UUFSMA: “Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité”

  • UUFSMA-2

Event Category: Religous/Spiritual

  • UU Service

    Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité

    Rev. Tom Rosiello

    10:30 a.m., July 14, 2019

    The Rev. Tom Rosiello, Affiliate Minister for the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of San Miguel de Allende, explores the tension between freedom and equality at this week’s Fellowship service.

    On this Sunday the French celebrate Bastille Day, which marked the turning point in the revolution that ended autocratic rule in their country. Two weeks ago the United States celebrated the 4thof July, and in September Mexicans celebrate their Independence Day. All of these holidays recognize the struggle for freedom, equality, and the establishment of democratic rule. These events altered the course of human history and established new ideas that are the hallmark of Liberal Enlightenment thinking.

    The French revolution gave rise to the tripartite motto of France: Liberté, Equlité, Fraturnité (Liberty, Equality, Fraternity). During his recent visit to France, Rev. Rosiello encountered these words engraved above the doors of many public buildings and reflected upon them as he traveled throughout the country. In his sermon, Rev. Rosiello shares his understanding of what these words really mean and how we measure up today to the standards they set. What has become clear over the past 200 plus years, however, is that these ideas are more easily proclaimed than accomplished.

    “The tension between freedom and equality is essentially the core of the debate between liberals (who emphasize equality over freedom) and conservatives (who emphasize freedom over equality). We know that both rights are important but how do we balance them?” Maybe, he suggests, the answer lies in the third part of the French motto. Fraternité is not a right as are the other two, but what might be described as a moral obligation. What does that moral obligation look like, and how might it shape our view of the rights of freedom and equality?

    Today we are witnessing a rise of nationalism and racism around the world that devalues and demonizes the other. We see elected officials shamelessly creating schemes to suppress the vote of minority groups, increasing episodes of hate speech and crimes, and the loss of some hard-won rights for the LGBTQ community. The enlightenment ideals of liberty, equality, and democracy are in trouble. Rev. Rosiello looks at what a liberal faith teaches us about freedom, equality, and the democratic process.

    The music for the service includes themes of freedom and liberty provided by pianist Malcolm Halliday and vocalist Paola Juarez. Included among them is the Mercedes Sosa song, “La Tiempo de Libertas.”

    For more information about the UUFSMA, including our Social Action outreach, weekly discussion groups, social activities, and Care Team, join us any Sunday at 10:30 a.m. at the Hotel La Aldea or visit our website at uufsma.org. Our Sunday morning Children’s Religious Education program is on summer break until September.

    Our fellowship was born in 1987 when a small group of expatriate religious liberals came together to meet as Unitarian Universalists in San Miguel de Allende. The fellowship has been active and thriving ever since. Every UU church has it’s own flavor, and we are no exception. We are a combination of expats and visitors, each actively engaged and contributing to this wonderful Mexican community we love. Because there is a coming, going, and returning aspect, our spiritual community is extremely fluid.  There is a magic in San Miguel which draws us in and binds us together—both as members of the church and of the larger community. Our programming is led by visiting ministers, community leaders, and church members, so the variety is lively. We have opportunities to meet as UU’s each week at discussion groups, breakfasts, luncheons, and in various other ways. Depending on the season, attendance fluctuates between 40 and 140. Our primary focus is on funding social action within the surrounding community. We love good music, good discussion, good food, and having visitors. We invite you to join us any Sunday morning.


    Members regularly post updates and information on this site. We also post meeting minutes and announcements there.

    To join our Yahoo group site click on this link:


    Click on “membership”and follow the directions.

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    We encourage you to use this site to communicate with other local UUs.


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