How is Unitarian Universalism distinctive from other traditions?

  • We teach that your faith is not measured by how hard you believe, but by how closely your actions match your principles. One’s character is the real test of one’s faith. We are a church in which the scientist and the mystic can find a common sense of the holy and agree that knowledge of the natural world can enhance one’s sense of the spiritual. We teach that Jesus, Moses, Buddha, and Mohammed, among others, were great spiritual leaders because of the ethics they taught and lived. We are a congregation which teaches that doubt, skepticism, and rigorous inquiry are tools of faith, not barriers to faith. We believe love, nurture, self-respect, and kindness are the best tools for producing moral and ethical behavior in children.

  • We are encouraged by our faith to be socially responsible.

  • We affirm your right to choose the spiritual path that speaks to your heart.

  • We reject any form of discrimination that punishes or excludes people based on race, religion, gender, age, disability, class, or affectional orientation.

  • We affirm that the insights of science, psychology, and sociology as well as the beauty and wisdom found in art, poetry, music, literature, and world religions deepen and strengthen our moral and spiritual lives.

  • We teach that human beings have free will and the capacity to choose between good and evil. We also affirm that we should support institutions that encourage and enable people to choose the good.

  • We teach that death is a natural phenomenon; not punishment for our sins.

  • We teach that while all of the great religious are expressions of the truth, no religion, not even ours, can claim to be in sole possession of the truth.

  • We teach that there is ample reason for hope and optimism. That’s why we form faith communities of memory and hope, to keep optimism alive and to pass it on to our children.

Adapted from Rev. Suzanne Meyer.


Are Unitarian Universalists Christian?

  • Unitarian Universalists are Christian in the sense that both Unitarian and Universalist history are part of Christian history. Our core principles and practices were first articulated and established by liberal Christians beginning in the 1600s. However, many Unitarian Universalists no longer claim Christian identity. Though they may acknowledge the Christian history of our faith and Christ's message, the religious dogma is no longer primary for them. Instead, they draw their personal faith from many sources: nature, intuition, world cultures and religions, science, civil liberation movements, and so on.

Adapted from Rev. Alice Blair Wesley.


Can Unitarian Universalists believe anything they want?

  • No. It might be better to say we believe what we must. Our spiritual vision is guided by the capacity for reason, an openness to scientific insight and knowledge, and a concern for making human relations as peaceful, just and equitable as possible. We accept free will and the inherent worth of all human beings. We see that the world requires first and foremost cooperation and compromise, and ethical and loving relationships. We see that human existence is dependent upon careful stewardship of the planet. That leaves a lot of room for expressing personal spirituality in different ways, but it does preclude certain things. One could not be considered a Unitarian Universalist and believe that subscription to specific doctrines or creeds are necessary for access to God, or to express authentic spirituality, or to enjoy membership in a congregation. A Unitarian Universalist could not believe that God favors any group of people based on any inherent qualities, such as skin color, gender, sexual orientation, physical ability, and so on — or that any group of people is more worthy of access to opportunities than any other as a result of these qualities. We don’t believe that autocratic, undemocratic or overly hierarchical systems are appropriate methods of organizing our congregations or the larger society. Finally, we don’t believe that humanity has the right or moral authority to exploit the environment or other life forms with whom we share this planet.

Adapted from Rev. Alice Blair Wesley.


What do Unitarian Universalists believe?

Unitarian Universalists affirm and promote the following:

  • We promote the freedom of religious expression. All individuals should be encouraged to develop their own personal theology and to openly express their religious opinions without fear of censure or reprisal. We affirm the toleration of religious ideas. We promote the authority of reason and conscience. The ultimate arbiter in religion is not a church, or a document, or an official, but the personal choice and decision of the individual. We promote the never-ending search for truth. If the mind and heart are truly free and open, the revelations which appear to the human spirit are infinitely numerous, eternally fruitful, and wondrously exciting. We affirm that there is no fundamental conflict between faith and knowledge, religion and the world, the sacred and the secular, since they all have their source in the same reality.

    • The worth and dignity of each human being. All people on earth have an equal claim to life, liberty and justice-and no idea, ideal or philosophy is superior to a single human life.

    • The ethical application of religion. Good works are the natural products of a good faith, the evidence of an inner grace that finds completion in social and community involvement.

    • The motivating force of love. The governing principle in human relationships is the principle of love, which always seeks the welfare of others and never seeks to hurt or destroy.

    • The necessity of the democratic process. Records are open to scrutiny, elections are open to members, and ideas are open to criticism — so that people might govern themselves.

    • The importance of a religious community. The validation of experience requires the confirmation of peers, who provide a critical platform along with a network of mutual support.

Adapted from Rev. David O. Rankin.


Why join a Unitarian Universalist congregation?

  • To worship together with open hearts and minds, seeking what is sacred among us. To honor and welcome diverse people and views. To share in a long, liberal tradition of reason and tolerance, of hope and liberation. To honor the best of our Jewish and Christian roots, and also reach out to know the great truths found in other religious traditions. To grow the whole self — mind, body and spirit working together.

  • To nurture your children’s curiosity and encourage their questions.

  • To help to build a supportive community that eases our loneliness, opens our hearts, and changes our lives.

  • To join your strength with others to create a more just society.


Are Unitarian Universalists welcoming to the LGBTQ+ community?
Yes! This means we affirm and include people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual,transgender, and queer at every level of congregational life—in worship, in program, and in social occasions. We welcome everyone as whole people.


Do Unitarian Universalists welcome people of different faiths?

Yes, we welcome people of many faiths and people with no faith background.  Many of our members were raised in other faith traditions, including couples in which the two individuals have different religious backgrounds. Unitarian Universalists believe that truth can be found in many places. Our services include wisdom drawn from many religions as well as from secular sources.