “CC” icon on the bottom bar of your YouTube video player.    

What does your “service” look like?

Who leads it? A pastor??

Whats the content?? What do they talk about? (if everyone believes something different and follows a different book, what do they do?)

Is it interactive? (Or is one person speaking to the rest)?

Is it kinda like AA where you can come and stand in the back corner and no one will acknowledge you or speak to you, or are people super friendly and try to get everyone to engage?

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asking if I’d fit in with y’all…. ? I am searching for an alternative to “church”

I like: -community gatherings -doing stuff together like gardening or cleaning up trash -making and eating meals together sometimes -basically cult behavior but just once a week max.

I believe: -no “God”. -i am open to the consideration there may be a higher power. I will never have faith in one or be convinced of it. -And I don’t believe in “Jesus” whatsoever. -I like psychedelics and -believing we’re all connected -I think humans are alike to nature with no greater purpose than to live similar to the trees and ants have no greater purpose.

I’m thinking maybe Unitarian Universalists (?) And I do like the values of Taoism and Buddhism but they lack a “church” community. Whatcha think?

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A Sacred Choice: Reproductive Justice - Sermons-First Unitarian Universalist Society of San Francisco

"A Sacred Choice: Reproductive Justice"
Sunday, May 14, 10:50 am

On this day honoring mothers, what does it mean to truly support the choice to become a mother or not? What does the upcoming resolution call us as a congregation to do to support this choice?

Rev. Laura Shennum, Minister of Congregational Life; Bree Shennum, Worship Associate; Reiko Oda Lane, Organist; UUSF Choir led by Mark Sumner, Music Director; Peg Lisi, Soloist

Shulee Ong, Camera; Jonathan Silk, Communications Director; Amy Kelly, Flowers; Linda Messner, Head Usher

Independent church question

Hello everyone, I’m 15 and I have autism and I believe that dolls/action figures have souls and that marriage is eternal. I want to establish an independent Unitarian Universalist church for my action figures that is just for them and I want to become the Minister of my congregation. I was wondering if there are any Unitarian Universalist minister in this sub who could virtually ordain (by saying a blessing for me in a comment here) me as the minister of my congregation of my action figures.

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"When Mercy Speaks" with Rev. Randy Lewis - All Souls Unitarian Church

Is there a limit to mercy, and who decides?  And when we don't know how to forgive ourselves, where can we find the permission, or the courage, to do so?  In this timely message, Rev. Randy reflects on the challenges of forgiving ourselves, even from terrible things we've done, and the importance of letting mercy courageously enter our lives. This message was delivered on Sunday, May 7, 2023 at All Souls Unitarian Church in Tulsa, Oklahoma by Rev. Randy Lewis in the 10am Service. SUBSCRIBE TO WATCH SERMONS FROM OUR MINISTERS:   WANT TO LISTEN? SUBSCRIBE TO AUDIO PODCAST:   GIVE TO SUPPORT LOVE BEYOND BELIEF: http://www.allsoulschurch.org/GIVE or text LOVEBB to 73256 LET'S CONNECT: Facebook: Instagram: All Souls Church Website:  

Google Bard AI gives UU a glowing recommendation

13 May 2023 at 20:25

I asked the new Google Artificial Intelligence named “Bard” about Unitarian Universalism and I love it’s response!

Bard Unitarian Universalism Description

“Unitarian Universalism is a religion that emphasizes freedom of thought, tolerance, and social justice. Unitarian Universalists believe that all people are created equal and that we are all responsible for making the world a better place. They are committed to exploring the meaning of life and to finding ways to live in harmony with one another and with the planet. Unitarian Universalism is a growing religion, and it is attracting people from all walks of life. If you are looking for a religion that is open and welcoming, that encourages you to think for yourself, and that is committed to making the world a better place, then Unitarian Universalism may be the right choice for you.”

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Interested in joining, but I have questions TW

TW: CSA as the *middle question, please skip if it is sensitive for you

Are they allowed to swear? I’ve been lurking a bit and I have not seen anyone swear in this forum. It’s not a deal-breaker, and it’d be expected in a tolerant religious forum, but it’s interesting.

How the the UU Church handle things like child abuse? While I imagine the extremely progressive policies turn away a lot of would-be abusers, abusers can exist in all places and any positions of power. What does the UU do to both prevent and rectify any issues of child abuse / SA? While I agree that all humans should receive love and dignity, I believe that victims have a right to safety that takes precedence to an abuser’s right to community and I have no interest in being part of a church that does not reflect these values.

What’s the rub? These values seem to reflect the interests of many young leftist Millenials and Gen-Z - many of us are desperate for community, lonely, and depressed, and this church seems to be a great place to fulfill those needs and reconnect with others. Why aren’t more people a part of this? Admittedly, I thought Unitarians were just leftist Christians until a mom’s Facebook group post explained it further, which piqued my interest. I also saw a noticeable lack on info on social media - are Unitarians against evangelizing online?

ETA: Is polyamory accepted in the UU? I am not poly but I’m just wondering

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Friends and followers, the time has come... This page will stay up, but Thomas will not be posting here any longer. Don't unfol...

