Unitarian Universalism emerged from two heretical traditions within Christianity.
Although our faith movement weaves together many influences and includes people of diverse spiritualities. Unitarianism rejected the separation of God and humanity and the Trinity of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, while Universalism rejected the idea of hell. Together these threads of our theological ancestors embraced each other and formed a spiritual community that is committed to big questions and co-creating a more beautiful and just world in the here and now.
There’s a wide span of practices and beliefs that fall into the big tent of Unitarian Universalism, including people who dual-identify with another faith tradition, and we believe that the big spiritual questions and work worth doing in this world are better to take on together than alone. We are grounded in the idea and practice of covenant—the promises that we make to each other—not because we always get along or get it right, but because we see ourselves in relationship with others, always growing and learning, and always worthy.
For our history buffs, here are some additional historical resource links:
Unitarian Universalist History
Notable Unitarians for Social Change
Organized in 1829, the congregation of the First Unitarian Church of Rochester has always taken seriously its role as a religious community with a civic circumference. Our history is one of activism and issues, of challenges and community. We hope that learning something of our past will assist in achieving our visions for the future.
For an interesting look at some of the historical documents relevant to the First Unitarian Congregation, please see the catalog of our archival material in the Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation department of the University of Rochester.