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What does a UUMA Endowment Fund have to do with Selma?
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One important thing we must do to support social justice is to support ministers—to support the connections that strengthen and call us forth (i.e. collegiality), the training to gives us the skills we need (i.e. continuing education), and the sustenance and nurturance we need to keep showing up (e.g. mentorship, coaching, and wellness programs). This is what the UUMA is here for.


Rev. Mark Morrison Reed in his Keynote address for the Marching in the Arc of Justice Conference said, “We assume that the outpouring of support and the rush to Selma was because of the righteousness of the cause and the magnitude of the injustice, but neither of those…really explain the response. They don’t. It was of course because of the cause, but it was relationship that compelled them to go, the connection of one person to another.”


Morrison-Reed went on to describe the stories of UU ministers who called their UU colleagues, encouraging them to go to Selma and to get the word out. People say “yes” to people. “What took them to Selma? Relationships.” “Too often we…overemphasize the ideological commitment to progressive values, and laud the moral courage but these do not explain what happened. It was about being in relationship.” “With whom are you in relationship? Who will call and say “Shall we go? And what are you going to say? ‘Yes!’ Who is that?” Morrison-Reed asked the gathered people.


For many of us, it is our colleagues. Of course, the UUMA is not the only way that UU ministers experience collegial relationship but it certainly is a primary way. Chapter gatherings, Cluster groups, Ministry Days, Institute for Excellence in Ministry and UUMA continuing education programs—these structures keep us connected across the life of our ministries. They expand our circle of relationship. Our collegial relationships matter so very much. They nudge us, bolster us, teach and inspire, and they invite us into wider collective engagement. There is so much more we can do collectively!


This is where the Sustaining the Call campaign fits in. As costs go up faster than ministerial salaries, as our dues can no longer meet all the diverse and expanding needs of our membership, we need a stable source of funding to sustain and enhance UUMA offerings. Here are some examples:


  • Ministers across the country need to be able to meet to plan collective actions. The UUMA provides a platform on our website for large groups to meet face-to-face via videoconference for meeting and planning.
  • Yet nothing replaces in-person gatherings, when it comes to building stronger and new relationships. The UUMA’s goal is to lower, if not erase, financial barriers to ministers attending all UUMA events. 
  • Morrison-Reed stated in his Keynote that the white ministers who went to Selma “went because of the relationships to one another and because of their relationships to African Americans.” UUMA Chapter gathering and events have not been as inclusive and welcoming of people from marginalized groups as they need to be. This must change and the UUMA is devoted to this structural and cultural shift.

Please give generously to support the financial foundation and strong future of the UUMA by giving generously to the Sustaining the Call Campaign. Click here to make your pledge.


As a special treat listen to Rev. Josh Pawelek, who attended the Marching in the Arc Conference, speaking why he supports Sustaining the Call as a part of his commitment to social justice (may need to enable scripts): 


Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association, 24 Farnsworth Street, Boston, MA 02210-1409
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