Pared-down General Assembly focuses on vision

Pared-down General Assembly focuses on vision

Join the conversation about Unitarian Universalists’ shared purpose; major speakers will include poet Richard Blanco and antiracism educator Robin DiAngelo.

Richard Blanco; Robin DiAngelo

Poet Richard Blanco and antiracism educator Robin DiAngelo are featured speaker’s at the June 2019 General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association. (Photos courtesy Richard Blanco and © Gabriel Solis)

Courtesy Richard Blanco; © Gabriel Solis


Come to Spokane, Washington, this summer to imagine Unitarian Universalism’s future. The UUA’s General Assembly, June 19–23, offers a pared-down program designed to engage congregational leaders and passionate UUs in conversations about our purpose as a faith community, with the theme “The Power of We.” (See UUA President Susan Frederick-Gray’s invitation.)

Business sessions have been scaled back to just four hours of General Session time to make space for thirteen hours of thematic presentations and workshops, as well as conversations organized by leadership role.

Speakers include two Beacon Press authors: Ware Lecturer Richard Blanco, the gay Cuban-American poet who wrote “One Today” for President Obama’s second inauguration in 2013 and whose book How To Love a Country is forthcoming, and Robin DiAngelo, whose bestseller White Fragility has aided many UU conversations about antiracism.

The Rev. Lindi Ramsden, who founded the UU Justice Ministry of California and serves on the faculty of Starr King School for the Ministry, will preach at the Service of the Living Tradition. The Rev. Marta I. Valentín, minister of the UU Church of Medford, Massachusetts, poet, and denominational counselor at Harvard Divinity School, will preach at the Sunday morning worship service, this GA’s final event. Music leaders include Emily Jaworski, music coordinator; Laura Weiss, band leader; Marty Swisher, choir director; and Peter Storms, accompanist.

This GA implements a new process for Actions of Immediate Witness, the resolutions that delegates have circulated as petitions at past GAs. Delegates voted last year to eliminate the petitions process, miniassemblies, and General Session debates that precede an AIW vote. Delegates this year will also consider a draft Statement of Conscience, “Democracy Uncorrupted”.


Earlier versions of this story, including in the Spring 2019 edition of UU World, included the names of the 2018 GA music leaders.