11 May 2023 at 17:00
By: I Am UU
Friends and followers, the time has come...

This page will stay up, but Thomas will not be posting here any longer. Don't unfollow just yet; we're working on some things that could be pretty cool...

The website will still be up, but we are thinking of a redesign and maybe changing the focus of it.

The We Are UUs Facebook group has changed names but will remain active and under my administration.

If you want to follow Thomas as a community minister, social media creator, and general encourager, you can do so by following Thomas Earthman - SJC. Yes, I know that I am leaving a lot of fans of this page behind, but I want the people who choose to be there.



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It is time to announce that this page will not be updated any longer. The group will become "We Are UUs", and the website will s...

10 May 2023 at 14:22
By: I Am UU
It is time to announce that this page will not be updated any longer. The group will become "We Are UUs", and the website will stay up so you can link to the hundreds of posts and pages there. This page stays up, so you can link to the work published here, but it will not be updated any longer. New UU content will be shared to the group, and more general encouragement, inspiration, and thoughts on justice and governance will be on my Public Figure page, Thomas Earthman - SJC



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Imagination - Dreaming Big About Our Future Together (05/07/23 Sermon) - White Bear Unitarian Universalist Church (WBUUC) Sermons

Watch the Service: To enable YouTube provided closed-captioning while viewing the service, click the “CC” icon on the bottom bar of your YouTube video player.    

Little Did I Know - Sermons-First Unitarian Universalist Society of San Francisco

"Little Did I Know"
Sunday, May 7, 10:50 am

An anthology on caring for young people, a grief (or preparation project) around the Empty Nest Chapter that was on the horizon. That's how the book project began, but it took me places that were so different than I expected... as our journey loving and caring for the young people in our lives, I guess, always does.

Rev. Vanessa Rush Southern, Senior Minister; Rev. Laura Shennum, Minister of Congregational Life; Carmen Barsody, Worship Associate; Reiko Oda Lane, Organist; UUSF Choir led by Mark Sumner, Music Director; Wm. García Ganz, Pianist

Shulee Ong, Camera; Eric Shackelford, Camera; Jonathan Silk, Communications Director; Santana Gonzalez-Gomez, Chat Moderator; Kelvin Jones, Sexton; Amy Kelly, Flowers; Linda Messner, Head Usher

9 Years Ago

6 May 2023 at 14:49
By: I Am UU
It is not faith that is divisive, but pride.



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SERMON: Saved: Rev. Kim K. Crawford Harvie - Arlington Street Church

Recorded live at Arlington Street Church, Sunday, April 30, 2023.

Can someone please send me some prayer and good vibes?

Hello. I am doing this is a last resort because I am hungry and pretty much on the brink of homelessness. Please pray for me. I lost a loved one in September that I took care of and have been in between work from home jobs and now have no job and no home in two weeks. I lived off my fathers income because I took care of him. I am now down to nothing and live in a rural area and I have my rent internet and everything due. No speakable family and no transportation. I’d appreciate anything if anyone could help, and even if you can help financially please send me prayers. I have thought about giving up but I don’t want to but it makes it dang near impossible not to. I am also ostercized for living in a small southern town and being lgbtq. Anyways I’m sorry to ask for this but I need money in the worst way I literally don’t know where my next bill or meal is going to come from? And if you say I’m faking I don’t care and won’t respond. Please help me even if it’s prayer. I also have cashapp if anyone could help.

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Thanks so much, and a question.

4 May 2023 at 10:16

I've known of UUism since my pagan teens, but I've never participated it it because I was scared and there wasn't a UU church in 50+ miles.

I still don't have a UU church in 50+ miles (AFAIK), but I have discovered the church of the larger fellowship. As a trans LGBT+ person, it's so hard to balance activism and anger and peace and refuge. I'm trying so hard to grow peace in myself but it's so difficult and so rewarding. I know anger sucks so much out of myself that could be used for better things, so anger isn't something I encourage or want in myself anymore. The CLF is helping me so much to make peace.

I have also loved how the CLF has challenged me. I'm trying to expand my listening skills and trying not to make quick, survival judgements on people. I have ASD, and eventually you become like you've been in war, you learn how to make a snap judgement on somebody because it could very well be life or death. But now I'm trying to heal from that, and I'm thinking of the thing in a recent CLF service - holy curiosity. I want and need to stop being so reactive, I want to really experience other people with real curiosity.

Can I call myself UU? Even though I haven't signed some book in a place I can't reasonably access?

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Quick post only to say that Thomas is posting on the public figure page, Thomas Earthman - SJC . I'm still working out what com...

3 May 2023 at 12:13
By: I Am UU
Quick post only to say that Thomas is posting on the public figure page, Thomas Earthman - SJC .

I'm still working out what comes next for this page. If you have constructive feedback or encouragement to share, please go to the I Am UU Community to add to that discussion.

Photo for the robot...



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Curious, potentially attending a service soon, feeling nervous/not sure what to expect.

