Uplift: Uplifting LGBTQ+ Experience Within and Beyond Unitarian Universalism

UPLIFT Pride - Now More Than Ever!

Image Description: UUA rainbow chalice next to the word UPLIFT in rainbow colors. Underneath, text reads, “Uplifting the LGBTQ+ Experience within Unitarian Universalism & Beyond.

UPLIFT Pride ... Now More Than Ever!

Image Description: UUA rainbow chalice next to the word UPLIFT in rainbow colors. Underneath, text reads, “Uplifting the LGBTQ+ Experience within Unitarian Universalism & Beyond."

PRIDE ... Now More Than Ever!

Happy Pride Friends!

I know the days are heavy and the nights are long, but now more than ever we must find the strength to celebrate Pride.

I know the attacks seem relentless and the tide of death seems to be drowning us all, but now more that ever we must find the strength to celebrate Pride.

I know that our people cannot afford the basic necessities of life and are isolated and vulnerable, but now more that ever we must find the strength to celebrate Pride.

I know that many are left out of a rainbow that has been co-oped for capitalistic ends, even so, now more that ever we must find the strength to celebrate Pride.

Yes, fascism has displaced millions abroad and is threatening our bodies in the so-called Land of the Free, nevertheless we must find the strength to celebrate Pride.

And by Pride I don’t just mean a parade, a Tea dance, or even a march. What I mean is now more than ever we must find the strength to live our truth unapologetically. We must find the force of will to fight like hell. We must find the audacity to care as if ALL OUR LIVES depend on it, because it does.

In the midst of Pride may we take care of our people. May we find the strength to laugh. May we make space for freedom. And most importantly, May we all make the effort to notice the one who is excluded, left behind, or shut out.

In 2022, now more than ever, may we UPLIFT Pride!

View the Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church Aren't We Welcoming Already - Pride Service (YouTube video) organized by the Cedar Lane LGBTQ+ and Gender Justice Team and the Cedar Lane Ministry, led by The Rev. Michael Crumpler, The Cedar Lane Choir, and Jenny Crane.


LGBTQIA+ Programming and Events at General Assembly

To register for LGBTQIA+ Events at General Assembly, visit: ​https://tinyurl.com/LGBTQIAatGA2022

*General Assembly registration is required to attend events in-person.*All in-person events are in Room D133-134 in the Convention Center, except the Trans/Non-Binary Welcome Reception and Queer BIPOC Kiki Night Out.

Trans/Non-Binary Welcome Reception at GA (IP, TGNB)
Wednesday, June 22 @ 12pm PT

LGBTQIA+ Meet & Greet  (IPV)
Wednesday, June 22 @ 12pm PT

LGBTQIA+ PRIDEful Open House (IPV)
Thursday, June 23 @ 10am PT

Five Practices of Welcome Renewal Orientation (IPV)
Thursday, June 23 @ 12:30pm PT
Saturday, June 25 @ 11am PT

GA Trans/Non-Binary Open House (VI, TGNB)
Friday, June 24 @ 4pm PT

Queer BIPOC Kiki Night Out (IP)
Friday, June 24 @ 10pm PT

Side With Love Launches UPLIFT Action 

From the rising tide of “Don’t Say Gay” laws to the criminalization of life-saving gender affirming and abortion care, our bodies and our identities are being targeted in deadly ways. Rooted in our Unitarian Universalist affirmation of the inherent worth and dignity of all people—including all bodies, and all identities—Side With Love is proud to introduce UPLIFT Action, our new campaign organizing for LGBTQIA+, Gender, and Reproductive Justice. Together, we commit to growing our skills, deepening our spiritual grounding, honing our analysis, and fighting together for a world in which every body is sacred.

COME JOIN US in the struggles for LGBTQIA+, Gender, and Reproductive Justice!

CLICK HERE to sign up for email updates!

CLICK HERE  to get involved in upcoming UPLIFT Action trainings, actions, and political education through Side With Love’s Action Center!

Renewing Our Welcoming Congregations

To learn how to live the Five Practices of Welcome Renewal 
at your congregation ...
Please attend The Five Practices of Welcome Renewal Zoom Orientation

CONGRATULATIONS to the Five Practices of Welcome Renewal Congregations in 2021-2022!

Accotink UU Church, Burke, VA

All Peoples, Louisville, KY

Buckman Bridge UU Church, Orange Park, FL

Clayton Memorial UU Church, Newberry, SC

First Parish Church UU, Duxbury, MA

First Parish UU Canton, Canton, MA

First Universalist Society, Franklin, MA

First UU Church, Springfield, MO

First UU Church, Rochester, MN

First UU Church of Indiana, Indiana, PA

May Memorial UU Society, Syracuse, NY

North Shore Unitarian Church, Deerfield, IL

Pacific UU Fellowship, Astoria, OR

Prairie Lakes UU Fellowship, Ripon, WI

Second Unitarian Church, Chicago, IL

Sedona UU Fellowship, Sedona, AZ

Tapestry A UU Congregation, Lake Forest, CA

The First Univ. Church of Rochester, Rochester, NY

Unitarian Fellowship of London, London, ON

UU Church of Palo Alto, Palo Alto, CA

UU Church of Tippecanoe County, W. Lafayette, IN

UU Church of Utica, Utica, NY

UU Community Church of Washington County, Hillsboro, OR

UU Congregation of Phoenix, Paradise Valley, AZ

UU Fellowship of Galveston County, Galveston, TX

UU Fellowship of the Eastern Slopes, Tamworth, NH

UU Society of Fairhaven, Fairhaven, MA

UUs of Coastal Georgia, Inc., Brunswick, GA

Westside UU Church, Knoxville, TN

UPLIFT Monthly Trans/Non-Binary+ Gathering Space

Join the UPLIFT monthly gatherings focused on trans, nonbinary, and other not (completely or at all) cis UUs. Join us to connect with other trans/nonbinary UUs and co-create support and community across our faith. All you need to bring is yourself (and other trans/nonbinary friends, if you’d like)!

