November-December Share the Plate Justice Partner is Bend the Arc: Pittsburgh

Posted by on Nov 3, 2018 in Feature Stories, News | Comments Off on November-December Share the Plate Justice Partner is Bend the Arc: Pittsburgh

This congregation is committed to sharing one half of the cash offering received each Sunday with a justice partner.

Our November-December Share the Plate partner is Bend the Arc: Pittsburgh. Bend the Arc is part of a national movement of tens of thousands of progressive Jews that believes in the beautiful but unfulfilled promise of this country as a land of opportunity, justice, and equality for all. In the face of racism, inequality, and the politics of fear, we are asked to rise up with courage to act boldly for justice, believing that together we have the power to transform this country.

Join the Strategic Planning Group

Posted by on Sep 17, 2018 in News | Comments Off on Join the Strategic Planning Group

The Board of Trustees is initiating a strategic planning process to help create a common vision for our future.  As such, it has developed the below charter for the formation of a Strategic Planning Group.

Strategic Planning Group Charter

as of September 17, 2018

Name: Strategic Planning

Background: The Board of Trustees believes that developing a strategic plan will benefit Allegheny by creating a common vision for our future.

Purpose/Goal: Develop a concise, actionable strategic plan for Allegheny UU that reflects our mission and the vision, with an emphasis on how we become more welcoming, inclusive, and accessible. The plan should identify priority areas and outline short-, mid-, and long-term steps to achieve them.

 Desired Number of Members: 4-6

Chairperson:  Selected by members. Responsibilities include scheduling meetings, logistics, running meetings, ensuring progress on overall plan development, progress reports to Board of Trustees

Facilitator: Terri Hammond. Responsibilities include ensuring agreements on meeting agendas are followed, as well as ensuring overarching progress on plan development.

 Group Member Qualifications:

  • Committed to the future of Allegheny
  • A member in good standing, which means an annual financial contribution of record, regular attendance at services and events
  • Trusted by others
  • Demonstrates healthy communications and conflict management skills

Expectations of Members:

  • Attend and participate fully in meetings
  • Lead some aspect of work (research, writing, input, etc)
  • If cannot attend, inform chair in advance and provide status on action items
  • Commit to Allegheny Leadership Covenant (currently in development)

 Time Commitment and Timeline:

  • Estimated 1-2 hours/week depending on tasks.
  • Ideally focused 6-mo period for development of plan
  • First meeting joint meeting with Board 12pm Oct 28th
  • Monthly updates to board on progress and needed support
  • Update on progress with areas for input at January mid-year meeting
  • Final plan for presentation at May annual meeting

Resources Available:

  • 2017 Congregational Input on Engaging Volunteers
  • 2008-10 Long-Range Planning Background

Group Formation:

  • Communication to begin week of Sept 17th
  • To volunteer, send email to boardexec at by October 7th
  • Board will select final group and inform those who volunteered by October 21st

Share the Plate supports Casa San José

Posted by on Sep 4, 2018 in News, Social Justice Activities | Comments Off on Share the Plate supports Casa San José

During July and August we collected $777 for Casa San José, a community resource center in Beechview that advocates for and empowers immigrants from Latinxs by promoting integration and self-sufficiency. Founded in 2014, Casa San José has grown to become a go-to source of support to help underserved Latinx immigrants access the assistance and services they need, including interpretation, case management, and protection for immigrants at risk of deportation.



Allegheny’s Share the Plate program began in 2010 and directs half of our Sunday plate collection to justice partners doing important work in the communities of Pittsburgh’s North Side and beyond. To date we have collected and disbursed $32,434 to 41 justice partners. If you know of an organization or project doing good works contact <sharetheplate at>.

White Supremacy & UU?

Posted by on Mar 15, 2018 in Feature Stories, From Rev. Dave, Justice Opportunities, News, Social Justice Activities | Comments Off on White Supremacy & UU?

Love church allegheny Unitarian Universalist spirituality community nourish spirit worship

All of us need all of all of us

On February 4, 2018, Allegheny’s Get Woke/Stay Woke and the Worship Ministry answered the call from the Black Lives of Unitarian Universalism Organizing Collective (BLUU) to create a worship experience centering the voices of Unitarian Universalists of color from across the denomination.

Grateful to be part of a church that has been doing a lot of good things for years that BLUU has challenged Unitarian Universalists to do, like lifting voices of people of color in worship and actively engaging with local organizations that are run by people of color; we still remain vigilant to recognize, address, and heal from remnants of the legacy of White Supremacy that continue to live within the culture and structures of even this Beloved Community of spirit and engaged compassion.

