Julia Hamilton, Director of the UU Legislative Ministry of N.J., described the work her organization is doing on the state level to address equal justice issues. UULMNJ is a grass roots organization comprising 12-15 action networks statewide.
Hamilton, a recent graduate of the Harvard Divinity School is a lifelong UU and a soon-to-be ordained minister, having served her internship at the Summit Congregation.
The purpose of the Legislative Ministry is to educate individual congregations at the agreed-upon issues and how to communicate their interest to legislators. The three issues being addressed today are environmental problems, economic justice (focusing on affordable housing) and health care.
Along with Lutheran Social Justice groups and Catholic Charities, UULMNJ works to bring their respective faiths (even if at times at variance with each other) into the public arena.
Marriage equality, recently under consideration in N.J., is one of the least controversial issues for UU's today, and Hamilton urged today's attendees to write letters to representatives, perhaps attend sessions of the Legislature in Trenton and to keep abreast of the progress of this issue which now will probably go to the courts, having failed to be considered in the current legislative session.
During the dialog, one of the most crucial issues to come up was how to keep young people active in UU congregations. Several suggestions from Hamilton were to ask them to participate, involve them in Sunday services and even to send them care packages when they leave for college.