Hi there y'all. I am probably going along with a friend to a local UU service this weekend. My friend is a member of UU and is involved in some volunteer community work that uses the UU's meeting space a couple of week nights per month. This volunteer group is open to all, not just UU folks, and I've wanted to get involved, but I thought it might be nice to get to know the UU community there as well.

Partly it just feels like good manners to make that effort. But I've also been wanting to widen my personal sphere of community and work on developing my spiritually a bit. And now I feel oddly shy!

I guess I just don't know what to expect. I've never been particularly religious. My mother has been an active member of Unity Church my whole life and I attended the youth programs there as a kid, fell away from that in my teens, identified myself as an atheist for a long time, then came around to the idea of a non-religious spirituality. In time I've come to define that spirituality as pagan in nature.

I live in a relatively progressive city in a deep red state. I don't really know other pagans, I don't have anyone to share my practice with, have discussions with, or learn from. I've felt very lonely in this regard, and sometimes also silly. I know my local UU does do services and hosts events for some pagan holidays like Yule, so it may be a good opportunity to connect with some of that community.

I'm not and never have been Christian, despite attending Unity as a kid. I know that Unity is based in Christianity specifically and UU is not, but since childhood I haven't attended any kind of Sunday service at all. I guess I worry that I'll stand out or will obviously "not belong" in some way, or that I'll be too out there even for UU, or even more intimidating: that I'll like it and want to come back.

I know no two UU communities are identical but I guess I'm asking what, in general, should I expect?

Edit: even if I haven't responded, I have read all of your comments and I appreciate y'all's input! Thanks!

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Beginner's Mind (04/30/23 Service) - White Bear Unitarian Universalist Church (WBUUC) Sermons

Watch the Service: To enable YouTube provided closed-captioning while viewing the service, click the “CC” icon on the bottom bar of your YouTube video player.    

6 Years Ago

3 May 2023 at 02:20
By: I Am UU




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8 Years Ago

1 May 2023 at 14:26
By: I Am UU




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Members(hip) Matters

1 May 2023 at 11:07
By: I Am UU
Members(hip) Matters: In a post written before the events of late last week, Thomas intended to continue the discussion of membership in Unitarian Universalism...


Editor’s Note: Today’s post was written before the events of last week on our Facebook Page. I will write more about all of that, maybe as soon as this week, but for now, this was the f…

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A May Day Convergence - Sermons-First Unitarian Universalist Society of San Francisco

"A May Day Convergence"
Sunday, April 30, 10:50 am

On May 1st, it would appear that everything is converging at the same moment, whether it be the international worker's holiday, the Beltane festival, or a desperate call for help.

Rev. Millie Phillips, Affiliated Community Minister; Mari Magaloni Ramos, Worship Associate; Reiko Oda Lane, Organist; UUSF Choir led by Mark Sumner, Music Director

Shulee Ong, Camera; Eric Shackelford, Camera; Jonathan Silk, Communications Director; Santana Gonzalez-Gomez, Chat Moderator; Thomas Brown, Sexton; Athena Papsadakos, Flowers; Linda Messner, Head Usher

SERMON: Don't Miss It: Rev. Beth Robbins - Arlington Street Church

Recorded live at Arlington Street Church, Sunday, April 23, 2023.

There is a discussion in the I Am UU Community group about what the future holds for the I Am UU Project. We invite all the peop...

30 April 2023 at 19:29
By: I Am UU
There is a discussion in the I Am UU Community group about what the future holds for the I Am UU Project. We invite all the people following this page to add their thoughts, but ask that they be phrased to be constructive and/or encouraging.



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9 Years Ago

30 April 2023 at 13:44
By: I Am UU




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"R U Redeemable?" w/Rev. Dr. Marlin Lavanhar - All Souls Unitarian Church

This message was delivered on Sunday, April 30, 2023 at All Souls Unitarian Church in Tulsa, Oklahoma by Rev. Dr. Marlin Lavanhar in the 10am Service.   SUBSCRIBE TO WATCH SERMONS FROM OUR MINISTERS: https://www.youtube.com/user/allsoulsunitarian  WANT TO LISTEN? SUBSCRIBE TO AUDIO PODCAST: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/all-souls-unitarian-church/id193096943   GIVE TO SUPPORT LOVE BEYOND BELIEF: http://www.allsoulschurch.org/GIVE or text LOVEBB to 73256   LET'S CONNECT: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/allsoulstulsa Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/allsoulstulsa/  All Souls Church Website: http://www.allsoulschurch.org/connect

A number of people felt strongly enough about Thomas saying that he was burned out to reach out via email, which is a strange wa...

29 April 2023 at 11:40
By: I Am UU
A number of people felt strongly enough about Thomas saying that he was burned out to reach out via email, which is a strange way to respond to that message.

That said, most such replies were quite positive and supportive. Most of those messages of support came from UU Professionals, and it was actually nice to hear from my colleagues on this.

The I Am UU page will stay up for now, but I do not know when or If I will actually be posting more content. It still takes time and energy that I don't feel good about giving right now. I do feel a little better than last night, so we'll see where that goes.

I will not be taking further questions at this time.



