Welcome to the Thomas Jefferson Memorial Church – Unitarian Universalist.
Unitarian Universalism is often referred to as a “free church” because people are free – and encouraged – to engage in their own search for truth and meaning without the imposition of creed or dogma. Here you will find a community that is serious about its spiritual seeking, and encouraging of yours. We see life itself as the greatest of scriptures, and seek to apply its teachings to the full living of our lives and the healing of the world.
Does this intrigue you? Excite you? Come. Add your gifts to those already here. Your presence will make this community richer still. Throughout this website you will find information about the many and varied activities and groups which make up living reality of this faith community, and you are welcome to engage in ways that make sense to you. As we say at the beginning of our Sunday service each week, “You have a place here. All are welcome here.”
Sunday morning Service and Religious Education times
What We Stand For
Our purpose is not to tell you who to be or what to believe, but to help each of us to find greater meaning in our lives. We have no creeds. We believe in the intrinsic worth of all people and in life’s creative power. We offer a community of faith that reveres the interconnected web of all life, and that calls on us to work to make a difference in the world.
We are a church of the liberal religious tradition and heritage, one with ancient and deep roots. We are a diverse community which encourages spiritual growth and the practice of our beliefs through active involvement in the church and in the world. We are a religious community embracing a common faith expressed by our commitment to the UU Principles and Purposes.
A word about our name. TJMC was formed in the 1950s and built intentionally to be a memorial to Thomas Jefferson – author of both the Virginia Statute of Religious Freedom and the Declaration of Independence, two documents that still today are among the most powerful articulations of freedom. And while he never formally joined a Unitarian church, in several places he did write about his respect for our tradition, even asserting in a personal letter his belief that, “[Unitarianism] will long be the religion of the majority from north to south, I have no doubt.”
At the same time, Jefferson’s life contradicted his rhetoric regarding freedom in that he considered roughly 160 women, children, and men to be his “property.” This, too, is one of Jefferson’s legacies and as a liberal religious community named after him we take seriously our responsibility to address the modern fruit of slavery and work to address issues of racism in our own lives, in our congregation, and in the Charlottesville area and the wider world around us.
Our religious community thrives on diversity.
Many of our members were raised in other religious traditions and bring with them many spiritual perspectives. We come from Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, humanist, scientific, pagan, earth-centered, agnostic and other backgrounds, and we incorporate these traditions into our services. We are accepting of all religions and believe that creation is too mystical to be reduced to any “one truth.”
You are Welcome.
Here we are a Welcoming Congregation promoting full participation in church activities by all persons of whatever race, color, creed, gender, ability and/or disability, affectional or sexual orientation, age, economic status, or origin. We hope that your visit here will provide you with a greater sense of unity within yourself, with the people around you, and with the world outside these walls.
Our Mission Statement
Thomas Jefferson Memorial Church – Unitarian Universalist is a church of the liberal tradition rooted in the heritage of Unitarian Universalism and dedicated to the belief that in every individual there are extraordinary possibilities.
WE ARE committed to the individual and collective pursuit of spiritual growth, social justice, and life-long religious education and understanding.
WE FOSTER an open and free community in which we share our gifts, care for one another, and honor our differences.
WE SEEK to have a lasting influence on local, national and global programs that promote equity and end oppression.
Our Covenant with one another
In order to create the beloved community we all desire for ourselves, we, the Congregation of Thomas Jefferson Memorial Church Unitarian Universalist covenant to:
- Communicate with compassion and respect, especially when we disagree,
- Celebrate diversity and nurture our inclusivity,
- Embrace one another spiritually and emotionally,
- Promote social justice within our congregation and the larger community,
- Generously support the ministries of the church with time, money and enthusiasm, and
- When we have fallen short, lovingly call each other back into covenant.