#352 | Susannah Sudborough | Scrap most of the proposed changes

Submission 352
Susannah Sudborough
UU Church of Canton (Canton, NY) 6214

What is your suggestion or idea?

My amendment idea is scrap most of the proposed changes. Especially the reduction of principles to one word, the added dogmatic language, and basically all the stuff about ““love.””

What is the reason for your amendment idea?

I am one of the few people who was raised in the church and up until now, I had planned to raise my children in the church. I am 28 years old, a strong progressive, and absolutely unafraid of change.

So let me be unequivocal when I tell you that I believe these changes are awful.

Firstly, the report did not make even close enough to a compelling case for why Article II needs changing, especially not a sufficient case for why it needs this level of change.

Secondly, why add so much religious language like ““ministries”” and ““covenant””? As an atheist, I don’t want to be associated with a church that is unbelievably, in this day and age, some how choosing to turn TOWARDS dogma while the rest of the world is turning away. Not to mention that so many people come to the church to ESCAPE the dogma of other religions.

Thirdly, the principles are written like that for a reason! They were carefully phrased! If you make them into one word, they lose meaning and specificity. The explanation underneath doesn’t help. It clouds the original intent AND gives people more to read to understand it, which is the opposite of your stated goal.

Fourthly, this insertion of ““love”” as the center of everything makes me want to puke. It reminds me of that scene in Donnie Darko where the teacher wants the students to put everything on a spectrum of ““love”” vs ““fear.”” Life is more complicated. Also, the way you’ve spelled this part out is a specific worldview that I think MANY UUs would not agree with, so to add it would be to impose it on everyone.

I truly believe you will drive people away with these changes.

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

I haven’t discussed it but I’ve read others discuss the proposed changes.

1 Like

I keep hearing that the changes are more attractive to young people. When I’ve asked how, a specific response has not been given.

Thank you for this post, Susannah Sudborough. Your phrasing is bolder than I could manage but I agree in large part. I care about not driving people away, very much so, but beyond that, I care about being forthright and plain-spoken. The A2SC proposal moves in another direction, a direction that I don’t think works for our communities.

Katherine Hyde

This is the best and most coherent discussion I have read explaining what I think about the new values (I don’t care for them) and why I strongly would like to preserve the principles. I agree with the loss of explicit humanism in the revisions and with the increasing religious language. Nearly every objection that I had is thoughtfully explained here.Thank you, Susannah

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I agree. These changes don’t speak to me. But worse, the whole process of these proposed changes to article 2 has felt terrible. I may end up walking away from UU if this trend continues.