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So, the question keeps being asked: "What makes one a Unitarian Universalist?" Since all definitions are exclusive, in order ...

28 April 2023 at 16:35
By: I Am UU
So, the question keeps being asked:

"What makes one a Unitarian Universalist?"

Since all definitions are exclusive, in order for Unitarian Universalism to have any definition, it must exclude some people. So, who gets to make that decision? What is the cut off?

Officially, the definition is "Someone who is a member of a UU Congregation." Membership is defined by the congregation and anyone who meets the responsibilities is in.

What other definition is there that actually has meaning, but is somehow less "exclusive" than this?



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Our last blog post really stirred up some feelings in ways we did not expect. Mostly because the thing that people grabbed onto ...

28 April 2023 at 14:04
By: I Am UU
Our last blog post really stirred up some feelings in ways we did not expect. Mostly because the thing that people grabbed onto is something we've said many times. It was the focus of several blog posts and mentioned in several others. It's something foundational. It's something that our clergy and professional religious educators learn as the basis for all of our work...

"Are you telling me that being UU isn’t only being in ethical and philosophical alignment but must include active participation in a congregation?"

Yes. Yes we are. And we've been saying it all along.

Covenantal religion requires covenant. It's inseparable and practically tautological.

Membership is a choice we make over and over, not a right granted once and carried forever. Our Principles cannot be lived in isolation, and so you have to be a UU to actually be UU.

So, let's focus on why that's a problem and see if we can solve it.



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No, Your Neighbor is Probably Not a Unitarian Universalist

26 April 2023 at 15:01
By: I Am UU
Conservatives cannot get that a lack of creed is not the same thing as "you can believe anything you want", but despite what you may have seen on Facebook, your neighbor probably is NOT a Unitarian Universalist.


I’ve recently seen people share this post from December 2019 written Jonathan Tjarks and shared in several places: The mistaken premise of the article is that because Unitarian Universalism d…

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Constant Sermons about Church Development

One of the things I have noticed in the local UU congregation is the fact that the minister frequently gives thinly veiled sermons about church development, especially in the area of church fundraising or volunteering your time (but especially about money). The sermons often have an attention getting title like "Exploring Your Relationship With the UU Church" or some such thing. I actually want to explore my spirituality, not be guilted that I have to give more money or time to the church. I do understand that the light bill and staff need to be paid (or the coffee made for after the service). But the constant sermons about development can be a turnoff to members or attendees that don't have the means or are of a lower socioeconomic class.

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faith question

27 April 2023 at 08:32

hey I've got a question. As a trans muslimah would U be accepted into the UU community?

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Earth Day Sunday (04/23/23 Sermon) - White Bear Unitarian Universalist Church (WBUUC) Sermons

Watch the Service: To enable YouTube provided closed-captioning while viewing the service, click the “CC” icon on the bottom bar of your YouTube video player.    

UU disabled & Allies: How can our homes be more accessible?

Hi UU folks with disabilities & our allies! How can our homes be more accessible? We all want to welcome diverse guests into our homes, and 100% of us are aging. Click below for the new issue of the UUCE Accessibility Task Force (ATF). Find out about a free, national webinar this Sunday, 4/30, noon pt. Please share:

https://conta.cc/3L0FNb7

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UU Disabled & Allies: How can our homes be more accessible?

25 April 2023 at 19:50

Hi UU folks with disabilities & our allies! How can our homes be more accessible? We all want to welcome diverse guests into our homes, and 100% of us are aging. Click below for the new issue of the UUCE Accessibility Task Force (ATF). Find out about a free, national webinar this Sunday, 4/30, noon pt. Please share:

https://conta.cc/3L0FNb7

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The Problem with God - Sermons-First Unitarian Universalist Society of San Francisco

"The Problem with God"
Sunday, April 23, 10:50 am

For a lot of people it's the notion of "God" that gets in the way of coming into a religious community. So I want to explore some of what the "problem with God" is and some ways folks have reframed that word -- or reclaimed it -- so that we can see what possibilities there are for God (and where we hit some limits).

Rev. Vanessa Rush Southern, Senior Minister; Rev. Laura Shennum, Minister of Congregational Life; Dennis Adams, Worship Associate; Rheinber Award Committee; Jennifer Peringer, piano; Mark Sumner, piano; Ben Rudiak-Gould, songleader

Jonathan Silk, Communications Director; Asani Seawell, Chat Moderator; Thomas Brown, Sexton; Carrie Steere-Salazar, Flowers; Linda Messner, Head Usher

Unitarian Universalism isn't a structure, but a set of tools and a place to build with them. It is up to you to make something w...

24 April 2023 at 11:05
By: I Am UU
Unitarian Universalism isn't a structure, but a set of tools and a place to build with them. It is up to you to make something with what we offer.

https://iamuu.org/being-uu/monday-mediation-free-faith-assembly-required/



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Masks required at General Assembly?

