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Growing a Beloved Community

Twelve Hallmarks of a Healthy Congregation

Tom Owen-Towle

"Rather than focus on the dumb and destructive things our parishes do, which are all too familiar, I’ve chosen to accentuate the positive, arouse the possibilities, and spur us on toward the very best we can become."
—Tom Owen-Towle

Grounded in liberal religious thought and history, Owen-Towle identifies 12 distinct attributes that are vital to all successful UU churches. Aimed at Sunday worshippers, lay leaders, religious professionals, and social justice activists alike, here is a visionary primer on what it means to do and be church the Unitarian Universalist way.

For 24 years Tom Owen-Towle was co-minister of First Unitarian Universalist Church of San Diego. He is the author of many books, including Freethinking Mystics with Hands: Exploring the Heart of Unitarian Universalism.

Praise for Growing a Beloved Community:

“Tom Owen-Towle has—again—got his finger on the pulse of meaning that nourishes healthy congregations.  A timely and thoughtful book.”
—Rev. Anne Odin Heller, UUA District Executive, Pacific Northwest District

“In celebrating the sacrament of community,Owen-Towle consecrates the faith he has served so long and well.”
—Forrest Church, author of Freedom from Fear

“This book is a wonderful tool for all who are working to make their UU congregation the best they can be. It is at once a road map, a ‘how to' manual and a great source of inspiration and uplift. Tom writes to the point and with great wisdom and warmth. There is something of value on every single page.”
—Denny Davidoff, Board Member, Meadville/Lombard Theological School

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Last updated on Wednesday, June 2, 2010.

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