We are an LGBTQ Welcoming Congregation

We are a Welcoming Congregation, recognized by the Unitarian Universalist Association. This means we affirm and include people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer at every level of congregational life—in worship, in program, and in social occasions—welcoming them as whole people.

As a Welcoming Congregation we have pledged to:

  • Honor the lives of all people and equally affirm displays of caring and affection without regard for sexual orientation.
  • Celebrate diversity by using inclusive language and content in worship.
  • Incorporate an understanding of the experience of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer persons throughout all of our programs, including religious education.
  • Affirm and celebrate lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer issues and history.
  • Affirm marriage equality and conduct same-sex weddings.
  • Advocate for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people, promoting justice, freedom, and equality in the larger society. We speak out when the rights and dignity of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people are at stake.

We recognize that there’s always something more to learn, and remain open to deepening our understanding about the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people.

2019 Welcoming Renewal

This Welcoming Renewal effort is a UUA process that was developed to help congregations identify where they are on their welcoming journey. The process highlights and celebrates a congregation’s strengths and identifies unaddressed needs. It includes recommitting its welcome message across the spaces wherever congregation members meet. This process was identified as a priority and sponsored by the HUUC Social Justice Ministry Committee in 2019, and we hope it will culminate in a renewed declaration of our being a Welcoming Congregation.

This summer, the committee met with the Church board to bring the following recommendations for actions which we can take on immediately in our church:

  • Permanent signage on our gender-neutral bathrooms (currently they are paper printouts) in the church and Fellowship Building.
  • Display an LGBTQ rainbow or other appropriate flag on the outside of our church and Fellowship Building.
  • Update our welcoming congregation inclusivity statements on materials such as our Order of Service and our weekly announcement wording.
  • Update HUUC social media artifacts (Facebook page, Twitter, HUUC website header files).
  • Place LGBTQ HUUC materials and pamphlets in our church to share with members and visitors.
  • Add personal pronouns to our badges.

The committee presented additional ideas to develop over the coming year:

  • Conduct educational programming and workshops in 2020. These efforts would be in collaboration with the Worship Committee, the RE Committee and the SJMC in order to manage our schedules.
  • Community outreach efforts considered including PR and advertising.
  • Oct 13th service to learn more about gender identity and being transgender
  • Organize Pride march trip in June 2020.

The board unanimously approved all of these actions. These recommendations were developed following the survey which the committee conducted in May 2019.

The UUA recommends that UU congregation assesses their Welcoming Congregation commitment every 5 years. HUUC first became a Welcoming Congregation about 20 years ago. This renewal effort is long overdue.

Members of the Welcoming Renewal committee are: Tom Daniells, Shane Browse, Thea Eiland, Todd Brown, Tom Aciukewicz, and Reverend Jill Cowie.

We welcome your involvement in these renewal efforts and your feedback.

Link to the UUA Uplift Blog