24 April 2023 at 17:21

I am thinking of attending this year's GA, despite the high cost ... $500 per person. I am my congregation's delegate. However, if I'm reading the website right, it looks like all in person attendees will be required to mask indoors at all times. This is so atypical I find it almost hard to believe. No church in my area requires masks for all, doctors do not require masks, and I live in New England which was a pretty committed mask wearing area during the pandemic height.

Can anyone offer some insight?

Additional questions-- does the UUA board mask fully when they meet? Do all UUA staff always mask indoors?

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What is the point of the Unitarian Universalist religion?!

23 April 2023 at 23:39

I am an agnostic-atheist, black female in my mid-forties. I am poor, since I am an immigrant and a live-in maid. I basically have no social life. So I decided to attend a UU church since I was feeling down and needed to be uplifted. I attended a UU service this Sunday, it made me even more depressed! It was the most boring thing I have ever experienced! Not to mention, that other than some kid who got some scholarship, and one other person who looked to be in their late 20's or early 30's, I, a woman in my mid 40's, was the youngest person there.

Don't get me wrong, the operatic music was well performed, and the orchestra was very impressive. But it's 2023! I feel like this was the same music they were playing 50 years ago. The sermon was empty platitudes like you would hear from a politician looking for votes in an upscale white, suburb. Nothing of any substance. The sort of lib-speak that is void of humanity. I almost fell asleep and had to resort to doing my Duolingo French lessons on my phone.

As I looked around at these 70 and 80 yr olds, I just wondered where the UU church will be in a decade or 2. Or maybe it's just a social club for well to do aged boomers, and they don't care what happens when they're dead....Sad thing is, I'll probably go back next Sunday. But they certainly are not going to be attracting younger people with what they are doing now.

submitted by /u/Keilaj
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Let’s talk about fundraising

Like most congregations, ours is recovering from the effects of the pandemic, but realistically, needs to turn the tide of years of declining membership.

I’m looking for innovative fundraising ideas, particularly those that help the church reach out to the community and hopefully, attract more newcomers.

TIA

submitted by /u/CloseTTEdge
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Women's groups and men's groups

20 April 2023 at 19:06

Are they appropriate in today's UU church, or exclusionary relics from last century?

submitted by /u/bisnark
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"Redeeming the Times" w/ Carlton D. Pearson - All Souls Unitarian Church

This message was delivered on Sunday, April 16th, 2023 at All Souls Unitarian Church in Tulsa, Oklahoma by Carlton D. Pearson during The Point service.   SUBSCRIBE TO WATCH SERMONS FROM OUR MINISTERS: https://www.youtube.com/user/allsoulsunitarian  WANT TO LISTEN? SUBSCRIBE TO AUDIO PODCAST: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/all-souls-unitarian-church/id193096943   GIVE TO SUPPORT LOVE BEYOND BELIEF: http://www.allsoulschurch.org/GIVE or text LOVEBB to 73256   LET'S CONNECT: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/allsoulstulsa Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/allsoulstulsa/  All Souls Church Website: http://www.allsoulschurch.org/connect

Folks, we are at the point where the I Am UU project either needs to become as active as we've ever been, or we need to shut dow...

19 April 2023 at 17:52
By: I Am UU
Folks, we are at the point where the I Am UU project either needs to become as active as we've ever been, or we need to shut down. We cannot continue to keep operating this project as a part-time effort.

That choice is up to you.

https://iamuu.org/i-am-uu-news/can-we-keep-i-am-uu-on-line/



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Heartbeats - Sermons-First Unitarian Universalist Society of San Francisco

"Heartbeats"
Sunday, April 16, 10:50 am

I was 29 years old when I served as assistant minister to Diane Miller back in 79/80. 18 years in Hayward, then 17 in Columbus, 7 years retired. And bam! Just like that, I am 73 and have heart problems. I’m afforded good care through Ohiohealth, Medicare and supplemental insurance, gratefully. But there is no obvious Medicare of the spirit to help me, and most everyone I know, through these present difficult times of tumult, hurt, anger, fear and escalating injustice in the US and the rest of the world. I know my own metaphoric heart hurts more and more daily, but there are many things I remember from earlier in my life to remind me how to move through the present world with my heart beating with courage, freedom and love.

Rev. Dr. Marco Belletini, Guest Minister; Rev. Vanessa Rush Southern, Senior Minister; Rev. Laura Shennum, Minister of Congregational Life; Sam King, Worship Associate; Reiko Oda Lane, Organ; Mark Sumner, Music Director; UUSF Choir; Nancy Munn, Soloist; Brielle Marina Nielson, Soloist; Richard Fey, Soloist; Bill Ganz, Piano

Shulee Ong, Camera; Jackson Munn, Camera; Jonathan Silk, Communications Director; Tom Brookshire, Live Chat Moderator; Thomas Brown, Sexton; Carrie Steere-Salazar, Flowers; Linda Messner, Head Usher

This I Believe (4/16/23 Sermon) - White Bear Unitarian Universalist Church (WBUUC) Sermons

Watch the Service: To enable YouTube provided closed-captioning while viewing the service, click the “CC” icon on the bottom bar of your YouTube video player.    

Can We Keep I Am UU On-line?

