Dear UU Friends,
As many of you know, I have just been elected President of the Unitarian Universalist Association. But this victory belongs to all of us. I may have been the candidate on the ballot, but we were all in this race together. The real candidate has been our shared vision of what is possible.
I have trouble expressing how profoundly the generosity of people in this campaign has touched me. I can only say, in the Spanish phrase, mil gracias, “a thousand thanks.”
When a small group of us launched this campaign more than a year and a half ago, we made two promises to one another. The first promise was that we would conduct a campaign we would be proud of when it was finished. We committed ourselves to focusing on our vision and never to allow ourselves to be drawn into personal attacks.
The second promise sounds frivolous, but it isn’t. We promised to have fun. What we meant is that we would take time to enjoy each other’s company and to celebrate what is good, joyous and life-enhancing in our faith.
We have kept both promises. They are good promises to remember as we go forward. We have won the election, but we are only beginning our campaign to make Unitarian Universalism the religion for our time.
We are only beginning our growth, not just in numbers but in spirit, vitality and diversity.
Fortunately, we are continuing and building on the great achievement of President Bill Sinkford in social witness. Ours will be a presidency passionately engaged in the great moral issues of our time: economic justice, peace, and human rights.
And we pledge together to work for open and accountable governance in our Association – above all, one that is sensitive to the diversity of our districts and congregations and is truly useful to them.
These great projects are nothing that I, even as UUA President, can do alone. They are our continued campaign. Over the past year and a half, as I have traveled the country I have had a chance to talk with – and listen to – many of you. As president, I will continue to listen. I plan to travel, to meet again or for the first time as many of you as I can. I also want to use 21st century technology to make this a democratic, interactive presidency.
I would like to thank and praise the Rev. Dr. Laurel Hallman for her deep insights and inspiring contributions to our faith. Over these many months, as we have campaigned together, we have almost learned to finish one another’s sentences. Her concerns for spiritual depth, covenantal relationships and stewardship are values I share.
To Laurel’s supporters, I offer my warmest welcome. There are no divisions in our movement, only complementarities. Your call for spiritual depth has always been a call that leads us to work together to make a better world. Together, we are answering the same call heard by Servetus, Ballou, Channing, Parker and Susan B. Anthony—a call to leave behind what is outmoded and to let compassion guide us as we shape a future together.
So, as we bring this unforgettable electoral campaign to a close, we begin our campaign to govern together. Our goals to transform our movement are ambitious. In the hard days ahead, let us remember that we have already achieved what seemed a distant dream. You have my heartfelt thanks. You hold in your hands our shared hopes for what is to come.
In gratitude and faith,