About UU and Starr King Church of Hayward

Background on Unitarian Universalism: the uncommon denomination

Imagine a Religion

  • Where People with Different Beliefs Worship as One Faith
  • Where Inspiration Comes From Not One but Many Spiritual Sources
  • For People Who Simply Can't Accept What They've Always Been Asked to Believe
  • Where All Are Welcome

That's Unitarian Universalism, the uncommon denomination.

Unitarian Universalism (UU) is congregational, but non-credal. The seven guiding principles of UU are:

  • The inherent worth and dignity of every person;
  • Justice, equity, and compassion in human relations;
  • Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;
  • A free and responsible search for truth and meaning;
  • The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large;
  • The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all;
  • Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.

Unitarian Universalism is the result of the joining of two liberal faiths: Unitarianism and Universalisism.

Unitarianism was founded on the principal that people should be able to choose between creeds, because, “We need not think alike to love alike.”

American Unitarianism developed in the New England states, as congregational churches. Resisting a call for Puritan orthodoxy, these Unitarians believed in free will and a benevolent, rather than angry, God.

Universalism developed in the United States, by ministers who did not follow the strict Calvinist doctrines of eternal punishment. Believing instead in loving redemption of all, which ultimately grew into a belief that lasting truth is found in all religions. Universalism challenged individuals to embrace those marginalized by society. Welcoming freed slaves and ordaining women ministers.

Thomas Starr King, described the difference between Unitarians and Universalists as, “Universalists believe that God is too good to damn people, and the Unitarians believe that people are too good to be damned by God.”

Starr King UU Church

As to our place in history, the Starr King UU church of Hayward was founded in the 1950s. Our founding members left their previous church because they were opposed to churches signing McCarthy era act of loyalty statements.

We've been an active liberal congregation ever since.

As our parish minister, Katie K., discuses on the get to know our minister page, "In this living tradition, we are encouraged to be the arbiter of our own beliefs, and our congregation is a good illustration of that, as we include liberal Christians, neo-pagans, natural theists, atheists, agnostics and others. "

Our Five Year Vision - (adopted March 2007) A vibrant, dynamic community where meaningful transformative spiritual practice flourishes in an intergenerational environment. A congregation that:

Celebrates our unity in common worship and nurtures each individual’s search for truth.

Provides adults and children with a rich array of opportunities for personal and spiritual growth and service to others.

Embraces visitors and welcomes them into our spiritual community.

Actively addresses critical social justice issues, making a real difference in people’s lives through moral, spiritual and material support.

Cultivates an aesthetically pleasing environment that enriches our community and spiritual life.

Or As sixteenth century Unitarian, Frances David said, “We need not think alike to love alike.”

To learn more, visit our site at http://www.starrking.org/