18 April 2023 at 16:11
By: I Am UU
Imagine a television with no stations...

Without pages like this one, Facebook is a blank high-tech bulletin board. And it makes money selling ads based on our content and keeps all that for themselves. So we need your help...


Imagine a television with no stations. Without pages like this one, Facebook is a blank high-tech bulletin board. And it makes money selling ads based on our content and keeps all that for themselv…

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It appears Chat GPT is UU too!

18 April 2023 at 16:53
It appears Chat GPT is UU too!

I'm not sure what sub this is from, I borrowed it from FB. Maybe AI won't be so bad.

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A Scout's Own Religion

I'm a cubscout leader in the US. My best religious experiences were not from the United Methodist church I was brought up in, but from participating in nondenominational vespers at the scout summer camp where I worked as a youth. The BSA had (maybe has?) a program called "A Scouts Own Religion" that says any religion a scout follows is valid. My experiences in scouts shaped my view of religion, and eventually I joined a UU fellowship as a result. Many members declare they are buddist, christian, humanist, athiest, agnostic, etc. I don't think I'm any of these.

First of all, my concept of god is an idea of a supernatural connection between humans that compells us to be good. I feel there is some supernatural element. I feel that the religions that give god a name do it to simplify the concept. Making god an entity instead of a feeling gives god a voice. It's not human conscience compelling you but gods voice. I think it's an artistic way to present the concept.

Second, I think that demigods and saints serve a useful purpose. They give a person something to focus hope upon when they need a mental lift. I'm praying to St. Anthony to help me find my keys, or Freija to help my crops grow better, or Ai'wa when pandora is invaded by blackwater operators etc. I sort of believe that these fictional characters become real enough when we need them to be.

I also think we can't even comprehend the complexity of god, but that god must be accepting of our attempts. God is good, so I think god is goodness and kindness, not that god just likes goodness and kindness. I think it's right that people follow their minds and express faith as they see fit.

So what am I? How do I describe this concept? Religion is a significant part of Scouts. I don't want to lie to others and tell them I'm Christian or whatever. I don't feel the need to identify as Christian. I do think Jesus was real and taught people what is right, but I also think that an indescribable force exists which is bigger and more pure than the Christian concept of god. So what am I? What theology should I study to educate myself? I feel like my god IS goodness, kindness, and hope. So what do you call it?

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3 Years Ago

16 April 2023 at 17:22
By: I Am UU




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Feeling Isolated after making the Decision to leave an Evangelical Church and give our local UU church a try

I suppose I should not be surprised, but leaving a group we found to be unsympathetic to anyone unlike themselves, determinedly anti-intellectual to the point of harming themselves and devoted to mindlessly repeating cable TV slogans would be unsympathetic to our need to find a group closer to our more thoughtful point of view. Our, now former, friends have treated our decision to begin attending our warmly friendly and accepting, somewhat offbeat and kooky, highly intellectually charged local UU church with a mixture of disdain, aspersions that we lack agency and are somehow being led or tempted by dark forces and bland and unthoughtful sloganeering.

We had a friend over for lunch and walk around our neighborhood and he told us we were being lazy and didn’t want to ”do the hard work” of being a Christian as narrowly defined by the group. When gently cajoled with the story that some idiots had decided that the Bible did not mention water treatment and therefore the government and dark insidious forces were preventing us from the benefits of “raw water”. Some nitwits sickened themselves and their children by drinking water from a culvert (don’t do this) and I asked our friend gently to find some common ground and see if he agreed that some anti intellectual trends were causing Christians to harm themselves. The only example he could think of, gears clearly grinding hard, was that some communities and countries were trying to deemphasize use of petroleum which was OBVIOUSLY outrageous. I began to explain that we used to drive by massive smoke belching refineries in Louisiana surrounded by poor neighborhoods and although it might be familiar and convenient to fuel our vehicles with petroleum products it would be beneficial to all to be less…. Our friend‘s blank stare and complete confusion cut off a long treatise on the environmental and health impact, historically temporary nature and geopolitically unfortunate addiction to cheap oil as fuel. They are really just not interested in any kind of critical thinking and it saddens me.

suddenly, we have no friends and I am worried about my spouse who needs social contact much more than I.

anyone want to commiserate?

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Just a reminder that our admin and founder, Thomas Earthman - SJC, does preach as well as leading workshops on outreach, communi...

15 April 2023 at 14:55
By: I Am UU
Just a reminder that our admin and founder, Thomas Earthman - SJC, does preach as well as leading workshops on outreach, communication, and faith development.

If you are interested in an engagement for the summer, it is not too early to get in touch!



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A new website dedicated to saving the Seven Principles

14 April 2023 at 15:40

A proposal to replace Article II of the UU Bylaws (which in turn will replace the Seven Principles and Six Sources) will be voted on by UU delegates to UU General Assembly in June. The agenda for Article II is outlined here.

...

EDIT:

The proposal of the Article II Study Commission is a significant rewrite of Article II in the UU Bylaws. It fact, it does replace both the Seven Principles and the Six Sources.

