Inclusive Ministry in a Diverse World
As Unitarian Universalists (UU) we say that we build inclusive community where you can explore your identity without boxes - that we are multi-racial, Latino/a/x, Asian, Black, Native, and White; rich, middle class, poor; young and old; lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, straight, and anything in between.
AND, "we know that in day to day life - including in youth ministry - living that out is really really really hard. We might ask an insensitive question, make an assumption that is hurtful, speak for someone else, use a harmful word - or be on the receiving end of an ouch. The systems of white supremacy, economic inequity, homophobia, ableism, and patriarchy are the air we breathe and the landscape we move in," says Elizabeth Nguyen, Leadership Development Associate for Youth and Young Adults of Color at the Unitarian Universalist Association. "It’s not surprising that we sometimes end up perpetuating these systems. Youth of many identities are targeted for being queer, trans, folks of color, immigrants, Muslim - or having other folks perceive that they are those things. There are no easy answers but there are real ways to better include youth of many identities and life experiences in our youth ministries."
Join Jessica Laike (Mountain Desert District) and Rev. Elizabeth Nguyen (Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministries) for the Inclusive Youth Ministry in a Diverse World webinar! January 10th, 8:00pm EST or January 12th, 1:00pm EST.
Jessica and Elizabeth will share stories about real ways to create brave space, honor differences, shift culture and widen who we mean when we say “We.” This webinar is based on the fourth competency in the Competencies for Ministry To/With Youth: Creating an Inclusive Youth Ministry. Register at uua.org/ymwebinars.
UU religious educator Laila Ibrahim says, “We are not in church to be with the people who sing the same music, or rally for same cause. We are in church to learn to love better…..There is really only one choice: between imperfect community and no community. Again and again, we are all called to choose to commit ourselves to building a more just, more diverse, and yet ever messy and imperfect beloved community.”