Saturday 2 May 2009

Small Gatherings

Knut Heidelberg now seems to call himself a Superintendent Minister or Bishop, which (if properly so) makes three in worldwide Unitarianism. He has taken up the Norwegian tradition (that was two traditions) and revived it via small groups and installed a Pastor at Skien (probably for another small group) and he has installed a minister in Denmark (another Unitarianism that came and went; though Denmark never really had a Unitarian connected liberal tradition, as I understand it, but a different experience based on one chapel). The French presence has a news item about this Danish event; France is again an addition to the main centres of Unitarianism: central Europe, Britain and North America.

These are small revivals, and small revivals are the means to gather more people.

Knut seems to want to promote what I call the central European Unitarian tradition via his own ordination in Hungary, as held within the Hungarian and Transylvanian (Rumanian) Churches. It is noted that the tradition has occasional Holy Communion, as illustrated among the few gathered in Skien.

Meanwhile, in the United States, a panic seems to be part of the electoral bid of one hopeful for General Assembly President in that membership of the denomination has fallen for the first time in donkeys years, by some 74 (yep, 74) and some figures quoted are that candidate Rev. Peter Morales's church is down 1.16 percent while the UUA as a whole is down 0.02 percent.

Obviously if you are used to year on growth every year the chill of a sudden dip can be quite a worry. Problems problems!

Addition: While on Unitarian matters here, Pete Seeger, folk musician (recently singing This Land is Your Land at the Presidential inauguration) and Unitarian Universalist, features on the BBC as he is 90 years old. Listen on Monday 4th May 2009 at 15:00 on BBC Radio 4.


Hugh said...

'Addition: While on Unitarian matters here, Pete Seeger, folk musician (This Land is Your Land) and Unitarian Universalist, features on the BBC as he is 90 years old. Listen on Monday 4th May 2009 at 15:00 on BBC Radio 4 '

Yup caught this today ( Sat 2nd May ). It was great :)

Regards ..

Robin Edgar said...

As I have pointed out in various comments on ChaliceChick's blog posts about the UUA's apparent decline in membership, it would seem that the UUA officially "lost" anywhere from 40 to 50 whole U*U congregations which failed to certify their membership in the UUA in February. This is the second largest annual loss of U*U congregations by the UUA in its history. I expect that the failure of 40 to 50 (or possibly even a few more) whole U*U "churches" over the span of one church year is of much greater concern to UUA leaders than the loss of 74 individual members.

Pluralist (Adrian Worsfold) said...

Without addressing further your substantive point, it's interesting that a denomination that is alive generates such an intense oppositional stance as yours, even for an institution dedicated to being inclusive - though congregations being inclusive often fails to match a particular individual and may need some shopping around - something difficult within much of the UK.

Chalice Chick and connections is my support for that relayed news item. All those news items are second hand relays.

rick allen said...

Happy birthday to Pete, but "This Land is Your Land" is by Woody Guthrie.

Pluralist (Adrian Worsfold) said...

Thank you for that correction to my over rapid entry, Rick, and so I've added to what's in the brackets.