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. This leads us to understand 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 of the shared ministries we carry out inside and outside our doors. Members vote and participate in the democratic process that elects leaders and steers 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 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 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 inquiry 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 help you connect with the people and programs that make up this church community. We’ll also let you know when Exploring UU classes are scheduled, as well as advise you of other events and information for members and friends of the church.
- 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 watch recordings of our live-streamed Sunday services, or listen to past sermons on your favorite podcast app or the UUC website. 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 – be sure you’re active in UUC Connect to see all the options
- volunteer in some way within the UUC community (contact our Director of Ministries, check in at the UUC Info station in Nathan Johnson Hall on Sunday, or visit the church office at other times if you’d like some help finding the right opportunity)
- participate in a social justice workshop or action – the UUC Calendar and the front-page News are handy guides to upcoming events and activities
- 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. 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 can better plan for those attending. Scroll to the bottom of this page to see upcoming dates. If you are unable to take the class or believe you have already met the learning requirement through other UU experience, contact the Director of Ministries to arrange an interview and/or materials that might answer specific questions about UU or UUC.
- 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:
These classes are usually scheduled once a quarter or so, and may be available on line as well as in-person. 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 for you, but we are usually able to accommodate drop-in attendance too. For classes held in the church building, child care is available if requested in advance, typically at the time of registration.
- As we begin to emerge from the distancing we’ve experienced through the pandemic, we are looking at in-person Membership dates in 2021-22. These are currently pending, and will be announced. Please join our Exploring UU Waitlist in UUC Connect, and we’ll let you know when the next sessions are scheduled. If you do not yet have a UUC Connect account, please contact the Director of Ministries.
Member Covenanting and New Member Reception: Dates TBA in 2021/22. For all who have become UUC members over the last two years.