Becoming a member means that you have chosen University Unitarian Church as your spiritual home, a place to grow and nurture yourself and others. We invite you to come walk your path, companioned by others doing the same.
On this page:
Joining a spiritual community is an important personal decision and a serious life commitment.
The covenant of membership is a promise we make to ourselves and to each other “to awaken spirit, nurture hope and inspire action,” as our mission statement says.
This means that as members, we help one another discover more deeply who we are, and how we may live our values more meaningfully and in new ways. We receive care from the community and provide care for others – and we also have an obligation to care for ourselves.
Why become a member?
- Members take on the mantle and legacy of stewardship for this church. We take pride in being connected in an important way to the rich history of our Unitarian Universalist faith. We acknowledge that our support of this community is an expression of care for future generations. Membership is a public affirmation of what this religious community values and does in the world.
- Members have a voice in shaping this church community and the work and shared ministries that we take up outside our doors. Members may vote and participate in the democratic process to steer the priorities of the church.
- Members are eligible to serve as delegates to the Pacific Northwest District Annual Meetings and the annual General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA). As a large church, we hold a large responsibility to guide the institutions of our faith tradition.
- Members are able to hold leadership positions in UUC committees and programs such as the Board of Trustees, Covenant Groups, Justice Ministries, Care Team and the Leadership Development Committee. We can also serve in leadership positions for the District, Region and national Association.
- Members have the privilege of receiving rites of passage at the church, officiated by one of our ministers. Such events include weddings, child dedications, and memorial services.
- Members receive a complimentary subscription to the UU World magazine, a monthly print and digital publication of the Unitarian Universalist Association.
- New members also receive a personal chalice and UUC name tag as welcome gifts from the congregation.
What is the path to membership?
Each person approaches this in their own way and own time. We honor this and encourage you to do what is right for you. And, we’re here to help you along the way.
The only two steadfast requirements for membership, according to our bylaws, are the signing of the membership book and making a yearly financial pledge, according to your financial means. This can be done at any time by appointment with the Director of Ministries.
However, we encourage you to think of membership as a considered journey along a meaningful path. Many people have asked for a suggested route, so we have sketched it out below.
- Please fill out a Connections card and indicate that you would like information on joining UUC. This allows us to get your contact information into the database so that we can let you know when the Exploring UU classes are scheduled, as well as advise you of other events and information for prospective members.
- If you are new to UUC, we encourage you to get to know us over the course of a year or so. Come on Sundays for one of our two church services (children’s programs and child care are available while you attend). You may want to listen to other sermons on the UUC website, too. We also encourage you to check out some of the other Unitarian Universalist churches in the Seattle area since we all have our own unique personalities.
- So that you can experience the community and UU faith in action on a deeper level, we recommend that you
- attend at least one class, small group experience or social gathering at UUC or in a member’s home
- volunteer in some way within the UUC community (check in at the UUC Info station in Nathan Johnson Hall on Sunday, or at the church office at other times if you’d like some help finding the right opportunity!)
- participate in a social justice workshop or action
- enroll your children in Religious Education classes and encourage your middle schoolers and older teens to participate in youth activities
- Attend the “Exploring UU” classes (see bottom of page). These four classes, 90 minutes each, offer an excellent overview of Unitarian Universalism and University Unitarian Church, along with opportunities for personal reflection and interaction with other prospective members. There is no charge for the course, but please do register in advance so that we know how many people will be attending. See the bottom of this page for upcoming dates. If you are unable to take the class or believe you have already met the learning requirement through other experience, contact the Director of Ministries to arrange an interview and/or materials for A Self-Guided Journey.
- Meet with a Visiting Steward about your pledge commitment. By making and fulfilling a financial pledge of whatever size is right for you, you are not only showing a commitment to sustaining this community, but also participating in the planning process for the budget.
- Sign the Membership book. This can be done at anytime by appointment with the Director of Ministries.
At least once a year, we hold a New Member Celebration. The whole church re-covenants as members during each of the worship services. After the second service, those who are ready to join are welcomed to a reception with those who have become members within the last two years. New members may sign the book and turn in their pledge forms right there, and join recent members in being honored in a welcoming ceremony led by the senior minister and witnessed by key leaders of the church.
If you are interested in joining and/or have questions to discuss, please contact our Director of Ministries.
Upcoming “Exploring UU” classes:
NOTE: Due to public health concerns related to the spread of coronavirus, this program has been suspended until further notice.
These classes are usually scheduled once a quarter or so, and the presentation format varies to address the different scheduling needs of those interested in attending. There is no charge for this class, which fulfills the education requirement for UUC membership and is open to all – those who are curious, those who are ready to join, or those who are long-time members at UUC or other UU congregations. We do ask you to register in advance to help us better plan, but we are usually able to accommodate drop-in attendance too. Child care is available if requested in advance, typically at the time of registration.
TBA: Two consecutive Saturdays
Please plan to attend both sessions, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. To celebrate the New Year and our beautifully renewed church building, we’re inviting not only those considering membership at UUC, but also current, former, and emerging leaders. This will be a time to greet one another in our new space, consider our faith journeys as part of a large congregation that embraces many diversities, and explore together what Unitarian Universalism and this church offers and requires of us. This special class will be team taught by the Rev. Jon Luopa, Senior Minister; the Rev. Beth Chronister, Minister of Pastoral Care and Social Justice; and Janine Larsen, Director of Ministries. Coffee, tea, and an assortment of refreshments will be offered throughout the morning.
First Saturday: Theology, History, and Community
Second Saturday: Caring for One Another, Working for Justice, Sharing Leadership
To register, click here.
Member Covenanting and New Member Reception: Date TBA. For all who have become UUC members over the last two years.