Genocide; it is a heavy word that one wishes had never come into being. The Unitarian Universalist Association has a long legacy of standing up to such atrocities. Rev. Waitstill Sharp, a Unitarian minister, and his wife Martha, a social worker, responded to the genocide in Germany by clandestinely rescuing Jews and opponents of the Nazi regime during World War II. In early 2007, Representative Tom Lantos, D-CA, the only Holocaust survivor in Congress, honored the Sharps in a speech on the House floor, saying, "The Sharps' remarkable story is a powerful reminder that all of us have a moral obligation to take action to end violence and to prevent and stop genocide."
In response to the obvious continuing need for similar actions the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC), a human-rights group, was formed to act on this moral obligation, and continues in the tradition of the Sharps through its work in Darfur. Our morals, our faith, and our hearts are all pained by the unthinkable cruelty faced by the Darfurian people.