UUMH is a Unitarian Universalist congregation. One of the most striking features of Unitarian Universalism is the fact that our liberal religious movement does not impose a creed, or set of common beliefs, about spiritual matters. Rather, UUs believe that each individual has the privilege and responsibility to build his or her own personal theology – along with a responsibility to interact with other people and the world around us in a compassionate and ethical manner. We often say that ours is a faith of deeds, not creeds.
UUs come from Jewish, Christian, Hindu, Buddhist, Muslim, and other backgrounds. They may be theists, atheists, or agnostics. Politically, they may be conservatives, moderates, or liberals. Over the years, UUs have been prominent in major movements of ideological and social reform, such as the Civil Rights movement. That heritage inspires and challenges us.
The Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) is an organization of more than 1,000 UU congregations (including UUMH Chatham) in the United States and Canada. The UUA has enunciated seven key principles and sources of inspiration for UUs, as follows:
We, the member congregations of the Unitarian Universalist Association, covenant to affirm and promote:
• The inherent worth and dignity of every person;
• Justice, equity, and compassion in human relations;
• Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;
• A free and responsible search for truth and meaning;
• The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large;
• The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all;
• Respect for the interdependent web of all existence, of which we are a part.
The living tradition, which we share, draws from many sources:
• Direct experience of that transcending mystery and wonder, affirmed in all cultures, which moves us to a renewal of the spirit and an openness to the forces which create and uphold life;
• Words and deeds of prophetic women and men which challenge us to confront powers and structures of evil with justice, compassion, and the transforming power of love;
• Wisdom from the world’s religions which inspires us in our ethical and spiritual life;
• Jewish and Christian teachings which call us to respond to God’s love by loving our neighbors as ourselves;
• Humanist teachings which counsel us to heed the guidance of reason and the results of science, and warn us against idolatries of the mind and spirit.
• Spiritual teachings of earth-centered traditions which celebrate the sacred circle of life and instruct us to live in harmony with the rhythms of nature.
Grateful for the religious pluralism which enriches and ennobles our faith, we are inspired to deepen our understanding and expand our vision. As members of free congregations, we promise to one another our mutual trust and support. The UUA website, www.uua.org, is an excellent source of additional information about Unitarian Universalism.
Vision Statement of the Unitarian Universalist Meeting House
We, the Members and Friends of the Unitarian Universalist Meeting House, strive:
To apply Unitarian Universalist principles in our daily living, social actions, and community service;
To nurture a safe community that encourages intellectual, spiritual, and religious freedom and celebrates all the passages of life;
To welcome diversity and pluralism as essential for our connection with all humanity;
To provide fellowship, friendship, and fun and to support a creative artistic and musical environment;
To sustain and promote a vital religious, spiritual, life and life-span education program.