We are learning that a standard of social ethics is not attained by traveling a sequestered byway, but by mixing on the thronged and common road where all must turn out for one another, and at least see the size of one another's burden. — Jane Addams, in Democracy and Social Ethics

This session demonstrates how children can affirm and promote our fifth Unitarian Universalist Principle, the right of conscience and the use of democratic process. Participants will learn about our Association's leadership role in contemporary justice issues and the impact Unitarian Universalist children and adults had when they sent thousands of handmade valentines to California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to promote marriage equality. The group will choose an issue they are concerned about and give voice to their convictions in postcards or a petition to congregational leaders or government lawmakers. We will add the signpost "Get Involved" to our Faithful Journeys Path.

Activity 5 assumes the group formed a Faithful Journeys Action Club in Session 4 and began a project. If you have not formed a club, or need to choose an issue to address, use Alternate Activity 1 to lead a democratic process for the group to choose an issue or project. Research potential issues to offer the children specific choices. Consider recruiting additional co-leaders from your congregation's social action committee to help lead these activities. Or, reach out to youth and adults who may be interested in the issue(s) you may select.

To model your action on the valentines story and send valentines for marriage equality, use Alternate Activity 2.

Goals

This session will:

  • Teach and reinforce our fifth Unitarian Universalist Principle, the right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large
  • Strengthen Unitarian Universalist identity by presenting contemporary Unitarian Universalists' work for marriage equality and our denomination's leadership role in this justice campaign
  • Encourage civic responsibility and involvement as an expression of Unitarian Universalist faith
  • Promote marriage equality as a justice issue.

Learning Objectives

Participants will:

  • Become empowered as people who can act in faith and make a difference by expressing their convictions in a democratic process
  • Learn how Unitarian Universalists of all ages in California spoke up for marriage equality
  • Learn about the democratic process and practice civic responsibility through participation in an action campaign
  • Experience different feelings associated with justice and injustice through singing a justice song
  • Name ways that they might act which would reflect the signpost "Get Involved"
  • Name ways that they have translated faith into action by participating in the Faithful Footprints exercise.

For more information contact religiouseducation@uua.org.