More information can be found on the Study Commission website. They are currently accepting feedback through an online form, until April 30.

The website with essays is: https://savethe7principles.wordpress.com/. (And to correct an assumption some people made, I had nothing to do with the creation of the website.)

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A new website dedicated to saving the Seven Principles

A proposal to replace Article II of the UU Bylaws (which in turn will replace the Seven Principles and Six Sources) will be voted on by UU delegates to UU General Assembly in June. The agenda for Article II is outlined here.

...

EDIT:

The proposal of the Article II Study Commission is a significant rewrite of Article II in the UU Bylaws. It fact, it does replace both the Seven Principles and the Six Sources.

More information can be found on the Study Commission website. They are currently accepting feedback through an online form, until April 30.

The website with essays is: https://savethe7principles.wordpress.com/. (And to correct an assumption some people made, I had nothing to do with the creation of the website.)

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What is this symbol?

What is this symbol?

This banner hung at Unitarian Universalist Church (or Congregation?) of Oak Park before it merged with Beacon Unitarian to form Unity Temple Unitarian Universalist Congregation. What the heck is that symbol? Meat grinder?

submitted by /u/highnumber
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If you like what we post, you can almost literally buy more of it by supporting this ministry financially. The more support we...

12 April 2023 at 19:46
By: I Am UU
If you like what we post, you can almost literally buy more of it by supporting this ministry financially.

The more support we get, the more time we can spend on this and the better tools we can afford to use.

The links are on our Website (if we put them here, it makes the robot angry).

https://iamuu.org/about/can-get-involved/#gifts



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Stewardship is Much More Than Money

12 April 2023 at 13:48
By: I Am UU
Stewardship isn’t, in reality, about money. The money is a tool of stewardship, a way to measure it, but real stewardship is the intention. Stewardship is about the desire to change the world for the better.


In our culture, “Money” is a form of measurement; the time and energy you spend throughout the week is translated into dollars. Dollars are then spent to pay for work; buying the time a…

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Is UU the same as The Unity Church?

Just curious. A family member sent me some material on the Unity Church…which I’m interested in actually.

submitted by /u/pleportamee
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Anyone seen LOST?

12 April 2023 at 14:13

I don't know if this applies to this sub, but LOST was a show that incorporated themes of religion/spirituality, free will, destiny, science, philosophy, synchronicities, mythology, demigods, elements of consciousness, quantum physics, magical elements, dreams/visions, it's own Source, and a whole lot more.

If anyone has any thoughts on it, feel free to post them.

submitted by /u/Stunning_Structure73
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Anyone seen LOST?

I don't know if this applies to this sub, but LOST was a show that incorporated themes of religion/spirituality, free will, destiny, science, philosophy, synchronicities, mythology, demigods, elements of consciousness, quantum physics, magical elements, dreams/visions, it's own Source, and a whole lot more.

If anyone has any thoughts on it, feel free to post them.

submitted by /u/Stunning_Structure73
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Fierce Love (04/09/23 Sermon) - White Bear Unitarian Universalist Church (WBUUC) Sermons

Watch the Service: To enable YouTube provided closed-captioning while viewing the service, click the “CC” icon on the bottom bar of your YouTube video player.    

“Ours is not the task of fixing the entire world all at once, but of stretching out to mend the part of the world that is within...

11 April 2023 at 10:49
By: I Am UU
“Ours is not the task of fixing the entire world all at once, but of stretching out to mend the part of the world that is within our reach. Any small, calm thing that one soul can do to help another soul, to assist some portion of this poor suffering world, will help immensely”
~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés



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An honest review of my recent experience with a local UU Congregation.

I'm going to preface this by saying that if you've visited one UU Congregation you've only experienced one UU Congregation. I get that no 2 are exactly alike, and most aren't even necessarily similar. I want to say that before I get into this.

So, my wife and (up until today) had been members of one of our local UU Congregations for a little over a year. (January was the 1 year annieversary of us becoming members, though we had started attending several months prior to becoming members.) Everything, we though, was going really well. That's why we became members, afterall.

But then, last spring, some issues started to arise for us. It started with a Master Planning Committee and the congregation wanting to rennovate the church building. There seemed to be two minds about what needed to be done. There were those of us who wanted to fix the accessibility issues that exists within the current building (For example, the church has multiple levels, there are stairs up to the sanctuary, there are stairs to the basement where a lot of the meeting spaces are, there really is like no main floor to this place, there are like 5 different levels, it's crazy. So real issues for folks with even minor mobility issues. And folks who are hard of hearing are having issues hearing the sermon, stuff like that.) and to update the building to help us better live out our faith. (Add a shower, add a washer and dryer, add an ADA compliant restroom, add gender neutral restrooms, make modificationst to allow us to shelter those experincing homelessness, stuff like that.) And then there were folks who wanted to make cosmetic changes to the building. One big one being the restoration of the sanctuary facade, this large midcentury facade that is this whole wall in the sanctuary.

