The Eighth Principle
In our congregational meeting of 2022, the congregation of the Unitarian Church of Baton Rouge voted to adopt the 8th Principle, to be added to the existing seven principles.
The Eighth Principle reads:
“We, the member congregations of the Unitarian Universalist Association, 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.”
This text was created by Bruce Pollack-Johnson and Paula Cole Jones. It has been endorsed by BLUU (Black Lives of Unitarian Universalism) and DRUMM (Diverse Revolutionary UU Ministries). To date, it has been adopted by 54 congregations and UU groups.
UCBR’s 8th Principle Project team has created a process of discernment around the adoption of the 8th Principle, including Middle Hour conversations, discussion guides for Branches groups, working with existing committees and teams, worship services, and integration into Family Ministries. The educational period will extend through the spring of 2022, culminating with a congregational vote at the April 2022 Congregational Meeting.
On a national scale, the UUA has established a commission to review all of the current principles and purposes. Paula Cole Jones, co-author of the 8th Principle, is a member of the commission. The Study Commission will present its recommendations related to the 8th Principle and the other UU principles to the UUA Board of Trustees in January 2023 for inclusion in the business of the 2023 UUA General Assembly.
To help you learn more about this project, the 8th Principle Project team has assembled the following resources.
The 8th Principle Project Website
Youth and the 8th Principle
Sophia Fahs Lecture at General Assembly 2019
Four Ministers Discuss Leading an 8th principle congregation
Religious Education and the 8th Principle
The 8th Principle Matters to Members of the BIPOC Community
Conversation with Paula Cole Jones and Rev. Vanessa Rush Southern
UCBR service “The Eighth Principle,” February 6, 2022