Final Proposed Revision to Article II, as Completed by the Article II Study Commission in October 2023



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Thank you for posting this, thus providing a place for further conversation about the Proposed Revision as a whole!

The conversation I personally am interested in is between folks who whole-heartedly support the Revision, and folks who still have some concerns.

Maybe we can listen, understand, respect, and respond to one another?

I think my congregation’s support has increased over time, but there are still concerns. I don’t know how they will vote at our May annual meeting. But however they vote, my first job as delegate will be to discern the degree of congruence between the vote and my individual conscience.

Let’s support each other’s discernment process - so that Love supports the growth of our Living Tradition.

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I would like to see Accountability as its own central value, as it is so central to social justice, welcoming, respect, and Beloved Community. The text could also include mention of accountability by leadership in particular to respond to oppression in congregations and work toward our principles and change.

There are also still issues with this process not *sufficiently including input from Canadian congregations who are members of the UUA, or the young adults.

IDK how to reply to the original post, so I am piggybacking here (btw, I see my role as a delegate as you do—represent our membership in alignment with my conscience).

Is there a way to download the 3 pages? I can take screenshots, but presumably they will not blow up to full letter size very clearly.

found it; will add the rest of my thoughts as a new reply.

What I really came here to find was what amendments were proposed by Feb. 1st and which were accepted for inclusion in the GA agenda. The sooner we see those, the sooner we can share and the deeper the discussion—but the elite, who are used to attending in person, might not want that. (BTW, I am one who has attended every GA since 2009, either online or in person, but definitely want to discuss with fellow society members so that our delegate [me or another, not yet determined] can represent us accurately, with nuanced input to navigate the changes that last week without scrambling during a really busy time).

Hi Sally, Five amendments were proposed and four met the 15+ threshold by 11:59pm ET on Feb. 1–the two Equity ones, which dovetail with each other, plus Reason and Peace.

My congregation’s 7 Principles as Preamble amendment got 13—SO close! Here it is in marked version–we use “worthiness” not “worth”, and it’s compatible with the four that did make it. It is intended as an expansion or gloss on the meaning of “love” and “foundation” in Section C-2.2 Values and Covenant. Changes are to lines 15 and 16:

13 Section C-2.2. Values and Covenant.
14 As Unitarian Universalists, we covenant, congregation-to-congregation and through our
15 Association, to support and assist one another in our ministries. [DELETE: We] [INSERT: As UU congregations, we] draw from our heritages of
16 freedom, reason, hope, and courage, building on the foundation of love [INSERT: and principles that continue to nourish us, including:
The inherent worthiness 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].

I note that my congregation, Unitarian Society of Ridgewood (NJ), uses “UU congregations” in line 15. This is a nod to the “UU” designation, and underscores that the statements are being made by congregations as opposed to individuals.

BTW too late to change my name, and no, thankfully I’m not related to Henry Hyde, but can’t help wondering if having to call this the Hyde amendment was, uh, unhelpful. Although someone was kind enough to refer to it as “the good Hyde amendment,” I’ll take it!

Thanks, Katherine! I tend to use “CFS” (congregation/fellowship/society), as Central Unitarian is a society; there is only one use of the word congregation in our constitution, many references to us as a society. However, most UUA materials refer to congregations, which is O.K.

Sally

| KHyde Katherine Hyde
February 14 |

  • | - |

Hi Sally, Five amendments were proposed and four met the 15+ threshold by 11:59pm ET on Feb. 1–the two Equity ones, which dovetail with each other, plus Reason and Peace.

My congregation’s 7 Principles as Preamble amendment got 13—SO close! Here it is in marked version–we use “worthiness” not “worth”, and it’s compatible with the four that did make it. It is intended as an expansion or gloss on the meaning of “love” and “foundation” in Section C-2.2 Values and Covenant. Changes are to lines 15 and 16:

13 Section C-2.2. Values and Covenant.
14 As Unitarian Universalists, we covenant, congregation-to-congregation and through our
15 Association, to support and assist one another in our ministries. [DELETE: We] [INSERT: As UU congregations, we] draw from our heritages of
16 freedom, reason, hope, and courage, building on the foundation of love [INSERT: and principles that continue to nourish us, including:
The inherent worthiness 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].

I note that my congregation, Unitarian Society of Ridgewood (NJ), uses “UU congregations” in line 15. This is a nod to the “UU” designation, and underscores that the statements are being made by congregations as opposed to individuals.

BTW too late to change my name, and no, thankfully I’m not related to Henry Hyde, but can’t help wondering if having to call this the Hyde amendment was, uh, unhelpful. Although someone was kind enough to refer to it as “the good Hyde amendment,” I’ll take it!

We were wondering if discussions had gone differently some 20 years ago maybe this concept of Values and Covenant would not seem so strange that has upset some UUs. The UUA Board asked the UUA Commission on Appraisal (COA) to undertake a thorough review of UUA bylaw Art II, a regularly scheduled action we delegates had approved to keep Art II current so that the Principles will not become dogma and/or doctrine. I do remember well that I and others implored COA to consider revising the UUA Principles into forward looking statements as we have been using such (Mission Vision) for many years. Sadly, when we got to the SLC 2009 GA, we found a weak Art II makeover which we delegates could not amend. The UUA Board promised to bring a bylaw change to next year’s GA that would allow amendments (which is being used now) and we turned that Art II revision down by 13 votes. I feel that if we had updated Art II then with forward looking Principles (like the 2017 8th Principle proposal) we would be having a better discussion now.

GA 2009 was my first GA; I had no information before arriving other than what I read on the plane in the actual paper program book that used to be mailed out (sad that this is no longer an option, though I understand the justification). I was one of those voting No, as I did not have enough positive information to vote for such a big change (particularly as I was representing my society) and I preferred the older language.

Communication has been somewhat better this time, though it does not seem to get far outside the ”GA bubble”—itself reduced years ago by the ending of the e-mail list (still many list topics active here, but the GA list was discontinued). The first iteration of online discussion was much less used than this one, though the quick lockdown of these pages after last year’s GA was not helpful. I personally do what I can to forward information and point people here to discuss, but official communication from the UUA itself goes to an individual at each CFS (congregation/fellowship/society), and IDK how many are forwarded further (I personally never see them, and have heard from others that that is the case for them as well). UU World has been cut to 2 issues from 4 annually, and no longer prints Letters to the Editor, apparently for fear of controversy. I do subscribe to and forward the weekly GA e-mail; that is a good step forward, but that is basically one-way communication.

If we were to call these Mission and Vision, I would understand what to expect; however, those are different from Principles (Mission is substantially equivalent to Purpose, but Principles, Vision, and Values are all different [though principles and values are similar, they are not really the same). Maybe part of the issue is a square peg/round hole situation? Yes, the more I research “principles vs values”, the more I realize that this is an issue: Principles vs. Values - What's the Difference? | This vs. That.