Guides outline political activity rules for religious organizations

The Pew Forum has issued its 2012 Guide to IRS Rules on Political Activity by Religious Organizations.  The Unitarian Universalist Association’s own guide, The Real Rules, has additional information. 

John Hurley, the UUA’s director of Communications, notes, “Over the years I’ve seen far more of our congregations shy away from political activity due to misunderstanding what is acceptable than to overstep the limits. The IRS regulations for political activity by non-profits afford a great deal of latitude for congregations: voter registration drives, candidate forums, and advocacy for or against ballot amendments are all acceptable practices. Engagement in the political process is an excellent way for our congregations to put our faith into action.”

Enter an election-themed video contest

The UUA’s Standing on the Side of Love website is seeking short, compelling, election-related videos. For example, videos might focus on voter registration, a moral budget, reproductive justice, or marriage equality. The prize for the best video is $1,000. The top five will receive $100 worth of Standing on the Side of Love gear.

The videos should be no more than four minutes long and should be based on UU values and a vision of the future. They should not endorse a particular candidate or political party. They should also not use copyright-protected images or music.

The deadline for submissions is September 23. More information is available here.

May/June 2010 congregation-focused articles from UU World

InterConnections is not the only source of useful information for lay leaders. Check out uuworld.org for articles about UUA changes and congregational activities. Sign up for a weekly email about new articles on uuworld.org.

  • UUA moves pension fund The UUA decided to move its pension funds from Fidelity Investments to TIAA-CREF after Fidelity refuses to divest from companies doing business in the Sudan (thus contributing to the genocide there). The change will have no effect on congregational pension plans. 5.24.10
  • UUA restructures staff Reduced funding inspires more effective ways of doing ministry, including focusing social justice work at the congregational level. 5.17.10
  • UUA moving toward changes See what changes the UUA has in mind for the election of its president and moderator, reducing the size of the UUA board, and altering General Assembly. 5.15.10
  • Read UU World’s comprehensive coverage of General Assembly 2010, June 23–27, on UU World’s GA blog and at uuworld.org.