Surprising people

Surprising people

All sorts of creative ways one can live out Unitarian Universalist values.


I can’t wait for you to dive into this issue. My colleagues have assembled a magazine full of surprising people who demonstrate all sorts of creative ways one can live out Unitarian Universalist values.

You’ll meet Alex Gramling, a Massachusetts UU who gave away a Christmas tree one year and was struck by how meaningful it was to the recipient—so he founded a nonprofit that will give away at least 1,000 trees in six states this winter to families in need.

You’ll meet Elizabeth Mount, a UU seminarian who spent 40 hours suspended from the St. Johns Bridge in Portland, Oregon, as part of a Greenpeace USA action to disrupt a Shell Oil ship headed for exploratory drilling in the Arctic Ocean.

You’ll meet Natalie Fedak, a young filmmaker in Washington State whose fantasy webseries After Foreveris also an experiment in environmentally sustainable moviemaking.

You’ll meet members of a Massachusetts congregation who keep returning to New Orleans each year to volunteer in that city’s rebuilding, a decade after Hurricane Katrina.

You’ll meet the Rev. Julie Taylor, a white UU minister who has been a chaplain and activist in the protest movement in Ferguson, Missouri, since Michael Brown’s death in August 2014.

And you’ll meet Lydia Maria Child, the nineteenth-century Unitarian writer and activist whose famous song—“Over the river and through the woods, to Grandmother’s house we go”—obscures her work as an abolitionist.

Other articles show how UU partnerships, especially in racial justice movements, are transformative. Our cover story, by the Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II, describes the growing Moral Mondays movement he leads in North Carolina; a news story highlights UU involvement in Barber’s coalition. Kenny Wiley offers five steps for UUs who want to get involved in the Black Lives Matter movement; Elaine McArdle reports that people are vandalizing UU churches’ Black Lives Matter banners. And a multigenerational group of UUs of color discusses Ta-Nehisi Coates’s riveting book about race in America, Between the World and Me.

Cover of Winter 2015 UU World Magazine

Table of Contents, Winter 2015 (Cover image © Brian Stauffer/

© 2012 Brian Stauffer/