The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Central Nassau is a community of religious persons whose beliefs and ethics are freely chosen and constantly evolve throughout their journey through life. While Unitarian Universalists seek the guidance and inspiration of the great pioneers of religious insight of many cultures, their final religious authority is their own reason and personal understanding. We love people and are inclusive. We are proud to be a Welcoming Congregation. We strive to widen our circle of inclusivity so that we can extend a heartfelt and warm welcome to friends, and visitors.
The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Central Nassau began its life with the merger of two local congregations, one Unitarian, the other Universalist, not long after the national merger of the American Unitarian Association and the Universalist Church of America. Each group brought differing, valued gifts to the new partnership. The Universalist Church of Floral Park, founded in 1930, brought with its members a long record of stability and experience in the art of churching. The younger Unitarian Fellowship of Garden City was able to offer the dynamism and enthusiasm associated with a new religious venture. It was decided that the blending of these two congenial yet disparate groups warranted a new meeting place. The Universalist building was sold to another congregation. The Unitarians had no building originally, having met in people’s homes. In 1961, the first meeting of the newly formed UUCCN was held in the fall of 1961 in the chapel on the Mitchel Field Air Base. Reverend Kenneth Smith, minister of the Floral Park Universalist Church, agreed to serve the new church for a one-year period. 1962-1967 Reverend Farley Wheelwright was called by the merged group to be their first minister. During this period the Garden City property was purchased and the present building erected and dedicated in 1965.
The President's Award for Volunteer Service to the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations is presented to persons designated by the UUA President who have offered extraordinary and vital service to the UUA as volunteers. On Sunday, April 30, 2006, the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Central Nassau, Garden City, New York, voted unanimously to extend a call, which was accepted, to the Reverend Hope Johnson to be their Settled Minister. Their public announcement of their call to her includes the following statement: Excited about her ministry and our congregational growth, it is evident from her engaging smile that she loves people and has fully embraced her call to ministry. Hope is a spiritual presence who invites us to share our stories as we journey together. A weaver, Hope brings people together in meaningful and inclusive ways. A builder, Hope is creating inclusive community. Always mindful of “the other,” Hope encourages us to work in partnership in our shared ministry. Hope’s theology is grounded in hospitality and love. Engaged on the congregational, district and continental levels, she “practices what she preaches” as she brings people together. Passionate about leadership development and support, she’s been sharing the “good news” of Unitarian Universalism since 1990, when she joined the Community Church of New York. Hope challenges us to live our faith, to transcend our borders, and to grow in spirit, and in love. Hope’s service to our faith movement includes serving as: * Chair of the Nominating Committee of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) * Chair of the Committee on Ministry and Anti-Racism/Anti-Oppression and Multicultural Committee of the Unitarian Universalist Ministers Association (UUMA) * Good Offices Person (UUMA) * Member of the Family Matters Task Force (UUA) * Family Network Coordinator of the Diverse and Revolutionary Unitarian Universalist Multicultural Ministries (DRUUMM) Steering Committee * Trustee of the Metro New York District Board (twice) * Co-chair of the District Anti-Racism and Diversity Committee (ARDC) of Metro New York * Facilitator and Board Member of the leadership school that serves both Joseph Priestley and Metro New York Districts, * Jubilee World Trainer (UUA) * Adult-at-large Member of the Youth Council for the continental UUA Having spent time in many different countries, Hope believes that travel has given her an international perspective on life. She describes herself as “Jamaican, by way of the world,” and credits much of her involvement and success to family—both immediate and extended, which includes her Unitarian Universalist family. She has a young adult daughter named Jova, who, like Mom, is a leader who is very involved in our movement on the continental and district levels. Hope has integrated her work in building the Beloved Community into every aspect of her life and ministry. With her very optimistic outlook and her commitment for the long haul, Hope loves people and is not afraid to ask the question: "What's not to love?" With her warm spirit and disarming smile, Hope is a tireless worker; she makes it all look so easy. Her name is an affirmation of her essence and the gift she brings to us all. She is the Rev. Hope, and that says it all. Newsday 2/15/14 "Garden City Church Leader Living A Legacy"
We believe in:
The inherent worth and dignity of every person;
Justice equity and compassion in human relations;
Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;
A free and responsible search for truth and meaning;
The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large;
The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all;
Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.