These gatherings focus on getting to know each other and on sharing our collective dreams, ideas, and talents for this space. Expansive definitions of trans, nonbinary, and UU all apply. If you are interested in this space, and you aren’t cisgender, it’s a space for you.

NOTE: This space is intentionally multi-generational. It is open to and welcoming of trans/nonbinary elders as well as children, youth, and young adults. Standard UUA online safety measures apply to ensure all people under 18 are able to attend. We're glad to have you here!


The Old Ship Church Responds to Harassment

A Congregational Letter from The Old Ship Church Board following harassment for supporting LGBTQIA+ rights ahead of their Pride Sunday Service

"These Are Troubling Times ... and we need to be extra vigilant when we gather as a community!"

These are troubling times in our nation. Fueled by anger and a lack of understanding of our values, there are some people who see our faith as a threat to their way of life. This past Wednesday Ken had 2 phone calls with one of these people. Although no direct threat was made, the vitriol of this person, particularly in relation to the nature of our faith and our support of LGBTQ+ rights, gave us reason enough to believe that we need to be extra vigilant when we gather as a community. 

To that end, you will notice a police detail at Old Ship this Sunday. Again, no specific threat was made but Ken, the Board of Trustees, the Deacons and the Hingham Police believe that it is right for us to be extra cautious this weekend. 

In the words of UUA President Rev. Susan Frederick-Gray, “this is not time for a casual faith. As Unitarian Universalists, we are first and foremost religious communities that practice love as our foundation. We are living in times of heartbreak, violence, and pain, and in this time we need communities that remind us of our humanity." 

So we will gather in worship on Sunday morning and we will celebrate all people, especially our LGBTQIA+ siblings, with Pride Day Sunday afternoon. We are people of faith who are committed to the inherent worth and dignity of all people. We belong to a faith that is needed more than ever in these times. So we will gather, ever vigilant but undaunted in who we are, what we believe and what we stand for.

Gratefully, The Old Ship Church's Pride Celebration at First Parish was truly a success. There were 70 congregants in church, most since we started back. People who usually attend Zoom service came because of the e-mail that was sent out. That's a true sense of Pride and support for LGBTQ+ rights.

Woullard Lett, the Regional Lead for the UUA, New England Region, to spent the day with Hingham. According to Abby, a member of First Parish, Hingham, "We did what we hoped, people not associated with our church came to celebrate their Pride. And clergy from surrounding churches came to show their support. We raised $700 for The Trevor Project. We did have a Sheriff detail at the event that was never needed. Absolutely no trouble."

The UUA Safe Congregations Team is available to support you should your congregation experience harassments of threats. Please visit, https://www.uua.org/safe to learn how to make your congregation a safe and welcoming place to all.

Fighting for Trans/Non-Binary Rights in 2022

In January, during our 30 Days of Love, we hosted a panel with E.N. Hill, Rev. KC Slack, Rev. Ranwa Hamammy, and Adrian Ballou to talk more about the links between anti-abortion and anti-trans legislation from a UU perspective.
Watch the webinar here (it’s called “Cut from the Same Cloth: Anti-Trans and Anti-Abortion Movements and How to Fight Back”), and check out Side With Love’s week of gender and LGBTQIA+ justice resources here .

In February, our Side with Love team received in-house political education focused on anti-trans rhetoric from Imara Jones, where we learned how the right is putting all their energy on anti-trans legislation… and how showing up for trans rights is about showing up for all of us. Learn more about this by checking out resources on Translash, like this episode on the attack on trans youth  from podcast The Anti-Trans Hate Machine.
Translash also recently kicked off media focused on trans and reproductive justice intersections with on-the-ground insight from Kierra Johnson, Oriaku Njoku, Dallas Ducar, Cazembe Murphy, and Imara Jones in a “Trans Bodies, Trans Choices” webinar. They also released a podcast episode on the topic, an Instagram Live session on trans people trying to conceive, and short films “My Abortion Saved My Life” and “I Didn’t Think I”d Make It.” 
In March, we kicked off our collaboration with The Trevor Project to build power as UUs and fight back against anti-trans legislation. We held a webinar, Combating Anti-Trans Legislation 101 , with panelists Sam Ames, Rev. Erin Walter, and Rev. Lisa Garcia-Sampson, and Side With Love team members.

If you’re looking for additional UU resources for LGBTQIA+ community, check out this information below:

Support UUA LGBTQIA+ Ministries

Each of us has worth and dignity, and that worth includes our gender and our sexuality.
As Unitarian Universalists we not only open our doors to people of all sexual orientations and gender identities, we value diversity of sexuality and gender and see it as a spiritual gift.

Your support  helps keep our LGBTQIA+ Justice and Public Witness work active and vibrant, as well as deepening our Welcoming Congregations program.