Our Beliefs

About Unitarian Universalism

Unitarian Universalism (UU) is not a creedal faith, instead, our congregations are committed to The Seven Principles, which we hold as strong values and moral guides.

We grew from the union of two radical Christian groups: the Universalists, who organized in 1793, and the Unitarians, who organized in 1825. They joined to become the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) in 1961. Today, Unitarian Universalists include people of many beliefs who share UU values of peace, love, and understanding.

UU Principles

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

UU Sources

  1. Direct experience of that transcending mystery and wonder, affirmed in all cultures, which moves us to a renewal of the spirit and an openness to the forces which create and uphold life;
  2. Words and deeds of prophetic women and men which challenge us to confront powers and structures of evil with justice, compassion, and the transforming power of love;
  3. Wisdom from the world’s religions which inspires us in our ethical and spiritual life;
  4. Jewish and Christian teachings which call us to respond to God’s love by loving our neighbors as ourselves;
  5. Humanist teachings which counsel us to heed the guidance of reason and the results of science, and warn us against idolatries of the mind and spirit;
  6. Spiritual teachings of earth-centered traditions which celebrate the sacred circle of life and instruct us to live in harmony with the rhythms of nature.

These seven Principles and six Sources of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) grew out of the grassroots of our tradition, were affirmed democratically, and are part of who we are. Read them as they are written in the UUA Bylaws.

East Shore’s Mission

 We practice love, explore spirituality, build community, and promote justice. (approved March 2017)

East Shore’s Vision

Practice Love

Offer a loving, welcoming environment for children and adults, inspired by appreciation and acceptance of all people.

Practice and expand our capacity to love, nourish, and inspire as we encourage each other to explore and grow through worship, group activities, education, and deep conversation.

Heal and connect as we share life’s transitions, celebrating our joys and mourning our losses, embracing the rhythms of life and of the Earth we have mutually inherited.

Explore Spirituality

Explore spirituality through worship, classes, and activities that integrate diverse spiritual traditions and build connection to something larger than one’s self, grounding the free expression of our values and faith in the outer world.

Inspire spiritual depth through worship services that incorporate thought-provoking messages of hope from the pulpit, music and other arts, and diverse sources of creative inspiration.

Dedicate space, time, and energy to providing spiritual sanctuary – places and events that offer opportunities for reflection, centering, emotional nurturing, and shared experience.

Build Community

Provide opportunities to grow our capacity for loving community through connection with each other, including covenant circles, topical/interest groups, connections teams, church governance and committee work, and through the covenanted practice of spiritual and loving ways of addressing our conflicts and differences.

Engage congregation-wide participation in exploration of personal, societal, and institutional expressions of racism and oppression through deep listening, compassionate communication, and understanding of systems of oppression, promoting multicultural, anti-racist, and anti-oppressive competencies that expand our communal culture and leadership.

Collaborate to extend our compassion and love into the larger community by providing sanctuary and support for those in need.

Promote Justice

Listen to the voices of those in our communities who are in need, in distress, or in other challenging circumstances, and engage in active outreach to partner with and empower them, visibly demonstrating that “service is our prayer.”

Partner with earth and social justice-related organizations to promote racial, economic and environmental justice through education, direct action, and advocacy.

Voice and live our UU values through sponsorship of educational and artistic earth and social justice events at East Shore for the larger community, serving as a beacon of moral awareness and action.