Unitarian Universalism includes aspects of many of the world’s religions. Holidays from various religions are celebrated together in Unitarian Universalist (UU) congregations. In addition to traditional religious holidays, many UU congregations also honor secular holidays including Earth Day, Martin Luther King, Jr. Sunday, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, Memorial Day, Labor Day, and Thanksgiving. While these are not traditionally spiritual holidays, Unitarian Universalism finds spiritual meaning and affinity with our Principles in the ideas behind these and other secular holidays.
Rather than holding Christian-style baptism ceremonies, most Unitarian Universalist congregations have child dedication services for infants, young adopted children, or young children whose families have recently joined the congregation.
The parents bring the child to the front of the sanctuary at a designated time in a regular Sunday worship service, and the minister presides over the ceremony. The dedication ceremony is generally a celebration of the blessing of new life, an expression of the parents’ hopes for their child, and a call to the parents and the congregation’s members to lead and nurture the child’s spiritual life as it grows.
Adults are not required to be or become baptized when joining the Unitarian Universalist faith.
There is no one standard Unitarian Universalist wedding service. Each service is developed by the couple and the presiding minister to best reflect the couple’s beliefs, hopes, and relationship.
Memorial Services for loved ones who have passed on are very personal, private occasions. Because of this, each Unitarian Universalist memorial service and funeral is developed by the family of the deceased and the presiding minister to specially honor the memory of that individual. Frequently, although not always, the service includes a time for those present to remember the deceased with a story or anecdote. There is usually hymn singing and instrumental music as well.