Conscious of the characteristics of White Supremacy culture, our engagement with BLUU challenges and inspires us to live even more deeply into the Beloved Community we seek. Not content to tolerate diversity, we celebrate it. Not seeking to resolve conflict, we welcome it as a healthy sign of life. Not enduring messiness, we embrace the bless of mess. Not giving in to the urgency of now, we live into the deep presence of now. Not reacting with defensiveness, we respond to agitation and criticism with faithful curiosity. Not attending to measurables only, we revel in the immeasurable values of emotional intelligence, conscientious process, and radical inclusion. Not adjusted to hierarchical power, we collaborate and encourage all stakeholders to share in responsibility for leadership. Not relying on the myth of objectivity, we recognize that all of us need all of all of us and lean into learning from those with world views radically different than our own. Not resting in a presumed right to comfort, we are creatively inspired by discomfort to grow our soul.

We’re not looking to ply a new dogma. Nor are we given to the self-righteousness of perfectionism of those who announce themselves as enlightened. We know we will fail. And we commit to “fail forward.”

And so we become the change we seek in the world.

[published March 15, 2018]

A group of Unitarian Universalist leaders have asked our congregations to foster a deeper understanding of how White Supremacy and institutional racism intersect even within our UU institutions–like our congregations and the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) itself. Clearly, the UUA is not White Supremacist in philosophy or theology. But just as clearly, our history is full of assumptions and policies that carried notions of the supremacy of Northern European values and the natural inferiority of other “races.”

Part of healing from this legacy is listening–listening especially to UU People of Color who are our leaders– and taking seriously their admonitions. Even when–maybe especially when it makes some of us uncomfortable. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that we chose the term “White Supremacy.” We knew it would make some of us squirm.

It’s serendipitous (which is, as I sometimes say, another word for “God”) that the spiritual focus for worship this month is “Freedom with Responsibility.” We are free from dogma, free to create the church that our neighborhood and world needs now. So we have to take responsibility for the church we build, our beliefs, and behaviors.

love church spiritual racism racial justice african american allegheny unitarian universalist church pittsburgh Rev. Tines preaching it from the pulpit at Allegheny–or what he affectionately calls “my UU church.”
For our congregation, taking responsibility by joining in the “White Supremacy Teach-In” is part of an ongoing work. Here’s the worship synopsis I wrote for Sunday, May 7, 2017, following on Rev. Deryck Tine’s powerful personal reflections the previous Sunday:

Taking responsibility for creating intentional community is extremely counter-cultural in our place and time. In response to Leaders of Color in the UUA encouraging all UUs to reflect on the institutional structures and legacy of White Supremacy, Rev Dave celebrates our annual Founders Sunday by exploring from his perspective the ways that spiritual community intentionally offers both comfort and affliction… and might just save humanity.

Following our May 7 worship, we continued exploring the damaging effects of toxic Whiteness and how to work through it to a place of compassionate and well-informed action during a specially re-scheduled “Stay Woke” gathering.

Some people refer to the Unitarian Universalist faith as “A Movement.” But of course it’s more. Sometimes we have to take a stand. We take many stands. But we don’t stay in one place. To do so would be to have a dead faith. In the words of the Ghanaian song Woyaya we sometimes sing, “We are going. Heaven knows where we are going. But we know within.”

Here’s to going with you!

See you in worship.

Always Love, Rev Dave

PS: Here are resources that have been provided by Black Lives of UU if you’d like to go deeper yourself.

PSS: If you have sympathy for this way of putting Unitarian Universalism into action, but some of this happens to be too far outside your comfort zone, let me leave you with words from James Baldwin: “Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.”

PSSS: Join “Get Woke Stay Woke” conversations and actions toward racial justice, regularly scheduled following Fellowship on the Second Sundays of the month.

[published May 6, 2017]

Seeking Lead Religious Educator

Posted by on Mar 1, 2018 in News | Comments Off on Seeking Lead Religious Educator

Allegheny Unitarian Universalist Church on Pittsburgh’s North Side is looking for a collaborative, caring individual to oversee our faith development program for pre-K through 12-year olds, teaching 8-11-year olds twice monthly, and recruiting and supporting adult volunteers. Love and clearances are must-haves. If you or somebody you know would be an asset to this ministry to children, please apply!

About Allegheny Unitarian Universalist Church
We are a welcoming, urban congregation that puts Unitarian Universalism into action by celebrating life, nourishing the spirit and inspiring a commitment to justice. Founded in 1906. Located at W North Ave & Resaca on Pittsburgh’s North Side in the Mexican War Streets neighborhood.

