Social justice and social action are how we practice our faith as Unitarian Universalists in our communities and in the wider world. If we truly believe in beloved community, if we are honestly working to create that place with more love, more hope, more more peace, knowing in our hearts that the more is always possible, if we are working to create heaven here on earth for one another, if we are truly living our covenant, our principles in action, then we are practicing our faith.
I am grateful for the Eight Principles Project definition of Beloved Community, “Beloved Community happens when people of diverse racial, ethnic, educational, class, gender, sexual orientation backgrounds/identities come together in an interdependent relationship of love, mutual respect, and care that seeks to realize justice within the community and in the broader world” (https://www.8thprincipleuu.org/). When I read this definition and look at our congregations, I see that we have a lot of work to do. The work is challenging and will be imperfect, but there is opportunity to support one another, call one another in when we make mistakes, support the voices of the marginalized in our communities, create meaningful relationships outside of our organizations and collaborate until the beloved community is fully realized. There is hope here. There is hope to be found when our congregations engage in this work in meaningful ways, from raising awareness, to fundraising, to direct action and support.
Effective social justice and action happens with continued commitment and relationship. It is living into who we are each and every day, then waking up and trying again the next.
Rev. Danielle has been a pleasure and inspiration to work with as we were co-facilitators in our area’s Beloved Conversations anti-racism course in 2018. Her sense of organization, resourcefulness, diligence, intelligence, inclusivity, and compassion make her ideal in this role.Jim Eastman, Beloved Conversations Co-facilitator, UU Society of Sacramento