Social Action: What It Is
The mission of MVUUF’s Social Action efforts is to
engage the congregation in social justice work as individual and collective expressions of our Unitarian Universalist faith, affirming the inherent worth of each person, our mutual interdependency, and the need to create a world in which the institutional structures of society are both just and humanizing, and in which each person has the opportunity to flourish.
Social Action permeates all church programming – worship, religious education, fellowship, and outreach. Overseeing all of the social action work is the Social Action Committee, currently chaired by Lynn Buffington. Our connection between the Social Action Committee and the Program Council is Bill Ross, Social Action Representative.
We have five approaches to social justice action:
- Humanitarian Giving is intended to meet the needs of persons in distress. Through our donations of money, food, or time, hungry people are fed, homeless people are housed, help is given where it is needed.
- Education informs us of the importance of a social issue and encourages us to interpret the issue within the context of liberal religious values. Through meetings, workshops, classes, forums, and worship services our consciousness is raised about particular issues.
- Social Witnessing is making public by word or deed our convictions regarding a particular issue. Through demonstrations, marches, writing letters, passing resolutions, media communication, even changing our lifestyles, we let the larger community know where we stand on a given issue.
- Advocacy is our working through the local, state, and national legislative process to impact public policy. By lobbying, visiting or writing elected representatives, or giving testimony at public hearings, we try to have an impact on the shape of public policy.
- Community Organizing impacts decisions affecting political, economic, educational and social systems in our society. It involves our participation as an institutional member in a community organization that develops sufficient power and civic voice to identify and influence critical social issues in the area.
In addition, social action groups, made up of interested members and friends, are formed to work for specific social justice initiatives as well as to find ways to engage the congregation. For more details on specific action groups and to find out how to become involved, see below: