Social Justice – Select Activities

Black Lives Matter is a movement and a stance in response to this reality: the United States was built on a legacy of slavery, racism, and oppression that continues to take new, ever-changing forms. To say that “black lives matter” doesn’t mean that black lives are more important than other lives, or that all lives don’t matter. The systemic devaluing of Black lives calls us to bear witness, even as we acknowledge that oppression takes many intersecting forms.

The First Unitarian Society is an open welcoming, inclusive religious community where people of all races, ethnicities, and cultures see their cultural identities reflected and affirmed in every aspect of congregational life—worship, fellowship, leadership, governance, religious education,and social justice.

2016 – Winner of Ambassador Award from the Governor’s Council on Mental Health Stigma. In 2016, the First Unitarian Society was the winner of the prestigious Ambassador Award for its Mental Health Ministry.

2017 – The First Unitarian Society becomes a Mental Health Stigma-Free Zone In January, 2017, The Board of the First Unitarian Society voted to support the Bridgeway-Plainfield Stigma-Free Zone Campaign. and designated the First Unitarian Society of Plainfield as a Mental Health Stigma-Free Zone. The Board approved participation of the Society in the initiative to make Plainfield a Mental Health Stigma-free Zone and appointed congregant and mental health professional Mark Williams, “stigma-free
ambassador” to the newly formed City Steering Committee for the Bridgeway-Plainfield Stigma-Free Zone Campaign. On March 13, 2017, the City of Plainfield passed a resolution making Plainfield a Mental Health Stigma-Free Zone.

HIV AIDS Community
The First Unitarian Society of Plainfield proudly hosted Plainfield’s First and Second World Aids Day celebrations in 2015 and 2016 in partnership with Iris House and the Hyacinth AIDS Foundation. In 2017, we hosted 3 special Iris House events. In 2018, we continue our partnership with Iris House, hosting social, informational and testing events.

Iris House frequently hosts HIV Testing events and workshops at the Society. In 2016, the Society centered two worship services on our commitment to the HIV/AIDS community.

We Are Committed to Interfaith Activities
Rev. Ann Marie Alderman and Rev. Damaris Ortega join in song at a Joint Service at United Church of Christ Congregational Plainfield on August 21, 2016. This was one of two joint services that was shared by our congregations in the summer 2016.

The First Unitarian Society is an active member of the Union County Interfaith Coordinating Council (UCICC). In January 2017, we hosted an Interfaith Refugee and Resettlement panel discussion with the UCICC.

In February 2017, the Society collaborated with the the United Church of Christ Congregational in co-facilitating Conversations on Race, an in-depth series of conversations on race with an interfaith inter-racial group of participants.