As Unitarian Universalists Reassess Core Beliefs, Article II Study Commission Reflects on Progress Made

ELAINE MCARDLE  

It’s taken years of hard work, care, and focused effort by dedicated volunteers on the Article II Study Commission to draft a proposal for a new Article II of the Unitarian Universalist Association bylaws, which state the faith’s Principles, Purposes, and Sources.

Co-chairs Rev. Cheryl M. Walker and Rob Spirko say they are proud of the work of the Article II Study Commission. Encouraged by the overwhelming support the proposal received last June, they’re hoping it passes with even greater support at General Assembly 2024 (a two-thirds vote is required to pass).

Over the past several months, they and the other three commissioners have worked to incorporate amendments that passed during GA 2023, and to do a “plain language” review to clarify language without changing any meaning. They met with proposers of some of the amendments to discuss how to tweak language, and they had a legal review of their draft.

In November, the commission presented its Final Proposed Revision to Article II to the UUA Board of Trustees which incorporated those amendments. “So that part of it is out of our hands now,” Walker says.

Though the commissioners have completed their charge, they’re not quite done. They continue to talk with UUs who have questions about the proposal and to encourage congregations to engage in the process.

“We are hearing so many congregations are engaging the question we posed in this, which is: ‘What does it mean to be a Unitarian Universalist?’ That conversation is happening in ways that I’ve never, ever seen us engage before,” Walker says.

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