Saturday, February 09, 2008

Why people choose Unitarian Universalism

Again, these thoughts are just that----speculations, theories, possibilities. Your results may vary. To complete the theme, at least for now, here I offer my thoughts about why people choose Unitarian Universalism.

1. They have rejected conservative or mainline religion but want a faith community.

2. They want a religious home that is coherent with their liberal social philosophy.

3. They are looking for a religious home that acts upon its liberal social philosophy.

4. They were born and raised Unitarian Universalist.

5. They marry into Unitarian Universalism after having left another faith.

6. They are freethinkers and are looking for other freethinkers; they have a resistance to orthodoxy.

7. They are spiritual seekers who are looking for a faith community that welcomes all seekers on all paths.

8. They have children who are beginning to ask spiritual and religious questions and want a faith community where answers are not limited to a specific doctrine.

I came to Unitarian Universalism when I became engaged to a man who was UU. We affiliated with a congregation when our son was born. We were both anti-war activists in the 60's and our early experiences with a UU church were in protest marches and rallies. We were both unorthodox thinkers who had come from orthodox backgrounds.

If I had not found Unitarian Universalism through my husband and also some connection with UU volunteers at the agency where I worked, I might well have become a Quaker, because I am so comfortable with their forms of worship and social action.


goodwolve said...

Oh... I am the life long born and raised variety. Wonder how many of us there are?

Miss Kitty said...

A very intersting post, Ms. K. I think the first three might belong to me. I'm not currently attending church--I'm a former Episcopalian who's mighty p.o.'d with the current brouhaha over whether gay people deserve to be in God's kingdom--but have been considering paying D2U City's UU congregation a visit. Thanks for this info!

Robin Edgar said...

So when will you be doing a post about why so few people choose U*Uism Ms. Kitty?

LinguistFriend said...

One reason that there are few UUs is that in most cases the step of becoming one means acknowledging the explicit failure of one's interaction with a previous religion. Once I wrote a sermon "On Becoming a Unitarian-Universalist", written on the basis of a lot of observations in membership work, but it addressed mainly the case of people coming from conservative religions, as friend CC immediately informed me.
My main point was that there many painful adjustments which are not explicitly addressed in the membership process, but make the first steps of UU membership very hard and vulnerable. Ms. Kitty's (expandable) list is useful and implies other issues to be considered.

ms. kitty said...

Thanks, all, for your comments. Miss Kitty, I hope you check out your local UU congregation and let me know what your experience is like.

LF, you've widened my view. Thanks.

Robin, I don't have personal experience on your question, but I will think about it.


Robin Edgar said...

You might want to see what UUA Presidential hopeful Rev. Peter Morales has to say about why so few people choose to become U*Us. There is a sermon about it posted on his Peter Morales for UUA President web site. Click on the Speaking Out link and read his 'Growing Our Movement' sermon. He is saying a good chunk of what I have been saying for years and he is not alll that diplomatic about it either. I find it quite refreshing to see a UUA Presidential candidate describing U*Uism as "a tiny fringe religion" on the home page of their campaign web site. I am not sure how many votes that will win him though. . .