This series of articles on the Seven Principles of Unitarian Universalism reflects the understanding and priorities of one Unitarian Universalist.
6. The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all.
For many Unitarian Universalists, close friends in their local congregation are a chosen family—a circle of like-minded people who share the same values, passions and goals. Sometimes a chosen family can be an even greater source of mutual support and inspiration than a person’s biological family.
As you discover new ways to put Unitarian Universalist principles into practice, you may find your sense of “family” broadening into your local community. For example, social justice work is often done in partnership with people from other organizations and religious communities to make your city or state a better place for everyone to live.
Working with others who share your passions builds a strong camaraderie—one that makes theological and cultural differences fade into the background. When people pursue shared goals, their diversity becomes a source of strength.
There are also opportunities to extend your “family” into the broader Unitarian Universalist faith community, on the district and national level, in the area of social justice and many others.
The Sixth Principle calls on Unitarian Universalists to broaden their sense of community to its fullest expression: to the point where we see everyone in the world as family, regardless of nationality, culture, or even ideology. The Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC) works for rights in humanitarian crises, civil liberties, economic justice, and environmental justice around the world. Volunteering your skills and financial support to the UUSC are practical, meaningful ways to practice the Sixth Principle.
This week, seven Unitarian Universalist doctors and nurses are working in Haiti to help those suffering from medical and psychological traumas in the aftermath of the earthquake. You can read about their progress on the JustWorks blog. You can volunteer for a skills-oriented trip to Haiti here.
There are seven principles which Unitarian Universalist congregations affirm and promote:
- The inherent worth 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.