Partnerships between UU and Unitarian congregations around the world forge connections and build lasting relationships that strengthen each others’ faith, opening all of us to new vistas of understanding. UUPCC helps connect churches looking for partners. We offer a wide variety of resources and support for US and Canadian UU churches contemplating partnership.
Churches wanting to explore congregational partnership can check out the resources on this website such as FAQs of Partnership, submit an application, or contact us to get started. It's easy to get involved in this exciting international movement. UUPCC is here to create new partnerships and support our members - you and people like you - who nurture the relationships that are the heart of partnership.
What Partners Do - Parity, Not Charity
Partnerships provide individuals, small groups and full congregations a way to connect with the larger fellowship of our faith. Our models are based on parity in partnership not charity. We value building relationships between UUs that benefit all in both small and large ways - improving cultural understanding, supporting communities and helping to develop individual, religious, educational, and economic opportunities.
Partner churches base their work together around building relationships. They do a variety of things to keep those relationships strong. Partners write, video conference, email and keep in touch through social media to build friendships that can last a lifetime and cross borders. These relationships weave together the lives and stories of people who share UU values of freedom of conscience, tolerance for others, a reasoned approach, and a willingness to grow in our religious understandings.
In addition to minister-to-minister connections, partners focus on making connections that are broad and reach into the community. These include connections with religious education classes, teachers, businessmen, women’s groups, choirs and ministers. Partners send greetings at holidays, share prayers, sermons, history, music, and religious education for children and adults.
Partners share their understandings of our common liberal religious values and live first hand the reality of the interdependent web of all life. Visits both ways by ministers, church members, youth groups, and even choirs bring the connections closer.
Characteristics of a Strong Partnership
With over 20 years of experience we begin to understand what it takes to have a strong partnerships in light of the geographic distances between partners. Here are a few of those characteristics.
- Strong partnerships have strong support from the ministers in both congregations.
- Strong partners communicate frequently. A small group within the church cares for the partnership, keeps the congregation informed, and plans visits - here to there and there to here.
- Strong partners have good communication strategies. They have determined how, when and who will communicate.
- Strong partners share a mindset of mutuality. Partnership is not about charity.
- Strong partners have a long term point of view; and have a willingness to see it through.
- Strong partners are willing to listen and not assume what the other wants or needs.
- Strong partners are open to the emotions and surprises of congregational partnership.
- Strong partners seek ways for some in the congregation to travel to visit the other. Face-to-face contact is critical.
Where We Partner
Our work is – first and foremost – about being friends and connecting in many ways with those who share our faith tradition around the world. We have partnerships with Unitarians and Universalists in the Transylvania Region of Romania, Hungary, Czech Republic, India, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Uganda, Burundi, Kenya, and the United Kingdom. map
Partnership with Unitarian Universalists and Unitarians around the world helps grow our faith. Our shared values of liberty of conscience and individual thought in matters of faith, the inherent worth and dignity of every person; justice and compassion in human relations; and responsible stewardship of the earth’s living system. These are values that are needed all around the world - not just here in the United States. Together we are stronger, our numbers enlarge and we grow our faith.