This I Believe - Some Words of Others

If you’re in need of inspiration, you need look no further than your fellow UU’s.

In their words you will find all the wonder and joy of being alive.

Jennifer Thimesh
I believe that I thrive in seeking a personal and meaningful truth. This journey begins by searching within myself for peace and by showing kindness, love, and a giving (and forgiving) spirit to those around me.

John Myers
I believe I am driven, and limited by, the human condition and human evolution. I’m driven to reproduce, protect, and live to the fullest, my genetic message.  These needs are represented for me and mine by Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.

As an individual in the enormous knowable and unknowable universe, I covenant to keep an open and active mind and strive for deep awareness of what resonates with my maturing inner being to:

• seek life affirming situations and relationships;
• accept my efforts as enough;
• identify and make habits of my best;
• listen and speak from my heart and
• celebrate life.

Ruth Kelly Trudeau
I have long had this saying hung in my bathroom and I look at each day as I brush my teeth.  My mother wrote it on a piece of parchment-like paper as an exercise in calligraphy.  I have seen it attributed to Anonymous and to William Penn, but she wrote it from memory.  We heard it every Sunday from Rev. Frank Schulman at Emerson let's talkUnitarian Church in Houston.

“I shall pass through this world but once.
Any good thing, therefore, that I can do,
Any kindness that I can show
To any human being
Let me do it now
For I shall not pass this way again.”

I believe in this.

Ron Suiter
Of this I am convinced:

That all knowledge is provisional, we cannot know anything for certain.

That although we cannot know anything for certain, we must act on what we can know, and that reproducible and recurring results provide sufficient basis for action.

That true courage, character and leadership lies not in acting out of certainty and conviction, but in being willing to act after rational analysis in spite of uncertainty.

That the scientific method is the only rational way to obtain knowledge that can be relied upon in making serious decisions affecting ourselves and other beings.

That human development, improvement and evolution has been moving away from superstition, ignorance, fear and irrational spirituality toward the use of reason and science to answer questions about the unknown; away from the selfishness and exclusion of tribalism toward an understanding that we are all one tribe; away from the “me centered” universe toward an understanding that the Earth itself is simply a pale blue dot hardly noticeable from any significant distance.

That the only meaning that exists in life is the meaning we give it by what we do and how we treat other living beings.

That sincerity is not a justification for doing evil.

That there is no one more dangerous than someone who is convinced he is right.

Gary Paramore
It is said that “every man is my master, in that I may learn from him.” So hearken unto the words of thy brethren and sisetern, and be enlightened.

I believe that God, like the rest of us, is a work in progress.

We participate in the creation of God as we make choices to actualize the possibilities of good in the world.

Every time we:
• appreciate beauty,
• deepen our understanding,
• share our bounty,
• develop a loving relationship,
• take care of the earth, or
• work for justice

we are co-creators of meaning and shapers of God.

I want to live my life paying attention to and prioritizing those activities - to do my little bit towards establishing the kingdom of God on earth.

David Phillips
One of the main UU issues is that its members must respect "many beliefs." However, there is one thing that is not as apparent to most of us, and even less to those of other churches. In order to respect other beliefs that are different from yours, it is absolutely necessary that you accept that they are just as likely to be as correct or more than yours. In order to accept this, your attitude of your beliefs must be humble. In order to gain humility, human beings must accept that almost all of their faiths and beliefs are opinions, not facts.

Pam Schuman
Deity: Life Force/Nature, intelligent, benevolent, in all things. Origin/functioning of Universe part of design, known dimly to us through innate curiosity and scientific exploration, ever-unfolding.

Life: Joy from “god”-given senses and intellect, relationships; pain from suffering, not from supernatural punishment or incarnate evil, but from neutral sources (accidents, diseases, natural disasters) or human instigation (personal desires not restrained before harm to self or others occurs). Learn from pain to find life-affirming lessons for self/others.

Death: Consciousness as we know it ceases, “re-joins” Deity in ways not readily understandable (spirit/soul). No hell, but gentle acceptance in rejoining.

“Do unto others…” “Choose life.”

Doug Arvanites
I am blessed to have been born into this place and time. I have the ability to accomplish things that many in the world cannot, due to their circumstances. I honor these advantages by seeking to make the world a better place, every day, in each relationship. In doing this, I help to add positive energy to the life-force that guides our planet and our universe. This, in turn, helps to make the world a better place for my children (and all children) to live, grow and propagate.

Beth Bargar
I believe in God, humankind, and a sense of mystery. I feel a spiritual presence that I interpret as God when I hear uplifting music, observe the wonders of nature, and experience the circle of life with family and friends. I believe in the potential for all people to be “good” if they are brought up with love and treated with respect. I enjoy the mysteries of life and accept that some things cannot be explained. I am thankful for a religion that encourages me to explore and refine my beliefs, and accepts diversity as an asset.

