In addition to individual posts, this blog currently has two ongoing series: Book Notes, which briefly discuss books and journals relevant to the study of liberal religion, and Universalist Quote of the Day, which offers a daily quote taken from the Universalist tradition. These series are part of the blog’s purpose to encourage awareness and discussion of liberal religious history and contemporary practice. They are intended to gently help to plug gaps in overall UU knowledge and understanding: Book Notes does so by pointing out relevant books from liberal religion’s past and introducing themes from the academy to a wider readership that may not otherwise know about them, and the quotes do so by highlighting the relatively neglected Universalist side of Unitarian-Universalism’s dual denominational heritage.
Beginning next week, a third ongoing series will be debuted that is intended to help deal with yet another area of relatively fuzzy understanding: knowledge of the history of Unitarian-Universalism itself, especially the circumstances of how the two denominations were brought together and how the new association has operated in its nearly 50 years of life. Because most UUs are adult converts to the tradition, few actually have a good understanding of the history of the UUA, even though it is so recent and many of the major players are still alive. Oddly, it is historic Unitarianism that most UUs have at least a rudimentary understanding of, while both the classical period of Universalism and the recent period of Unitarian-Universalist development are relatively poorly understood. Therefore, a new series entitled Unitarian-Universalist Trivia Question of the Day will be created. The trivia questions will focus mostly on Unitarian-Universalism itself, i.e. the last 47 or so years of UU history, with occasional questions on Unitarian or Universalist history where they are directly relevant to how UUism came about and how it is run. People who think they know the answer will be welcome to post here; the correct answer and “winner” will be announced thereafter.
There may of course be some dates and other dry facts from history, but many questions will likely prove interesting to the UU reader who is unaware of the colorful events (and characters) involved in bringing the two denominations together and guiding the ship of UUism during the past several decades. Some questions may be quickly answered by Wikipedia, but others may involve quite a bit of research if you want to find the answer, even though it may be surprising that such issues are rarely talked about. With luck, this new series will be both fun and informative.