A weekly guide to stories about Unitarian Universalists from other media sources.
In its coverage of the recent resignation of Unitarian Universalist Association president Peter Morales, The Washington Post set the demographic makeup of Unitarian Universalists in the context of other American religious denominations: “Despite efforts to change, members of several popular Protestant Christian denominations, including the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod and the United Methodist Church, are more than 90 percent white, according to a 2015 report by the Pew Research Center.” (Washington Post – 4.3.17)
The Religion News Service explored the initial events that led to Morales’s resignation, including UUA Board member Christina Rivera's post alleging racism in hiring at the UUA and the response from the Association’s Leadership Council acknowledging that an in-depth examination of the patterns of institutional racism at work in its practices of leadership was overdue. (Religion News Service – 3.31.17)
The Unitarian Universalist Church of Northern Nevada recently announced it would offer sanctuary in its building to Davie Chavez-Macias, an immigrant facing possible deportation because of a traffic ticket. The minister of the congregation, the Rev. Neal Anderson, said of the decision: “We believe very strongly that we currently have a broken immigration system that unfortunately too often is based upon racialized policies. We as a religious community will stand against that.” (MyNews4.com – 4.2.17)
First Unitarian Universalist Church of Austin, Texas, has offered its church as sanctuary to an immigrant mother and daughter under threat of deportation. This would be the second time in recent years the church sheltered an immigrant in the deportation process. The congregation is part of the Austin Sanctuary Network, which has grown in the last year from a handful of churches to more than two dozen religious groups, three labor unions, several nonprofit groups, and dozens of individual volunteers. (Hutchison News – 4.1.17)
Members of First Parish in Bedford, Massachusetts, voted to offer sanctuary to undocumented immigrants who are at risk of deportation. In providing and publicizing sanctuary, the church hopes to convince ICE officials to drop any deportation charges placed against an individual. Of the eighteen church sanctuary cases that have been litigated since 2014, all but one was successful in this regard. (Bedford Citizen – 4.3.17)
“Is ICE Trying to End Public Oversight of Detention Conditions?” (Rewire – 3.29.17)
“Why Is ICE Arresting So Many People Without Criminal Records In Weird, Liberal Austin?” (Fusion – 4.4.17)
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Rachel Walden is the communications specialist in the UUA Office of Information and Public Witness.
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