Rev. Joan’s Blog – August 2021


Save our Democracy; Show Up

As UUA President Susan Frederick-Gray often reminds us, “we are living in precarious times.” And Susan said this before January 6, and bills across the country to suppress elections and threats in PA for an Arizona-style ballot audit. It is easy to get discouraged. But we must not. We must hold firm to our values of justice and equality and to our belief that we ALL matter.

In a presentation to the 8th Principle working group last week, Nicole Presley said, “The Pro- Democracy coalition is sleep-walking into the next election.” We need to wake them up!!

In my sermon to the Gettysburg congregation last Sunday, I shared my belief that those of us who walk the halls of the Capital and rally on the streets of our towns and cities could not do the necessary justice work required of us without the support, love, and connections of our UU congregations. On the other hand, we UUs in the pews (now Zoom rooms) cannot ignore our responsibility to our communities in these times. Democracy is not a spectator sport, and the anti-democracy initiatives will win if the pro-Democracy coalition doesn’t wake up and get energized.

Here are some activities UUJusticePA is planning for the Fall:
• I have scheduled six lobby days for this Fall. All are on Tuesday when the House of Representatives is in session: September 28, October 5 & 26, November 9&16, December 14. If the Capital closes because of the Delta Virus, I will set up Zoom meetings. We will begin visiting legislators in the following committees: Environmental Resources & Energy, Education, Health, Judiciary, & State Government.
• We are working on a web process to allow all of you to contact the republican legislators in your district who still refuse to certify the Nov 2020 Biden/Harris election. Our message is WE WILL NOT STOP HOLDING YOU ACCOUNTABLE.
• Two Special Interests series are in the works, the first is from our Good Government Team, “Rank Choice Voting Explained,” Friday, Sept 24 from 7:30-9:00. Another education program is being developed by the Reproductive Justice Team for October.
• Packets of UUJusticePA Brochures and Postcards will be mailed to congregation liaisons by the end of this month. We hope many of our congregations will have a UUJusticePA table or Zoom presentation on Sunday, September 26. By whatever means works for your congregation, it is imperative we wake up and make phone calls, send postcards and emails, and visit legislative offices (both in Harrisburg and local) when you can.
We cannot ignore the facts, the science, or the pleas of our marginalized neighbors. Wake Up and help us save our democracy. There is no time to lose.

Holding ground in our faith and moving justice forward in PA,Rev. Joan