#275 | Bill Jordan | Revert to Existing Principles and Sources

Submission 275
Bill Jordan
UU Church of Akron, Ohio

What is your suggestion or idea?

Replace Section C-2.2, Values and Covenant, with the existing language of the 7 Principles and 6 Sources.

What is the reason for your amendment idea?

The new formulation, with the various covenants, turns UUism on its head. The current proposal purports to incorporate most of the 7 Principles, but it does so in a way that makes them subsidiary to vaguely stated values, and it distorts the principles in the process.

The statement, ““We covenant to learn from one another in our free and responsible search for truth and meaning”” is unacceptable The crucial point is that we all, as individuals, have a right to pursue a ""free and responsible search for truth and meaning. I trust that we will learn from others. Certainly that proposition is inherent in the First Principle, but how we do that and whether we commit to it is a choice for each congregation and individual. It cannot be imposed by the UUA or by GA. If you do not leave these and other choices to individuals, you will lose them.

I will address other specifics later, but as a general point, I urge deletion of all covenants other than that currently stated in Article II. These covenants impose various duties on all congregations and entities regardless of their size, character, or interests. It’s a one-size-fits-all approach, profoundly contrary to the essence of Unitarian Universalism.

Moreover, the GA has no authority to impose these covenants. Covenants are agreements between entities. The congregations agreed to our single core covenant upon joining the UUA. We did not agree, however to be subjected to an entirely different governing structure or a set of required actions or beliefs. That would require an entirely separate convention, with each congregation able to ratify, or not, much as the states did in the transition from the Articles of Confederation to the Constitution.

Have you discussed this idea with your congregation or other UUs?

Not with the congregation as a whole. We have been prevented from having discussion about anything that might undermine or question the proposed revisions to Article II. Yes, I have discussed with these issues with fellow UUs, all of whom are deeply concerned that the UUA has been and continues to centralize control in Boston, with the apparent goal of auditing and otherwise reviewing the congregations to assure they comply with the UUAs new gospel, which many of them do not share.

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