If you’re new to Unitarian Universalism, you may find it unlike any faith you’ve encountered before. The following Q&A may help answers some of the most common questions you may have, and the collection of resources beneath the FAQ, can provide additional insight in our faith.
What do UUs believe?
We are a non-creedal church — “Deeds, not creeds,” as the saying goes. We try to live by 7 principals:
- 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.
Are you a Christian church?
Our religion developed from a liberal Judeo-Christian heritage going back to the 16th century in eastern Europe, and rooting in America in the mid-18th century. Today, Unitarian Universalism draws from wisdom from the world’s religions, humanist teachings about the use of science and reason, and guidance from earth-centered traditions.
Does your faith tell me what I’m supposed to believe?
You will hear a variety of views and opinions from our pulpit. It’s up to you to determine where your path leads, and what is true in your life.
Is Unitarian Universalism a “real” religion?
We are a nationally recognized, tax-exempt religious organization , and more than one thousand congregations make up the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA).
I don’t know if I believe in “God.” Am I still welcome to attend your worship services?
Yes! Our members have a wide divergence of ideas about God. Some of our members are atheist, some believe in a traditional Christian concept of God, some find the presence of God in the natural world, along with many other ideas. Unitarian Universalism welcomes spiritual exploration in all its forms.
My partner and I are an interfaith couple. Are we welcome?
Many of our members are interfaith couples. We affirm both of their faith backgrounds in our congregation.
Are children welcome in your worship services? What activities do you have for them? I have an infant, is that OK?
Children are a vital part of our Spirit of Life community. Children join the adults in the sanctuary for the first part of the service. After the children’s story, they go to their classes with their teachers. Parents are always welcome to stay with their children. Infants are welcome either to stay with you in the sanctuary or our nursery, depending on what makes you comfortable. Child care for infants and toddlers is available from 10:00am to noon.
I’m gay/lesbian/bi/transgender. Am I welcome?
Ours is a Welcoming Congregation, meaning we’ve made a formal commitment to welcoming people of all sexual orientations and gender identities. We value and celebrate diversity. Our LGBTQ members are an integral and seamless part of our community.
How do I become a member?
We ask that you attend a few Sunday services to get to know us and learn more about Unitarian Universalism. When you’re ready to join, you sign our Membership Book, acknowledging becoming a part of church community.
What’s involved in being a member?
In our faith membership is an act of significance. It should be an affirmation of the joy and meaning you have found with us. We don’t take membership lightly in our church. Ours is a warm, welcoming and active faith community and when you choose to join you’re expressing a commitment to spiritual exploration and growth as part of our community. The more involved you are in the church – volunteering with different committees, or helping with hospitality or gardening, participating in our various social and social action groups – the richer your membership experience will be.
Your participation is deeply important to our community. Our church is governed by a board of trustees elected by our members. Sixty days after becoming a member, you are eligible to participate in our congregational meetings where we decide on important issues, vote on budgets, elect members to various boards etc.
Does becoming a member mean that I’m “converting” to Unitarian Universalism?
Unitarian Universalism does not have a concept of conversion. Many of our members view Unitarian Universalism as an additional identity. Ours is an encompassing faith. Many of our members identify themselves as Pagans, Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Jews, Muslims, Humanists, and other belief systems.
Is a financial commitment required of members? If so, what are you going to expect?
There is an expectation that members will make a financial contribution of record. As a self-governed, self-financed congregation, a monetary commitment of your choice is important fiscally, and philosophically, because it acknowledges that there is a value to being part of our community. That said, while a pledge of note is deeply appreciated and valued, a financial contribution is not a condition for becoming a member.
Is it OK for me to casually attend your church and get to know you better, without making any commitment for the time being?
Absolutely. We welcome you to attend Sunday worship with us. We think you will find it meaningful, and we’ll enjoy getting to know you!
To learn more about Unitarian Universalism, visit the links below.
- Green Sanctuary
- Standing on the Side of Love
- Unitarian Universalist Association
- Unitarian Universalist Service Committee
- Florida District of the Unitarian Universalist Association
- West Central Cluster of Unitarian Universalist Congregations in Florida
- UU Legislative Ministry of Florida
- UU World Magazine
- UUA Bookstore