This facade became a pretty big issue. The congregation was hoping to raise $1 million for the whole project to finance these renovations. The original sticker price on the restoration of the facade was $300,000. Well, as we got further along into this process, the price doubled. Restoring this facade, and making no other rennovations, was now going to run north of $600,000. And the congregation was going to have to decide what to do. Well, they decided to plow ahead with the full restoration of this facade. (To be 100% fair, the facade was a big sturctural issue. But! There were other options. Like replacing the facade with a traditional standard wall.) So now, more than 60% of the expected money to be raised was going to this one project that wasn't going to fix any of the real issues we discussed that needed to be fixed. And now no money is planned to be spent making the improvements that would allow us to better live out our professed faith and values.

To boot, while all of this is going on, we have our annual church meeting about the budget. A proposal from the floor comes up to give the ministers and church staff a 5% cost of living raise. (Keep in mind, even with this raise they're actually still going to be making less because inflation is greather than 5%.) Much is made about the fact that this will cause the budget to be unblanaced and we'll have a budget deficit. (All while people are making pledges to finance the restoration of this facade. Folks are willing to give the money to restore this facade but not to give a cost of living raise to church staff? What's that about?) So, this whole thing is really causing me to second guess my decision to be a member here and whether or not this congregations' values are what they say they are.

Well, summer comes and our minister is going on a sabbatical at the end beginning of September. Before she leaves, a letter is sent out from her to the congregation. In this letter she reveals that several months ago she had challenged the board to address instances of Islamophobia that she's experienced at church from members of the congregation that she's informed them of. (She is a woman of Iranian descent and is visibly so.) The implication being that they haven't yet done so, and indeed it turns out they had not. I'm shocked by this revelation. I wait patiently for the board or one of the various other leadership committees or the sabbatical minister to address this. Nothing happens. Months pass. So, in late November I email the board about this situation. Ask why nothing has been said or done. Our minister has been subjected to bigotry and intolerance at church, they've been informed, they've been asked to act, they're not acting. Why?

Well, the sabbatical minister asks to meet with me. I meet with her. One of the things I said was "Our board lacks the courage of convicition to even issue a statement condemning Islamophobia?!" She takes this idea as a suggestion to the board. By late December they finally issue a statement condemning Islamophobia. (Which is, in all honesty, the bear freaking minimum. It took them from late August when the letter went out to late December to issue a simple statement condemning Islamophobia.)

I'm going to add that I was participating in this group's CUUPs group. Before the minister went on sabbatical she asked us to do the Samhain service on 10/30. We were happy to do this because we had just reorganized the group and this would serve as a good re-introduction to the congregation. We do an ancester communion ritual, invite members of the congregation to bring pictures of lost loved ones, we include the names of some recent members of the congregation who passed away in the ritual, goes really well I thought. Well, afterwards a board member approaches me and thanks me for keeping the ritual "reasonable" and proceedes to tell me how some previous iteration of the group had worn robes, and had staffs, and etc. I was floored. Imagine coming up to someone who performed a personalized and meaningful service for the congregation and telling them that a more full and complete expression of their faith practice would be unreasonable and unwelcomed? So, I say that to say that I too had experienced religious intolerance from this board.

Our minister's sabbatical ran through the beginning of January. She comes back, immediately announces that she is resigning and goes into detail about why. The previously alleged instances of Islamophobia are given greater explanation. Well, crap really hits the fan as a result. This overwhelmingly white and overwhelmingly older congregation loses it. They get super defensive. They deny, deny, deny, deny these allegations of Islamophobia.

The congregation is basically split in two now. Those who believe the former minister was wronged and those who don't. (In fact, the board issued a statement following her resignation in which they say "How do we care for those who were hurt by Rev.(redacted) and also embrace those who feel she was wronged." Pay attention to that language used there. It is a fact that the former minister allegations of Islamophobia hurt members of the congregation, but the rest of us only "feel" that the minister was wronged. To me it was unbelievable.

So, as you can imagine, tensions have ran white hot in the aftermath of this. White older members of the congregation post in the church's Facebook group about how they've never seen, heard, experienced, or witnessed any Islamophobia or phobia or any other kind at this Church. Meanwhile, POC and other religious minorities (such as myself, a pagan) within the congregation who speak up and talk about what we have experienced in the way of intolerance, microaggresions, xenophobia, are told that it isn't intolerant, racist, bigoted, etc, or told we are blowing it out of proportion, making more of it than it is, or have it denied altogether.

The powers that be in the congregation simply will not listen to those who try to talk about where, when, and how we have been hurt, marginalized, offended, or belittled by the church as a whole or specific members within the congregation. They do not want to hear any experiences that might be negative. Which makes it impossible to learn or grow from.

As a result of all of this, today my wife and I resigned from membership at this church.

I tell this story here not to attack or criticize UUism as a whole. But to recount my personal experience with a UU church over the last year and some change. Hopefully other UUs can learn from this. Learn what not to do when someone says that something isn't right at church, that they've been racially abused, when they've experienced religious intolerance, when they've been hurt by church. Please listen to folks. Please don't dismiss them. Don't gaslight them. Don't tell them it didn't happen. Or that they didn't mean to hurt you so it's okay.

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❌