First Unitarian Church

600 NW 13th St.
Oklahoma City
Oklahoma
73103
Senior Pastor: 
Mark Christian
Denomination: 
Unitarian Universalism
A breath of fresh air!
5

In a sea of conservative balderdash, it is refreshing to attend a church that does not constantly remind members that they're going to hell, regardless.  The members are friendly, the services are mostly "traditional", and the overall atmosphere is one of acceptance and understanding.  The First Unitarian Church is a leader in the Oklahoma City area for gay rights.  It is the oldest Unitarian church in the southwest, established in 1893, and has a long and colorful history of providing a home for views lacking in most mainstream churches.  The church's religious education program for youth is oustanding, and in particular offers teens the opportunity to explore their religious identity.  An active "sustainable living" group gathers most Sunday's at 10 AM to discuss issues relating to our stewardship of the environment.  Also at 10 AM, a vibrant adult education class meets to learn more about individual and community spirituality.  The church has had a long history of providing a platform for individuals and groups to discuss issues in the Church Forum, meeting at 10 AM.  Topics in the recent past include children and public education, "meatless Monday's", video's from Noam Chomsky on the "role of the radical intellectual," and a monthly review of the church's Change-4-Change recipient.  The Change-4-Change program provides that all cash donations on Sunday's will be given to a non-profit group, generally local, to help that organization expand and serve it's constituants.  If you looking to try something different, yet maintain a spiritual and moral message for all, the First Unitarian Church could be the answer.

Comments

The first time I walked into First Unitarian it was like coming home.  I had moderated Read and Discuss groups in the public library for a number of years.  When I entered Daniel Hall, I already knew a good number of people there from the discussions. 

I appreciate that the church does not have a list of doctrines that I have to believe or else.  Each member is encouraged to actively and responsibily seek spiritual meaning in their own way.  My husband and I don't attend Sunday services regularly, but we do participate in other church activities and have been members since 1980.  The community I find there provides a warm and caring spiritual familly regardless of the day of the week. 

In addition to challenging me along my spiritual journey, they also challenge my mind to consider difficult and sometimes controversial issues.  The beauty of this community is that there is no requirement that we agree with each other on all these issues. Only that we treat each other with love and respect. 

Sunday morning at any church doesn't provide much time to get to know others.  For me participating in other less structured church activities provides more opportunity to get to know each other. I'm sure this is true at all churches. 

Through the years, the people at first UU have come to be more than just my spiritual refuge and community of like-minded friends - they are extended family. I was married in this church and raised my children there.  It is a good place for family where children are taught to respect themselves and their fellow man. To use their minds and not be afraid to challenge the status quo. 

If you are looking for a church with a lot of spiritual structure and specific spiritual instructions or doctrines for you to follow, where everyone agrees about such issues, then this might feel a little uncomfortable - at least at first. But if you are looking for a place with a lot of built in flexibility and room for personal growth, This is it.

What seem to be the biggest subjects debated within Unitarian Universalist circles in recent years?  You mention that in some churches "everyone agrees about...issues" such as "spiritual instructions or doctrines," but UUs have more flexibility.  Still, the tendency does seem to be that of an enthusiastic religious/political/cultural liberalism, correct?  Maybe within that tendency some significant diversity of opinions exist, more than might be immediately apparent???  What do you think?