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Denominational Affairs News

Denominational Affairs

There is always something happening either at the National level of the Unitarian Universalist Association or in the Southern Region of which our congregation is a member. In these times, when our values of hope, love and justice for all are sorely challenged, it is always uplifting to experience UUA gatherings and events; they are terrific opportunities to come away renewed in spirit. Two opportunities you might want to consider:

Spring Regional Event, Saturday April 4 at the Marion County Fellowship in Summerfield, FL., an all-day conference that will provide a wonderful opportunity to come together with other UUs from across Florida for learning, networking, and renewal. In addition to worship and a chance to meet others with similar interests there will be two workshops of special focus. The first is a session specifically designed for those interested in Stewardship and Generosity in our congregations. The other will be a session that builds on our legacy and considers how, as a denomination, we are called to offer an alternative in our communities. Please contact Bonnie Norton at if you are interested in attending this conference. We will arrange carpooling.

Unitarian Universalist Service Committee – UUSC

UUSCGoogle UUSC. The first thing you learn about The Unitarian Universalist Service Committee is that it a nonsectarian human rights organization powered by grassroots collaboration, that it works in 15 countries throughout the world, anywhere rights are threatened – by natural disasters, armed conflicts, genocide, forced migration, and systematic injustice - that it works to ensure fundamental human rights.

You learn that the UUSC is a grant-making organization that goes beyond simply giving grants to promote economic and environmental justice and ensure fundamental human rights; it is powered by grassroots collaboration: it provides volunteers and trains them, it networks to create new coalitions to enhance work of partner organizations (notice that those receiving funds are ‘partners’, not ‘grantees’ ). UUSC began its illustrious work in 1939 when Rev. Waitstill and Martha Sharp took the extraordinary risk of traveling to Europe to help refugees escape Nazi persecution.

These are the goals of the UUSC:
Empower and organize workers to advocate for their rights . F
oster the creation of fair, safe work environments that are free from intimidation and harassment, and where the human rights and dignity of workers are respected
Hold corporations accountable for violations of their workers’ human rights
Advance sexual orientation and gender identity rights in Southern Africa
Decriminalize migration and safeguard the fundamental human right to seek asylum
Provide humanitarian assistance to refugees in transit and document abuses perpetrated by border enforcement authorities
Build organizational capacity of Burmese human rights activists
Ensure that natural disaster relief and reconstruction efforts are guided by the voices and needs of affected communities
Environmental Justice & Climate Action program focuses on advancing and protecting the rights of marginalized populations displaced by climate change. Our focus on this issue arises from the fact that one person per day is displaced by climate change, making it one of the most catastrophic and complex issues of our current generation. UUSC is specifically focused on assisting indigenous populations of the South Pacific and Alaska—two distinct regions of the world that are highly susceptible to rising sea levels and climate induced natural disasters, and whose adaptive capacities are limited by their geographic isolation, their reliance on coastal resources and habitats, and their development limitations.

UUSC is supported by donations, all donations are tax-deductible. Eighty-one cents of every dollar we donate goes toward UUSC’s human rights and social justice programs and those who need it most. Consider becoming a member.