Media roundup: UU church sues to install solar panels

Media roundup: UU church sues to install solar panels

A weekly guide to stories about Unitarian Universalists from other media sources.

Rachel Walden

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First Parish in Bedford, Massachusetts, is suing the town for the right to install solar panels on its property. Citing the Unitarian Universalist Association’s requirements for achieving Green Sanctuary status, First Parish argues that the town’s Historic District Commission is violating the church’s right to freely exercise their religious beliefs by denying the necessary certification for installing the panels. ( ThinkProgress.org – 8.3.16)

White UUs remain steadfast allies

After learning that black church members didn’t feel comfortable attending the local county fair in part because of a booth that sold Confederate flag merchandise, members of Champlain Valley Unitarian Universalist Society in Middlebury, Vermont, started a petition to put an end to such sales at the fair. They obtained more than 600 signatures in one week. Fair organizers will no longer allow the sale of Confederate flag merchandise. ( VT Digger – 8.4.16)

As the Black Lives Matter movement grows, the role of white allies has become more widespread and less prominent. In an effort to check their white privilege, white allies are working to be responsive in showing up for demonstrations, but decline to be spokespeople for the events. As Church of the Larger Fellowship senior minister Meg Riley indicated in response to media inquiries around recent protests in the Minneapolis, Minnesota, area, “We refer you to any of the great black leaders locally!” ( Star Tribune – 8.2.16)

Unitarian documentary generates buzz

At the PBS portion of the annual summer Television Critics Association press tour, documentary filmmaker Ken Burns was joined by Artemis Joukowsky to answer questions about their collaborative project, Defying the Nazis: The Sharps’ War. The film tells the story of Unitarians Martha and the Rev. Waitsill Sharp, who rescued hundreds of Jewish children from Nazi-occupied Europe on the eve of World War II. ( Current.org – 7.29.16)

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