Do you have to be an activist to be a Unitarian Universalist?

Six leaders reflect on activism and religious identity in a racially and politically charged era.

TAKIYAH NUR AMIN, ROBIN BARTLETT, RANWA HAMMAMY, PAUL RASOR, MARILYN SEWELL, PAMELA WAT | 1/8/2018 | WINTER 2017

Introduced and convened by Kenny Wiley and Christopher L. Walton

Unitarian Universalism’s public focus has shifted notably in the last three years, as UUs have engaged the Movement for Black Lives, the New Sanctuary Movement, and most recently the resistance movement that is challenging the policies and politics of the Trump administration. While it’s true that UUs have been active in justice movements for decades, it seems to us that UU leaders and many congregations have embraced justice work as central to our movement in ways not seen in a long time—and in ways that some UUs are experiencing as unsettling or disruptive.

We are seeing, through letters to the editor and in online and in-person dialogue, that some UUs are responding to this new focus with excitement, some with relief that we are finally living out what they see as our calling. Others are expressing caution, frustration, or alarm.

We reached out to six UU leaders with diverse perspectives to invite responses to four questions about prophetic ministry and activism within contemporary Unitarian Universalism: Takiyah Nur Amin, a member of the Church of the Larger Fellowship and the Black Lives of Unitarian Universalism organizing collective; Robin Bartlett, senior pastor of First Church in Sterling, Massachusetts; Ranwa Hammamy, an elder care chaplain and community minister affiliated with Mt. Diablo UU Church in Walnut Creek, California; Paul Rasor, theologian and law professor at the University of Groningen, the Netherlands, and author of Reclaiming Public Witness: Liberal Religion in the Public SquareMarilyn Sewell, minister emerita of First Unitarian Church of Portland, Oregon, and author most recently of Raw Faith; and Pamela Wat, minister of the Denton, Texas, UU Fellowship. READ MORE HERE.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *