Saturday, December 31, 2005

31 December 2005

Hello fellow military UU’s,

And Happy New Year!

At the General Assembly in Ft. Worth, Texas this year, there was a program for UU’s in the Military. Those who organized the program did not have any idea how many would attend, but hoped for at least thirty. Around 200 people attended.

During the program, story after story was told by Military UU’s about their experiences, both as people of liberal faith in the military, and as military members, veterans, and families in a liberal faith.

One thing was clear from the meeting… the UUA is in need of an affiliate organization to help support UU Military members, veterans, families, and defense employees. We also need an organization to be a voice for our liberal faith within the military, to support our UU military chaplains, to aid in the formation of new UU military chaplains, and to work towards social action programs that will benefit our military.

Since General Assembly, a small working group has come together to work for the formation of such an independent affiliate organization, but we need your help. We are in need of dedicated individuals who share this vision to help form a “Charter Board” to draft the “By-laws” and other basic infrastructure to make this organization a reality.

Please visit and join the discussion forum if you wish to serve on the Board, or even if you just wish to provide your support and brainstorm with us.

Also, we invite you to check out the draft of our plan to found this UU Military Independent Affiliate organization.

The official public face of our efforts is the UU's in the Military Blog at (That's here, this was also posted in a few other places)

Our denomination is in need of an organization to outreach to the military, support military UU’s, and to help our congregations better understand and support Military members, families, veterans, and defense employees. Please come join us!

Yours in faith,

David Pyle
Former SGT, U.S. Army
On Behalf of the UU Military Affiliate Organization Working Group

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Hello all,

A friend of mine, a UU currently serving in the Air Force, brought a resource from the UU Washington Office for Advocacy to my attention, and I wanted to share it with you.

It is an article discussing the UUA's relationship with the military, and beginning the discussion about the support that we as a denomination need to be prepared to provide to soldiers, sailors, and airmen, especially those returning from war and their families while they are deployed.

All in all, it is an excellent document. I would have prefered to see more of a mention about supporting military members who are already UU's as well, we have to begin somewhere.

Many of the issues that are discussed in the article are the reasons why we are working to found a UU Affiliate Organizaiton for Military Members, Families, Veterans, and Defense employees.

I am going to provide the link, but also provide a link to a place where this document can be discussed...

Here is the article

If you would like to discuss ways we can implement ideas from this article in founding a UU Affiliate organization for the Military, follow the below link...

It found it heartwarming that a group in our denomination with no overt connection to the military was clear enough about the needs of soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines that the document shows. It also brings forth the problem of how some have been treated in our denomination.

For that article, I think the UU Washington Office for Advocacy should get a Bravo Zulu!

Yours in Faith,


Saturday, December 17, 2005

Sergeant First Class Paul R. Smith

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, March 3, 1863, has awarded in the name of Congress the Medal of Honor to Sergeant First Class Paul R. Smith for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty.

Courtesy of Bill Baar , get the full story here

Monday, December 12, 2005

Why We Do This

Hello All,

It has been sometime sense anyone updated, so I thought i would share some thoughts I had. I was recently asked by a fellow congregate of mine, and a good friend I might add, "What is your goal in [creating a UU Military Affiliate Ogranization]". She was curious and not confrontational. I explained to her that what we think of as the military, the aggression and the never surrender attitude, is only part of the story. In fact I think it is simply the surface of the story.

The amazing part of the stories that many Veterans tell isn't the battles or trials. It is the life long friendships that many of them had made. You never forget that person who lends you a helping hand and shares some of the most profound life experiences with you. I have personally seen Vets who have not seen each other in over 10 years fall into each others arms crying. It is a dignified, honorable, precise occupation to be in the military, it is also likely one of the most deep, emotionally bonding. and sharing experiences many of us have ever had.

I recently saw a television show, a documentary called In the Shadow of the Blade. It follows a restored Huey copter as it travels around the country connecting veterans and family members of those who lost their lives in the Vietnam conflict. The amazing part of this story is just what they where celebrating. It wasn't war - many didn't even understand why they where at war, it wasn't death. It was the celebration of a machine and people who where the healers and hero's. It was the people who faced danger and death to touch down and carry away the injured and pinned down. It was the Angel in OD Green descending from the heavens... To Take You Home.

It is for them, and for the similar hero's of every conflict and in the military today that makes me want to do this. They deserve a group of people who care about them, and can offer them a religious home that suits their needs.

A heart-felt Thank You to the crews and maintenance personnel of the Huey flying machines, to all Vietnam Veterans, and to all Veterans and Military members everywhere.

Until Then, and Always