The Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Harford County is a warm and welcoming congregation of 150 members with 58 children and youth registered in our Faith Formation programs.
Our Children Are Our Future
What do you want your children to know about religious and humanist teachings? God or no God? Perhaps more emphasis on our natural world? We teach and talk about all these topics and more with our children. We are parents and grandparents who teach in our Unitarian Universalist faith. We follow our Seven Principles; however, they are not a creed. Our faith has no creed. We draw from a living tradition—one that focuses on reason as well as spiritual teachings from wise humans and earth-centered truths.
UUFHC is grounded in the philosophies of many persons from many different religious and nonreligious traditions that are over 400 years old. From the old Hebrew and modern Jewish teachings, Buddhist practices, Christian biblical sources, and Humanist understandings, we offer your children the chance to reach their own conclusions about our world and their places in it. We do not tell them how or what to believe. They make up their own minds.
Founded in 1956
Our UUFHC was legally recognized in Harford County by the American Unitarian Association in December 1955 and finally received documentation in 1956. In 1961, Universalists merged their denomination with the Unitarians, forming the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA). Since then, UUFHC parents and the Executive Board have used guidelines for teaching curriculum from the UUA. Starting from just a few families, the religious education department (RE) grew along with the congregation.
When the congregation outgrew its building on Lee Street in Bel Air in the early 1990s, the plans for a new building purposefully included a wing of classrooms for children from nursery through high school. The religious education program is now known as Faith Formation.
The congregation continued to grow and was served by several temporary ministers who preached on a routine basis with other UU congregations in Pennsylvania and Maryland. Three ministers were ‘called’ by the congregation after diligent searches. Our first called minister was the Reverend Alice Blair Wesley. Reverend Wesley moved on to retirement, and was followed by the Reverend Lisa G. Ward, who served for more than 17 years. Our third and current called minister is the Reverend María McCabe.
Under their combined leadership over time, and with the personal involvement of members, UUFHC championed the LGBTQ community and was prominent in the formation of legislation for legal marriages for all Marylanders, no matter their sexual identification. This endeavor began with UUFHC becoming a Welcoming Congregation. Another highlight of this congregation’s involvement with its community is the annual Silent Witness Initiative. The focus of this initiative is on ending domestic violence in our county.
Faith Formation Highlights
One highlight of our Faith Formation program that students value is visiting other churches, mosques, and temples during the middle school and high school years. Speakers from other faiths are also invited to talk with our students. Another highlight is an annual youth-led Sunday worship service, where each class of students is encouraged to create its own part that they then present to the congregation. In the past, this special service has included students who talk about their faith progress.
Another highlight for the high school youth group (YRUU) is a trip to Boston to see the UUA headquarters and other places in Unitarian Universalist history. The youth fund this trip with their own efforts through yard work, bake sales, and the like. Our children learn more than religious history. They learn what it means to be cared for and how to care for others.
Director of Faith Formation
The Director of Faith Formation (DFF) position is important to our members. It is challenging work, but it can also be very rewarding work. Teaching children who are encouraged to speak their opinions requires an adult’s guidance. Are you that adult?