Assembling the Myriad Bits February 2021

Lots of essays in my computer waiting to edit for the website. I welcome being able to share them on the website with others. Today began with a worship service at All Souls in DC, followed by a Re-evaluation Counseling session, a quick lunch and then another zoom call. A Come to the Table is The Anthology on Black UU clergy women and it is on the editor’s desk, Mary Benard, at Skinner House Books.

I have to blame it on Mark Morrison-Reed’s book, Black Pioneers in a White Denomination that was published in 1980. The book was released a year before the first Black woman, Rev. Yvonne Seon was ordained and fellowshipped. I am always intrigued by the fact that Black males were welcomed as clergy into Unitarians and Universalists almost one hundred years before Black women. Nevertheless, that was the motivating factor for my interest because I wondered where and who were the Black UU women? My efforts began, to initiate and assemble ideas, research and create something that would be inviting.

During the pandemic I began to think about all this and how to assemble all the myriad bits and pieces of information and how to be in conversation with other writers, researchers, academicians, etc. that were actively writing and researching UU women. I also realized very recently that if there was almost no information on Black UU women, then there was even less, if non-existent, on Black UU girls.

As the Fall, 2020 Minn’s Lecturer I presented a series of three lectures at General Assembly, First Unitarian Church in Chicago and the UU Congregation of Atlanta. In addition, I have done several homilies that allowed me to continue to hone my research. One lecture and panel discussion, titled “Racial Justice & Unitarianism from Reconstruction to WW I,” really pushed me to more deeply explore Black Unitarian women’s roles in the suffragette and temperance movements.

Aha, so much to do and so little time!