A weekly guide to stories about Unitarian Universalists from other media sources
Attorneys for the city of Lenexa, Kansas, and the Shawnee Mission UU Church have presented arguments to U.S. District Judge Daniel Crabtree. At issue is the city’s denial of the congregation’s proposal to allow Project 1020 to operate a cold-weather shelter in their building, a former elementary school. Barb McEver, a cofounder of Project 1020, said, “In my mind, it’s just so simple. People need to know they matter, and I think that is the first start.” McEver said, “I want to provide an environment where they come in and they feel some reprieve, they feel welcome, and they feel like they matter.” An unnamed Project 1020 client, who hopes to find long term shelter in the church’s building, said about homelessness that it is “a hellish existence. . . . It consumes you when you don’t know where you’re going to stay the next night.” While he considers the parties’ arguments, Judge Crabtree urged them to consider the falling temperatures and work together to find a satisfactory solution. (Shawnee Mission Post, December 6)
The Morristown Unitarian Fellowship in Morristown, New Jersey, recently celebrated the completion of the first phase of a larger renovation project—a more accessible parking lot. The congregation’s minster, the Rev. Alison Miller, said, “Now, our physical property is a better match to our welcoming ideals, including people along the disability/ability continuum and people of all ages—elders and children. . . . We are a mansion with our gates open wide to all who seek inspiration, connection, and opportunities to serve the world.” (New Jersey Hills, December 6)
Government officials and advocacy groups gathered to announce a roadmap for helping 250,000 low-income New Jersey families “go solar” by 2030. Nancy Griffeth of UU FaithAction New Jersey said, “Low-income communities and communities of color have suffered repeatedly from the environmental damage done by fossil fuels, from particulate matter in the air to heat stress in the summer. . . . We call on the New Jersey legislature to move as quickly as possible to reduce emissions from fossil fuels to improve the health of our citizens. In addition, they should guarantee jobs in the solar industry and give minority businesses real opportunities to engage in the development of renewable energy.” (Insider NJ, December 9)
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The Rev. Heather Christensen writes “The Interdependent Web,” UU World’s weekly guide to Unitarian Universalist blogs. She lives with her partner Liesl and their two young children in Bellingham, Washington.
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