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Unitarian Universalism

            Unitarian Universalism (UU) is a liberal religion that originated from Christianity and Judaism. It is a religion that keeps an open mind to the religious questions people have had trouble with in all times and places. "We believe that personal experience, conscience and reason should be the final authorities in religion, and that in the end religious authority lies not in a book or person or institution, but in ourselves"(Robinson). This free idea allows the exploration of an individual's own faith, without the constrictiveness and dogmas that comes along with Orthodox like religions. .
             During the first three centuries of the Christian church, believers could choose from a variety of views about Jesus. Among these was a belief that Jesus was an entity sent by God on a divine mission. Therefore the word "Unitarian" developed, meaning the oneness of God. Another religious belief was universal salvation. This was the belief that God would condemn no person to eternal damnation. A Universalist believed that all people would be saved. In sixteenth-century Transylvania, Unitarian congregations were established for the first time in history. During the seventeenth century, reformers in several European countries formed churches that welcomed all who believed in the diversity of truth. Some of these reformers who were the Pilgrims and Puritans came to North America, and spread their ideas. The first parish of Plymouth in Massachusetts was a Unitarian Church (Harris). Both Unitarians and Universalists became active participants in many social justice movements in the nineteenth and twentieth century. Some well-known people are, Charles Spear, Clara Barton, Dorothea Dix, Susan B. Anthony, John Quincy Adams, Charles Darwin, Alexander Graham Bell, Florence Nightingale, Ben Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson. .
             In 1961, Unitarians and Universalists merged to become the Unitarian Universalist Association, and formed their headquarters in Boston.

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