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UU History

Unitarian Universalism is a liberal religious tradition that was formed from the merger of two different religions: Unitarianism and Universalism. Both began in Europe hundreds of years ago. In America, the Universalist Church of America was founded in 1793, and the American Unitarian Association in 1825. In 1961, these denominations merged to form a new religion, Unitarian Universalism through the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA).

Both religions have long histories and have contributed important theological concepts that remain central to Unitarian Universalism. Originally, all Unitarians were Christians who didn't believe in the Holy Trinity of God (Father, Son, and Holy Ghost), but in the unity, or single aspect, of God. Later, Unitarian beliefs stressed the importance of rational thinking, a direct relationship with God, and the humanity of Jesus. Universalism emerged as a Christian denomination with a central belief in universal salvation; that is, that all people will eventually be reconciled with God.

Since the merger of the two denominations in 1961, Unitarian Universalism has nurtured its Unitarian and Universalist heritages to provide a strong voice for social justice and liberal religion.

List of Past Ministers

List of Past Moderators

Historical Society of Pennsylvania (HSP)

First, Second, and Third Universalist Church of Philadelphia Records Collection 680

The 1912 letter by Henry E. Bush, upon presentation of the first original record to the HSP.

The 1933 letter by Thomas Butler accompanying the original minutes from 1820 to 1920.

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