There's no secret that I'm in a long, slow departure from institutional Unitarian Universalism in the direction of the United Church of Christ. Why now? I could theologize it, but a bigger reason than theology is geography.
- Hubby and I live in Washington, D.C. and don't intend to leave.
- The one Christian church in the UUA in the area was my last pastorate, and that didn't end pleasantly. But even if it had, I wouldn't be a parishoner there given the customs of ministerial practice.
- The rest of the (transit-accessible) Unitarian Universalist congregations in the area make up a spectrum that don't interest me much. On the other hand, the United Church of Christ spectrum interests me mucho. There even exists a strain of Mercersburg liturgy Reformed Church UCC (that I like) that's not only "in the area" but is the closest church to our house. Proximity matters.
- That said, there are parts of the country -- Mississippi and South Carolina -- that the UCC is almost absent or nasty towards gays, but has Unitarian Universalist churches. In this context, I would stay with the Unitarian Universalists, even if the congregations were eccletic or non-theistic. But I don't live there.
- Which makes me think that if I weren't a Southerner, or if the UCC did a better job in the South, things would have turned out very differently.
How many variations on that theme are there, I wonder. And it makes me think that you have to have geographically convenient churches in this mobile society. Note that in my case, living in Massachusetts would probably even accelerate the cross-over, despite it being one of the strongest areas for Unitarian Universalists, and that I would likely cross over slower in those areas where Unitarian Universalism is weakest. Not because it is weak but because alternatives are few and poor. End of roving thought.