The Mission of your Unitarian Universalist Humanist Association (HUUmanists) is two-fold:
1. Promote a broad acceptance of Humanism in our society, particularly throughout the Unitarian Universalist Association and its congregations; and
2. Provide an active interface between Unitarian Universalists and the secular community.
Your extraordinary Board of Directors and I strive to make sure that all of our initiatives are clearly mission-based.
In December, 2013, Maria Greene, formerly the HUUmanist Association secretary, took on the position of Director of Development and Communication for our Association. Maria is a graduate engineer, an entrepreneur, and an active local leader in the eastern Massachusetts area Humanists and secular groups. Thanks to Maria we now have up-to-date and active communications mechanisms, including a vibrant web and Facebook presence. Activity in our local groups projects and special events have taken off under Maria’s guidance. You will learn about some of the results of her efforts later in this newsletter.
Our relationship with the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) continues to deepen. Maria, HUUmanist board member Lowell Steinbrenner, a few leaders from the non-UU secular community and I are participating in a video conference with members of the UUA staff. This activity is called the “Innovative Learning Circle on Humanism in Unitarian Universalism.” These monthly interactive meetings are sponsored by the UUA Office of Growth Strategies. The “learnings” from these discussions are passed on to UUA leadership for possible action. The most recent session covered the use of religious language and the impediment it may cause in attracting young people to UU congregations. This forum is proving to be an important means to make our case with the right people in the UUA. We’ll keep you posted.
The UUA has joined HUUmanists in supporting Greg Epstein’s Humanist Community Project (HCP). Flagship UU programs such as “Our Whole Lives” may be adapted for use by local secular or Humanist groups through cooperative arrangements with the UUA, HUUmanists, and HCP. HUU Board member, Lowell Steinbrenner and I serve on the HCP Advisory Board. HUUmanists, the UUA, the Unitarian Universalist Funding Panel, and individual UUs have invested over $25,000 total in HCP. It was my pleasure to present Greg with a check for $5, 000 from HUUmanist Association at the Grand Opening of the Humanist Community at Harvard’s “Humanist Hub” in Cambridge , MA. Maria Greene serves as our representative to the HCP project team. This represents a great opportunity to involve UUs in establishing Humanist communities across the country.
Board member Roger Brewin has been on the road spreading the news about UU Humanism and the two social justice projects that he spearheads: Ribbons Not Walls and the Banned Books Project. You can read more about his travels and those projects in separate articles. Roger's energy and goodwill make him a fantastic embassador for UU Humanism.
Board member and author Dr. Bill Murry was honored in April by the UU Church of Worcester, MA with the 2014 Dr. Irving & Annabel Wolfson Award for his contributions to Humanism. Bill gave an inspiring lecture titled “Religious Humanism: Reason and Reverence in an Age of Science”.
Thanks for your continued support of the UU Humanists and I look forward to seeing many of you in person at the UUA General Assembly in June.