The 8th Principle Resolution passed at our annual meeting on May 16th, 2021
As Unitarian Universalists, we have been grappling with how to address white supremacy in our institutions and the world at large. At MVUUF, the Racial Justice Committee has been calling us to actions that will make our community more welcoming and open to all people—offering the Racial Justice Pledge (find pledge here)and encouraging us all to actively address bias and white supremacy in our lives and in our congregational life together. Other congregations and our denomination as a whole have been grappling with questions of white privilege and power within Unitarian Universalism.
The resolution that was passed is as follows:
We, the members of Minnesota Valley Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Bloomington, MN, covenant to affirm and promote: Journeying toward spiritual wholeness by working to build a diverse multicultural Beloved Community by our actions that accountably dismantle racism and other oppressions in ourselves and our institutions.
Why is it important for the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) to adopt an 8th Principle?
As UUs we are called to build the diverse multicultural Beloved Community that our ancestors spoke of and current generations still speak of to this day. There is much work to be done to undo 400 years of racism and white supremacy. Our BIPOC siblings of faith (Black Lives of Unitarian Universalism (BLUU) and Diverse Revolutionary UU Ministries (DRUUM)) have asked the association to adopt the principle to commit us to take action in dismantling racism and other oppressions. Adopting the 8th Principle makes it clear that all UUs strongly support the long-term work of ending white supremacy. At the 2020 General Assembly, the UUA created the Article II (section of our by-laws that holds our principles, sources and purposes) Study Commission to consider amendments and changes to our current principles. This commission has a two year charge to examine all elements of Article II to reflect “our commitment to anti-racism, anti-oppression, and multiculturalism.”
The importance of adopting the 8th Principle at MVUUF
The time needed for the UUA to fully adopt the resolution could also be reduced by a strong show of support from individual congregations. 40 congregations have already approved the 8th Principle, we would be adding our voice to the voices of others. Adopting the 8th principle at MVUUF would represent an important step in our ongoing journey to dismantle racism in our own congregation. At MVUUF the Racial Justice Committee has been calling us to actions that will make our community more welcoming and open to all people. The UU principles were always intended as a dynamic and flexible covenant instead of a fixed creed. Unitarian Universalism is the only religion that intentionally builds in the flexibility to adjust to ongoing revealed truth; much as the 7th principle was added to respond to our interconnection with each other and the earth in response to environmental awareness, adopting and practicing this 8th principle reflects the current urgency and awareness of the need to do the personal and institutional work of acknowledging and eradicating systemic racism.