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Why Would a Practicing Catholic Attend UU Services Every Other Week?


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A lot of Unitarian Universalists grew up in the Catholic church, but less common are those who maintain Catholic practice while also regularly attending and engaging with UU communities. In a refresh to a sermon given in 2014, Jon King explores his Catholic upbringing, current practicing status in both the Catholic church and UU community, and ways in which the two can overlap in Catholic UU harmony.

Read the full text of this sermon at

Published in: Spiritual
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Why Would a Practicing Catholic Attend UU Services Every Other Week?

  1. 1. Why Would a Practicing Catholic Attend UU Services Every Other Week? -Jon King
  2. 2. What are we doing here today?What are we doing here today? What this WILL be: Personal experience Lighthearted comparison of faiths Contradictions of modern Catholicism What this WON’T be: Detailed theology discussion Catechism refresher ◦ <records deleted> Unassailable truth
  3. 3. St. Aloysius Church, ca 2001St. Aloysius Church, ca 2001
  4. 4. “Catholics… …which I was until I reached the age of reason.” -George Carlin, 1996
  5. 5. The Ten Commandments 1. I am the Lord, your God. Thou shall bring no false idols before me. 2. Do not take the name of the Lord in vain. 3. Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy. 4. Honor thy father and thy mother. 5. Thou shall not kill/murder. 6. Thou shall not commit adultery. 7. Thou shall not steal. 8. Thou shall not bear false witness against your neighbor 9. Thou shall not covet thy neighbor's wife. 10. Thou shall not covet thy neighbor's possessions. The Seven UU Principles At Harmony we believe: 1. In the worth and dignity of every person; 2. That we should treat all people fairly and kindly; 3. That we should accept one another and encourage spiritual growth; 4. In a free and responsible search for truth and meaning; 5. That all people should have a say in the things that concern them; 6. In working to achieve peace and freedom; 7. And in caring for planet Earth, the home we share with all living things.
  6. 6. 1. Love the Lord your God with all your heart. 2. Love your neighbor as yourself. UU Equivalent: Principles 1 - 7 UU Equivalent: Sure, if that’s your thing.
  7. 7. Discussion 1)Have you ever had an “epiphany moment” with regards to your personal beliefs? Did it come from an unexpected source? 2)Is it possible to accept multiple spiritual beliefs as personal truth? Or is to make the attempt diluting and compromising one set or the other? 3)Comparing the Ten Commandments and the UU Principles can be a dangerous undertaking. Would you make connections? How? 4)For those that came to UU after being part of another religion, can you describe the acceptance of this fact (or lack thereof) by your family? Has your embracing of UU principles made an impact on the beliefs of anyone in your family? 5)Do you view Francis’ words as a true shift in the Church’s teachings toward a more progressive stance, or just the same stuff with a “cool dad” delivery? Are you excited, concerned, or indifferent about the possible changes to come? 6)Is the literal definition of Catholic as “universal” validated by its actions in modern society? Why or why not?
  8. 8. Closing Quote "There are elements within the church who say that if you are at odds with any of the teachings of the church, you are at odds with the church. I think the church is bigger than that.” -- Joe Biden