Information for UU-UNO Envoys and congregational action
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News and updates from the UU-UNO to keep you informed.
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Dear ,

This month many of us celebrated United Nations Sunday with a special worship service and took time on October 24 to honor the 74th birthday of the United Nations. As shared in a recent United Nations Day blog post written by UU-UNO Director Bruce Knotts, while it's important to celebrate the accomplishments of the United Nations over the years, we must focus much of our efforts in working to make sure that the UN stays strong into the future. A budget crisis at the UN caused by countries failing to fulfill their dues is threatening the institution as a whole. If you're in the U.S. and you haven't yet, please take a second to write to your congressperson and urge the U.S. to pay its dues.

Here are the minutes from the October Envoy conference calls. Our next call will be November 19th - please RSVP here.

As always, please reach out if you have any questions or would like further information about anything in this newsletter!

In faith, love, hope, and justice,

Allison Hess

International Engagement Associate

For Envoy News Archives, please see the Envoy News web page.

Some recommended text to put in your congregation's newsletter.

On United Nations Day, Thursday, October 24, 2019 the UN announced an upcoming global dialogue about where our world is headed. The global dialogue will be launched in January 2020. The year 2020 marks the 75th anniversary and the dialogues will be centered around looking towards the 100th anniversary of the United Nations and considering the world we want, whether we are on the right track, and how to get there through collaborative action. Unitarian Universalists around the world will be encouraged to participate in these dialogues, which, as the UN has noted, "come at a time when the world is more inter-connected than ever before, and facing a host of problems that need to be faced through global cooperation; but also a time when nations are retreating from the institutions set up to address such challenges." The Unitarian Universalist United Nations Office's ongoing work seeks to keep UU values of inclusion, justice, and peace as a high priority at the United Nations and beyond.


Please complete the following tasks by the end of November.

  1. If you didn't already: Share details about your congregation's UN Sunday service or event at
  2. Consider if your congregation will send a group to attend the Intergenerational Spring Seminar. Registration opens in early December - start raising funds now.
October Review: (1) Have a great UN Sunday (2) Share details about your UN Sunday event.
Our Planet, Our Future event at SUNY Global Center
A look behind, a look ahead

October 14: UUA offices closed for Indigenous People's Day.
October 24: United Nations Day.
October 25: UN Day Event "
Our Planet, Our Future" featuring UU-UNO Director Bruce Knotts (photo above).
October 27: United Nations Sunday.
November 19: November Envoy Conference Call.
November 28-29: UUA Offices closed for Thanksgiving Holiday.


The following "Time to Act" suggestions for October 2019 will be related to the Ninth Sustainable Development Goal: Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization, and foster innovation - focusing on target 9.1 (Develop quality, reliable, sustainable, and resilient infrastructure, including regional and transborder infrastructure, to support economic development and human well-being, with a focus on affordable and equitable access for all...) SDG 9? WHY IT MATTERS!
  • Think about how industry impacts the lives and well-being of congregants and community-members, and use social media to push for policymakers to prioritize the SDGs.
  • Are the buildings in your town fully accessible to people with disabilities? Are the restrooms accessible and inclusive for people regardless of gender identity or expression? Are new buildings being built, and are they being built sustainably? Rally the community to ensure that local infrastructure is both sustainable and inclusive.

Equity in Action: Gender in an Intersecting World

United Nations Day was October 24 and many congregations had their UN Sunday services or events around that date. If your congregation isn't on my list (see below) please let me know and I will add it!
Next Step: This is required for congregations hoping to achieve Blue Ribbon status this year!
  • Share your UN Sunday Service on the web map. While you're there, take a look at what other congregations have done this or last year! There are instructions on that page; if you still have trouble, send your blurb to me and I can put it online for you - or see if someone in your congregation can help!

