Unitarian Universalist Common Read
A Common Read invites participants to read and discuss the same book in a given period of time. A Common Read can build community in our congregations and our movement by giving diverse people a shared experience, shared language, and a basis for deep, meaningful conversations.
Each year's Common Read is chosen by a committee including both headquarters and field staff of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA). Anyone may nominate a book. Read the criteria for Common Read selection. Nominate a book for 2018-19 using our online form.
Common Read 2017-18
The challenges, the call, and the opportunity of this moment in Unitarian Universalism and in the broader US American society are compelling. Unitarian Universalists must be prepared and willing to look inward, examining, exploring, and acting to dismantle white supremacy culture in our association, in our congregations and groups, and in ourselves. At the same time, we must be prepared and willing to look outward and act to lift up Unitarian Universalist values in the political and civic challenges of our time. After much deliberation, the Common Read Selection Committee has chosen two books for this year’s Common Read:
- Centering: Navigating Race, Authenticity, and Power in Ministry, edited by Mitra Rahnema (Skinner House, 2017), centers the stories, analysis, and insights of a number of Unitarian Universalist religious leaders of color as they explore how racial identity is made both visible and invisible in Unitarian Universalist communities.
- Daring Democracy: Igniting Power, Meaning, and Connection for the America We Want, by Frances Moore Lappé and Adam Eichen, (Beacon Press, September 2017) lifts up the importance of democracy itself. It examines the anti-democracy movement that led to the Trump presidency, then offers a vision and call to action to save the democracy we thought we had and to take our civic life to a place it has never been.
Centering offers help with the inner work of today’s Unitarian Universalism; Daring Democracy provides a vision and practical guidance for advancing our justice-making work in the public square. We invite you to make time to read both, and to work with others to organize discussion groups in your UU community.
Congregations, groups, and individuals may purchase both books from inSpirit: The UU Book and Gift Shop. Centering is available now and Daring Democracy will be available in early September; bulk discounts are available. A discussion guide for each book will be available for download by October 13, 2017. Each guide will include plans for both a single session and three more in-depth sessions for Unitarian Universalist congregations, groups, and individuals. Make plans for in-person discussion groups and/or find a reading buddy and begin informal conversations.
Share your congregation's participation in this year's Common Read.