Our congregations are only starting to embrace what we teach our children.
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I have been practicing our faith my whole life. This I can say for certain: Our faith is not an easy one to practice! It demands that we be in constant awareness of and dialogue with the world. Unitarian Universalism requires religious engagement, not just when it is convenient or easy, but in every moment. Through our focus on community and covenant, we learn that the holy takes place in our connections to and with one another.
Unitarian Universalism saves lives. This I know from personal experience, as it has saved my life time and time again. Yet Unitarian Universalism has also caused me some of my greatest heartache. At times, there seems to be a disconnect between the church school lessons I learned as a youngster and how we adults live out our UU values.
The Unitarian Universalism of my childhood taught me that with diversity comes strength; that through embracing our differences we can better understand the world around us. My years working with adults as a workshop facilitator and religious educator have taught me that more often than not, this is more theory than practice. But I have witnessed congregations make tremendous progress in embracing this diversity and changing their practices in order to accommodate a beloved member of their community. My hope is that we are willing to change in order to greet all with open hearts, not just those who are already among us.
May we continue to engage in holy discourse around diversity and affirmation. May we continue to share our presence with the world, showing that it is possible to embrace the pluralistic nature of life.
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Mr. Barb Greve is was appointed co-moderator of the Unitarian Universalist Association, with Elandria Williams, on August 1, 2017. A Master-level credentialed religious educator, Greve received a Master of Divinity degree from Starr King School for the Ministry and works as an interim religious educator. He is one of the cofounders of TRUUsT (Transgender Religious Unitarian Universalists Together) and a tri-founder of the Guild of Interim Religious Educators.
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