Job Overview
Allegheny Unitarian Universalist Church is seeking a responsible, caring individual to oversee the pre-K and Elementary programs Sunday mornings from 10am until 12pm. This is a year-round, on-going staff position for 8 hours per week (2-3 hours per week) supervised by the Minister.

Religious Educator will be primarily responsible for:
•  Teach elementary classes twice monthly on Sunday morning
•  Contribute to at least quarterly all-ages services
•  Offer all-ages focus (story, lesson, song, etc.) at least monthly during Sunday worship
•  Coordinate, recruit, and support volunteers

•  Prior teaching experience, especially with behavioral needs children
•  Enthusiasm for and the ability to interact well with children
•  Caring and nurturing, and able to work collaboratively
•  Flexible and creative with children
•  Respect and teach the principles of Unitarian Universalism
•  Meet legally required clearances

How to Apply
Please send cover letter, resume, references and other relevant materials.

Email: re at

Postal mail: Allegheny UU Church, 1110 Resaca Pl, Pittsburgh, PA 15212

Wintry Weather Adisory: We’ll be OPEN!

Posted by on Jan 17, 2018 in News | Comments Off on Wintry Weather Adisory: We’ll be OPEN!

clearing sidewalks


With wintry weather here again a reminder that regardless of weather we gather each Sunday for a 10:30am worship service. That means if you can get here, we’ll be here! If the weather is severe enough that speakers, worship hosts, musicians, etc can’t make it, then we may all need to be flexible and the service format may be a little different. Maybe an intimate fireside gathering in the Emerson Room. But we’ll strive to get the sidewalks and steps cleared and to offer a meaningful spiritual experience for anyone who does attend. Your safety is the most important thing – evaluate the conditions and your trip to and from the North Side. We realize that bad roads, or cold temps, or a threatening forecast may keep you away. We will miss you but we’ll understand if you stay home. Hope to see you Sunday!

Share the Plate supports 2018 Summit Against Racism

Posted by on Jan 12, 2018 in News | Comments Off on Share the Plate supports 2018 Summit Against Racism

Summit Against Racism logoOur Share the Plate collection during November and December 2017 raised $686 for the January 20 2018 Summit Against Racism, which works to bridge Pittsburgh’s racial divide and move people to fight for racial justice. 2018 will be the 20th gathering, held annually following Jonny Gammage’s 1995 death during a traffic stop.

Allegheny’s Share the Plate program began in 2010 and directs half of our Sunday plate collection to justice partners doing important work in the communities of Pittsburgh’s North Side and beyond. To date we have collected and distributed $29,480 to 37  justice partners. If you know of an organization or project doing good works contact <sharetheplate at>.


Share the Plate supports Northside Common Ministries

Posted by on Jan 9, 2018 in News | Comments Off on Share the Plate supports Northside Common Ministries

Our Share the Plate collection during September and October 2017 raised $721 for Northside Common Ministries, which offers vital support and resources to neighbors in need including the Northside Community Food Pantry and the Pleasant Valley Men’s Shelter. In November, Allegheny UU Church was recognized as NCM’s “Congregation of the Year” for our efforts toward social justice, working with immigrant communities, food pantry collections, and Share the Plate collections.

Allegheny’s Share the Plate program began in 2010 and directs half of our Sunday plate collection to justice partners doing important work in the communities of Pittsburgh’s North Side and beyond. To date we have collected and distributed $28,794 to 36  justice partners. If you know of an organization or project doing good works contact <sharetheplate at>.

Find It Here

Posted by on Dec 11, 2017 in Feature Stories, News | Comments Off on Find It Here

Love. Spirit. Trust. Compassion. Forgiveness. Humanity. Oneness. Difference. Hope. Justice.

Find it here.


Toys for Tots Collection

Posted by on Nov 5, 2017 in Feature Stories, News | Comments Off on Toys for Tots Collection

Allegheny UU and other UUs of Greater Pittsburgh congregations will be collecting for the US Marine Corps Toys for Tots program again this year. Donated toys will go to Marine Corps collection points and will be distributed to children whose families might not otherwise be able to provide that joy on Christmas morning that comes when kids open gifts from family or ‘Santa’. It’s easy to participate! Bring new, unwrapped toys to church by December 10th. No food items are permitted, and no used toys. Realistic looking toy weapons will be rejected. Toys should be in their original packaging, and if possible remove price tags. Please show the spirit of our beloved community and generosity and help disadvantaged families to have a merry Holiday Season.


toys for tots logo


You can learn more at Toys for Tots.