September 1: UU Congregation at Montclair, NJ (Bruce speaking)
October 13: Murray Unitarian Church in Attleboro, MA
(Allison speaking)
Unitarian Church of All Souls in New York, NY (Bruce speaking at Adult RE)
October 20: Kingston Unitarian Fellowship, ON (Allison speaking)
Unitarian Church of All Souls in New York, NY (Bruce speaking at Adult RE)
Conejo Valley UU Fellowship in Newbury Park, CA
First Unitarian Church of Los Angeles, CA
UU Congregation of Frederick, MD
Unitarian Universalist Church of Fort Myers, FL
First Parish in Bedford, MA Unitarian Universalist
Community Church Unitarian Universalist in New Orleans, LA
October 27: First Unitarian Church of Providence, RI (Bruce speaking)
San Marcos UU Fellowship, TX (Allison speaking)
All Souls UU Church in Watertown, NY
Cedar Lane UU Church in Bethesda, MD
Unitarian Fellowship of Fredericton, NB
First Unitarian Church of Portland, OR
UU Church of Arlington, VA
Vancouver Unitarians in Vancouver, BC
UU Church of Olinda in Ruthven, ON
November 3: UU Congregation of Shelter Rock in Manhasset, NY
November 10: Community Church of New York, NY Unitarian Universalist
November 24: UU Congregation of Central Nassau, NY (Bruce speaking)
December 8: UU Fellowship of Huntington, NY

January 12: UU Congregation of Sussex County, NJ (Bruce speaking)
February 2: Unitarian Society of New Haven in Hamden, CT (Bruce speaking)

Submission deadline February 1, 2020

Did you host a UN Sunday service in October? Did the speaker give an inspiring sermon related to the theme Equity in Action: Gender in an Intersecting World? Please encourage that person (maybe it was you!) to submit that sermon to the Dana Greeley Sermon Competition! They could have the chance to win $500 and have their sermon featured on our website and social media. While all submissions will be considered, those highlighting the work of the United Nations and the UU-UNO will be given priority consideration.

April 16-18, 2020 - New York City

Our next Intergenerational Spring Seminar will take place in New York City, April 16-18, 2019 with youth and their sponsors arriving for orientation in the evening on April 15. The theme for this year's Seminar is climate justice. Start making plans now as registration will open in December and the rates will go up mid-January. Be an early bird! You can find rates online now.
Special Young Adult Rates! The team hopes for more Young Adults between the ages of 18 and 35 to attend the Seminar - including those who have attended before as Youth. So the Young Adult registration rate includes lodging at HI New York! If any Young Adults do not wish to stay at the hostel, there is an additional discount available during the registration process.
Be aware: Youth and their sponsors also will stay at the hostel as part of their registration costs, and other attendees are responsible for finding their own housing.

Find more at

In Praise of the Non-Nuclear World

By Joanne Dufour, UU-UNO Disarmament Volunteer

There are many aspects to helping our planet disarm meaningfully. 108 countries are now part of treaties that have established nuclear-free zones around the world. They are making a concerted effort to create a nuclear-free planet.......

Happy 74th Birthday, United Nations

By Bruce Knotts, UU-UNO Director

On the 74th birthday of the United Nations, we celebrate the UN's accomplishments while also recognizing the urgency of taking action to keep the institution strong as it comes under threat from the rise of authoritarianism and isolationism around the world. The UN is more important now than ever.......

Why did UUs Buy Stock in a Gun Company?

By Sally Connolly, Disarmament Activist

I'm a member of the Preventing Gun Violence Task Force at the Unitarian Society of New Haven. We bought shares in two companies that manufacture firearms. "What?!," you may be asking. Usually activists shy away from investing in so-called "sin" stocks.......

Marching For Our Lives, Uplifting Love

By Micaela Lattimer, Young Adult Gun Violence Prevention Activist

My best friend just turned eighteen. I have known her for nine years but all I can think about is how tight she now hugs me when she says goodbye, or that ever since Charlotte died she says "I love you" a lot more.......

Keep yourself and your congregation informed about important news coming from the UN
Ending open defecation in Nepal - After a nation-wide campaign towards UN Sustainable Development Goal 6 (water & sanitation), in collaboration with the UN's Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council, Nepal has declared all districts of the country free from open defecation.

Maritime emissions - If emissions from the maritime industry are not cut, we are headed for "an environmental disaster", Isabelle Durant, the deputy head of the UN trade body, UNCTAD, told the Global Maritime Forum summit on Wednesday.

Syria constitution talks - Work on drafting a new foundational text for war-torn Syria officially began at the UN in Geneva on Wednesday Oct. 30 with representatives from the Syrian Government and opposition sitting face to face and preparing to discuss the country’s future for the first time in the nearly nine-year conflict.

Kashmir human rights - The people of Indian-administered Kashmir continue to be deprived of numerous basic freedoms, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said recently, before urging the Indian authorities "to unlock the situation".

This work is made possible by the generosity of member congregations and individual donors.

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