Unitarian Universalism represents the merger (in 1961) of two groups that shared a common belief in the spiritual potential of individual human beings, and a readiness to question religious dogma. At present there are approximately 1,050 Unitarian Universalist
churches and fellowships in the United States and Canada serving some
220,000 Unitarian Universalists.
Unitarianism and Universalism
Of these two streams, the older and more international is Unitarianism. Unitarian beliefs emerged in Central and Eastern Europe in the 16th and 17th centuries, reappeared in the 18th century in England, and then made their way to the North American colonies, taking root especially in Massachusetts. Unitarians denied the belief in the Holy Trinity shared by Roman Catholics and most Protestant churches.
Universalism, on the other hand, became an almost entirely American movement despite its origins in England in the 18th century. The early Universalists affirmed the unlimited (or universal) provision of salvation from sin, denying that such salvation could be conferred by a church authority only.
Brunswick's Unitarian Universalist Church
The First Universalist Society of Brunswick, the predecessor of our church, was organized in 1812, and opened its first church building in 1828. There has been a Unitarian presence in Brunswick since 1830. The present church building, designed by Thomas W. Silloway, an architect and Universalist Minister, was dedicated in 1886.
To Learn More
YouTube videos provide great information on the UU Church:
- Voices - Members talk about what being a UU means
- What is a UU?
- A playful video that explores the common understandings and misunderstandings about UU'ism.