The Social Justice Committee initiates and coordinates outreach activities of First Unitarian Universalist Church in the larger community. These activities are largely determined by the interests of our members. These initiatives can range from one time a year events to ongoing organizational activities.
If you want to receive announcements about upcoming Social Justice events and meetings, send an e-mail to email@example.com. If you do not have access to e-mail, watch the weekly announcements in the church bulletin as well as the monthly church newsletter. Social Justice is a reflection of First Unitarian Universalist members’ interests.
The Social Justice Committee regularly meets the 3rd Sunday of the month at 12:30pm in the Thoreau Building. Members and guests are welcome. See the announcements, the Events Calendar or contact the Chair for more details or information.
Some of the activities and events, or ongoing “portfolios” that our church members are involved with in the larger community include:
- Basura Bash (Annual Riverbank Clean Up, Saturday, February 25, 2012): This is an intergenerational opportunity to witness the San Antonio River ecosystem and the waterways that feed into the San Antonio River, as well as cleaning up debris from the riverbanks.
- Contact: Gale Morrow
- Other events that the Social Justice Team and First Unitarian Universalist members have frequently participated in include the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday March (January), the International Women’s Day March (March), the Cesar Chavez March (March), Gay Pride Picnic, events promoting peace and justice, reproductive rights, concerts raising awareness about the death penalty and the environment, and more.
- COPS/Metro Alliance: A broad-based interfaith community organization dedicated to organizing local citizens and working on a range of issues of concern to our families. Nearly 12% of Unitarian Universalist congregations nationwide are members of similar congregation-based community organizations. To join our email list send a message to MetroAlliancefirstname.lastname@example.org.
- Contact: Mike Phillips or Vicki Tullius
- Greater Edwards Aquifer Alliance (GEAA) and other environmental initiatives: Our congregation is a member of GEAA and monitors policy and actions relating to the Greater Edwards Aquifer and other environmental issues.
- Contact: Gary Ross
- Share the Plate: On the second Sunday of each month since July 2007, our congregation has been contributing money collected through our worship service’s offering, that are not marked for the operating budget or other specific designations, to a non-profit organization that connects to our Unitarian Universalist principles. The program also increases awareness and connections between our congregation and these organizations.
- Contact: Angela Segraves
- Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC): Through a potent combination of advocacy, education and partnerships with grassroots organizations, UUSC supports programs and policies that empower women, defend the rights of children and support the struggles of indigenous people and oppressed racial and ethnic groups. We also provide financial and technical support when disasters strike impoverished areas.
- Contact: Diane Duesterhoeft
Other recent Social Justice initiatives include:
- Creating Peace: 2010 Statement of Conscience of the Unitarian Universalist Association focuses on peacemaking
- Members of our congregation frequently participate in local peacemaking activities
- Contact one of the Social Action Committee Co-Chairs for more information
- Ethical Eating: Food and Environmental Justice
Other First Unitarian Universalist Church initiatives:
- Community Responsibility Endowment Fund (CREF): CREF is one of the tools that our congregation uses to improve life in our community. Each year members of the congregation make donations to the CREF trust fund. It is through the annual donations that the fund grows. The interest earned by the trust is then awarded to local projects which reflect the charitable, religious educational and scientific consideration of this church. These “Flower Power” grants are awarded each spring to worthy projects nominated by members of the congregation.
- Welcoming Congregation: The Welcoming Congregation Program is a completely volunteer program for congregations that see a need to become more inclusive towards bisexual, gay, lesbian, and/or transgender people. It consists of a series of workshops developed by the UUA. The goal of the workshops is to reduce prejudice by increasing understanding and acceptance among people of different sexual orientations. Our congregation became a certified Welcoming Congregation in 2002.
Other Unitarian Universalist-related links:
- Unitarian Universalist Association Social Justice: Information about current social justice issue priorities within the UUA, as well as links to social justice statements and other social justice resources.
“ideas without actions are just dreams”