Commission on Social Witness Alerts, General Assembly 2012

Speak Out for Social Justice—Phoenix 2012

Friday, June 22, 2012

Today’s schedule includes the Presentation of and Vote on the Proposed Congregational Study/Action Issues (CSAI) for 2012-2016 and programs related to the current CSAI on Immigration as a Moral Issue.

This daily Commission on Social Witness (CSW) Alert is organized according to what’s happening most immediately for the selection of a new CSAI and the current Congregational Study Action Issue (CSAI) on Immigration as a Moral Issue. All related events are described below.

Current CSAI

UUMA/Commission on Social Witness Sermon Award—Friday—7:45-8:30 a.m.—Convention Center Hall AB

Come celebrate our faith’s commitment to social justice and hear Rev. Barbara Prose, winner of the 2012 Social Witness Award of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association and the Commission on Social Witness, speak on the CSAI “Immigration as a Moral Issue.” Her sermon title is “Define American.”

New CSAI—2012-2016

Selection of new Congregational Study Action Issue—TODAY—Plenary #3—Presentation of CSAI proposals and vote to select the CSAI for 2012-2016—ca. 9:00-10:00 a.m.—Convention Center Hall AB

Congregations have proposed five new CSAIs for 2012—2016. Copies of the proposals are in the Final Agenda starting on page 90. They are:

  • CSAI 1: Climate Action and Adaptation Plans: Why Greenhouse Gases and Their Effects Matter to Us
  • CSAI 2: Families, Population, and Environment
  • CSAI 3: Reproductive Justice: Expanding Our Social Justice Calling
  • CSAI 4: Exploring Class Barriers
  • CSAI 5: Ending Slavery

2010 Statement of Conscience: Creating Peace

Recognition of Certified Peace Congregations—Friday—2:15-2:45 p.m.—Exhibit Hall Booth # 204.

Celebrate with the first congregations to achieve this certification!

Current CSAI

Sharing: Immigration—What are Congregations Thinking and Doing—Friday—3:15-4:30 p.m.—Convention Center 227 AB

Hear what others are doing. Share what you are doing. Take home new ideas!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Welcome to Phoenix and GA 2012! Hold on to this Summary CSW (Commission on Social Witness) Alert. It’s your first of four daily guides to our social witness work at GA. As delegates of member congregations, it’s up to you to participate in the workshops and plenaries. There is much at stake, including Selecting the new Congregational Study/Action Issue for 2012-2016, attending programs on our active Congregational Study/Action Issue on Immigration, and hearing what congregations are doing to implement the Statement of Conscience adopted last year—Ethical Eating. Plan to participate fully, and ask about what you don’t understand. You can access CSW members at Booth 400 in the Exhibit Hall and up front, on the right, during the plenary sessions that include CSW business. Let’s bear social witness together!

How to Navigate Our Social Witness Process at GA

Check your GA Agenda (apparently at back of Program Book)—on pages 81-84 to find additional information on the social witness processes named below. At the CSW booth you’ll find a copy of the Delegates’ Guide to Social Witness.

Let’s first clear up that ornery alphabet soup:

  • CSAI = Congregational Study Action Issue
  • SOC = Statement of Conscience
  • AIW = Action of Immediate Witness

The CSAI emerges first in a congregation, district, or sponsored organization and moves through a process of congregational and GA selection every two years. An SOC is drafted by the CSW in the third year and presented to congregations and delegates for comments, proposed amendments, and final approval.

Each CSW Alert will be organized according to what’s happening most immediately for the Proposed CSAIs, Active CSAI. Related events will be highlighted.

Feedback on the Immediate Witness Process

The Commission on Social Witness asks your feedback on how the General Assembly can best respond to Immediate Social Issues that arise quickly and cannot be easily handled by the four-year Congregational Study/Action Process.
Please come by our Booth 400 and fill out a brief survey on how we should respond to Immediate Social Issues, if not by the current Actions of Immediate Witness Process.

Selection of New CSAI for 2012-2016

Event—Proposed Congregational Study/Action Issues for 2012-2016—Thursday—10:30-11:45 a.m.—Conv. Center 121 AB.

Come hear Sponsors for 5 Proposed CSAIs present their proposals in 2 minutes each and answer questions. Help them hone their presentations for Friday’s Plenary that will determine which of the Proposed CSAIs will be selected for 4 years of congregational focus and formation and potential adoption as a UUA Statement of Conscience.

Active CSAI—Immigration as a Moral Issue—2010-2014

Event—National Perspectives on Immigration as a Moral Issue—Thursday—3:15-4:30 p.m.—Conv. Center 227 AB.

Angela Maria Kelley is Vice-President for Immigration Policy and Advocacy with the Center for American Progress in Washington, D.C. seeking justice for U.S. Immigrants. She is regularly quoted by The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Politico, and has appeared on PBS, MSNBC, Fox, and National Public Radio.

2012 Implementation Year for Ethical Eating SOC

Event—Implementation Year for Ethical Eating SOC—Thursday—5:00-6:15 p.m.—Conv. Center 227 AB.

Our Bylaws call for a focused year of implementation after an SOC is adopted. Come hear what our congregations have done this past year, and what we can do in the future! “Ethical Eating—Food & Environmental Justice” is too important a subject to let fade away in our congregations.

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