Dear U*U Friends around the Globe,
My very first impressions about the international Unitarian Universalist community reminded me of what we in Transylvania consider a sacred notion: family. When I think back of the first visits paid by American, Canadian, British, German and other Unitarians in Transylvania in the early 1990s, I remember the joy of our people when meeting sisters and brothers in the faith for the first time in their lives.
A precious and transformative feeling stayed with us after those first encounters: that we are not alone, that we too have sisters and brothers in the Unitarian faith who are very different from us in many ways, but who recognize us, acknowledge us, and assume responsibility for our well being – so that we can live out again the full potential of our faith.
It was also due to this recognition, this assumed responsibility and this help coming from our international community, that our Unitarian church in Transylvania, and now Hungary too, transformed itself into a stronger community with a more focused service and a more self-conscious identity.
20th century Hungarian poet Attila Jozsef wrote, In vain you bathe your face in yourself, you can only truly wash it in others. The international community provided us with the willingness and even the joy of this other, sister and brother, in whose eyes, and souls, and care, and commitments, we washed off our face, to reveal our true identity.
And two decades after being together in this process of mutual transformation, we now with gratefulness and pride look in the eyes of our sisters and brothers, as in a mirror: and what we see there today, the old-and-new Transylvanian Unitarian face, is a transformed one into better: it is younger, and prouder, more energetic, more awaken, more aware of its own potential.
Dear friends! I write you now not only as a Transylvanian, but also in my capacity as president of the ICUU, our international community whose mission is to foster the capacity of the Unitarian Universalist communities, and their people, and to increase their potential for a better service at their homes.
I assumed this responsibility for ICUU because I believe in this mission. I know what ICUU can do for Unitarian Universalism in the world because I experienced the many things it did for us back home in Transylvania. I agreed to do this work also because I see the many assets that we, the member groups have, to be shared with one another in a one-to-one relationship, and to be enriched by each other’s gifts.
There are many, many more Unitarians and Universalists out there in the world, individuals and groups who are in a far bigger necessity, and need a far bigger help than most of us do at home.
Unitarians in Transylvania and Hungary are joining the other ICUU member groups in almost 30 different countries on 5 continents, but apparently our united efforts, as they are today, are not yet enough: the needs are beyond our current tools.
I therefore invite you, individuals who care to look beyond the limits of the home needs, to join our vision, our resources and our love in order to benefit the still new, and young, and needy members of our family.
We say at home that one gets to choose the friends only, not the family too. Family comes with who you are, as they belong not to a hobby of yours, or your leisure time, but to your core being.
Let us be who we are also by truly joining our lives with those who come with it! Who may be very different from us, but who also remind us of some of our own core values! May God bless the union of our Unitarian Universalist family, and bless the bonds that we make in it, to transform ourselves, and each other, into the best who we can become!
Gyero David, ICUU president
September 15, 2015