#287 | Bill Jordan | Prevent Audit, Review, & Punishment

Submission 287
Bill Jordan
Unitarian Universalist Church of Akron (Fairlawn, OH) 6733

What is your suggestion or idea?

State very clearly in Article II (not just the Article II reference to congregational polity) that no congregation or individual will be subjected to any sort of audit, review, punishment, or other action (including recertification) in connection with the covenants or other provisions of Article II.

What is the reason for your amendment idea?

The greatest fear among many of my UU colleagues at home and around the country is that the UUA has been consolidating power in Boston for the last several year and is determined to enforce a new dogma on all UU congregations. You would enhance the chances of passing the changes (which I oppose) if you make absolutely clear that there will be no such review of or action taken against congregations. Assurances by UUA personnel are not enough. We don’t trust them. We need it clear in writing.

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, who share my concern.


I agree with everything stated here.

See Russ Arujo’s proposed amendment

I agree that this clear statement is important.

@Rpace Can you provide the amendment number for Russ Arujo’s proposed amendment? I am not finding it.

#19 Add paragraph to C2.4

ummm…as a UU in a small congregation in Canada…is there some kind of power struggle going on in Boston to revamp UU???
Is there need to heavily state and protect a freedom for members and congregations to be free from audit, review and punishment???
This process has caused stress and distress so far, but if the article 2 stuff has been prompted by some kind of deeper power struggle, you can add acute consternation to my list.

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I too have heard UU members express concern that the UUA is forcing dogma, and that individual search for truth and meaning is being erased. I doubt that there is any intentional plan to do this, but the weak justifications for erasing the 7 principles (not poetic, too hard to say, change is good, etc) are quite stunning and tone deaf to the UU membership that has embraced these principles for many years.

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Yes, there is such a struggle. The powers that be (including our minister) deny this, but all the facts point toward centralized control in Boston and ultimately audits/reviews of congregations’ implementation of the covenants being forced upon them. The incoming President said last year, “covenant without consequences is not actually covenant.” She will have six years to implement that view.

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It is hard to know for sure, but some people do feel that there is an attempt to centralize power in the top levels of the UUA (i.e., Boston), after the dismantling of the districts, the disregard of the instructions of the delegates (divestment has been discovered to be very incomplete since the 2014 resolution, and the explicit rejection of a single candidate for UUA president, followed by the Nominating Committee presenting one candidate for UUA president [and mention of a withdrawn “second candidate”, never named.])

Note re amendments that weren’t prioritized or presented: This forum is closing for comment tomorrow, but our lay-led public Facebook group, Blue Boat Passengers, will remain open for another few weeks for commenting (and still be viewable after that).

People who want to find others to coordinate about the 15-congregation amendment process may use the group to do so while it is open. There’s now a specific post for this in the group (“A post for those wishing to do the 15-congregation amendment process to coordinate”). Please read both the rules and the pinned post before posting or commenting there.


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