Nathan Smernoff
I think all pets should be treated the same as humans because if we were nice to pets they would be nice to us. Lions eat you because you are not nice to them, you hunt them. Ducks are nice sometimes. If you kick them you get bit in the butt. That's how life works. Everything has a reason. You scrape your knee for a reason. Everything happens for a reason. On God... When someone dies, God gives them a new body.

Lynn Hess
I believe (in fact, I know) that I don’t have it all figured out, and never will – but that I will try to figure it all out anyway, because it is in the trying that I become who I really am.

I believe the main obligation I have during the limited time I have on this Earth is to do my best to “be the light I wish to see in the world.”

I believe that we each have our own unique way of being, and that we are all perfect, and perfectly acceptable, just the way we are.

I believe everything is exactly as it should be, and that all things will work out – that there is no other alternative.

I believe love is the answer to each and every question – no exceptions!

Marty Robinson
As I view the beauty of the world around me, as I marvel at the multitude of living things, I cannot help but believe in a Creative Force. This Spirit is exemplified in the interdependence of all matter. There is a spark of the divine in all of us. What we do to the earth, what we do to animals, what we do to other humans - all of our actions affect creation as a whole. The way in which we exercise that spirit of Love will be the true measure of our legacy.

Bob Ludwig
I believe that we walk alone together

That I am never closer to the ALL than when I am small

That I have been assisted all along
 by personalities I perceive only dimly, usually

That I have been blessed with flashes of seeing
 and the calm assurance of their presence

That I continue to be born in pain
 and unfold with a dancing joy

That each of our losses diminishes me

That healing is joyful
 and life is intimately musical

Love, light, & laughter

Horizon UU History

Horizon History

In 1985, the Metroplex area was expanding dramatically toward Lewisville and other cities north of Dallas. That year the Rev. John Buehrens of First Unitarian Church of Dallas urged the creation of a UU congregation in Northwest Dallas County because of the area’s growth. Martha Robinson had just finished a term as president of First Church and she agreed to take a new congregation training and spearhead the effort.

Notices were sent out of the new congregation and in September of 1986 fifteen people from First Church and Dallas North (Plano area) gathered for their first regular meeting. Soon after they began meeting in a small shopping center in Farmers Branch, Texas, since no rental quarters could be found further north. Services were held regularly during the next year with lay leadership and a strong religious education program for the children.

Rev. Dennis Hamilton Called as Minister

By 1987 the group had grown to 34 adults and in March of that year was officially chartered by the UUA. An application was made with the UUA for the services of an extension minister to begin in the fall of l987. Thanks to the generous assistance of Hardy and Betty Sanders of First Church, the Rev. Dennis Hamilton, a graduate of Starr King School for the Ministry began work as Horizon's extension minister in September that year. As soon as Rev. Hamilton arrived and his sermon topics were announced in the suburban newspapers, the congregation began to grow. Rev. Hamilton was called as the regular minister in 1989.

Expansion Leads to New Location

Although the shopping center space was increased three times during Horizon’s 9-year stay, it was soon evident that the congregation should consider looking for land further north. A site was found in an area just opening up for development in northern Carrollton, to be on Hebron Parkway when that route would be completed. Cattle were grazing the land and stakes indicated the future roadway when the site committee made its first visit. An architect was selected and plans were drawn up. Hebron Parkway opened in February 1995, and Horizon moved into its permanent home on Thanksgiving weekend of the same year. Six acres of land had been purchased, yet only two acres were being utilized, anticipating future growth.

As soon as the doors opened, the congregation began to expand. In the first year at the new location, the membership grew by 80 people, and it was evident that the church school rooms would soon be crowded. The congregation moved to two services in the fall of l996, and additional parking was added early in 1998 to accommodate the increased membership. That same year a portable building was installed to help with the increased church school attendance.

Horizon Becomes a “Teaching Church”

In 1997, Horizon became a "teaching church" with the Unitarian Universalist Association with the arrival of the first intern minister in the fall. An intern minister is a student in a graduate theological school who is supervised by an established minister and learns about the workings of the church while adding depth to the ministry of the church. Tom Schade was the first intern in 1997, and since then Horizon has mentored Rev. Fran Dew, Rev. Francesca Hughes, Rev. Thom Belote, Rev. Naomi King, Rev. Philip Douglas, Andrew Weber, and Rev. Lora Brandis. Our intern minister for 2010-2011 is Megan Dalby.

In August of 2000 Horizon called a second minister, Rev. Barbara Morgan, to help in the religious education program and in the development of small groups within the adult congregation. After making a wonderful contribution to these programs, Rev. Morgan retired.

Horizon has always been committed to social service and social action in the community. In our twenty year history Horizon brought the CROP Walk to the community, has had regular blood drives for fifteen years, has sponsored and participated in annual marches for human rights, peace, GBLT rights, and others, helped to bring MLK celebrations to the community, helped start a school age parent program at Mary Grimes School, has had heavy involvement in and support for Metrocrest Social Services, brought a Family Place outreach center to Carrollton, sponsored a church in Romania, had food drives, repaired seniors houses, and raised emergency support for disaster relief to name a few of the examples of how we live our faith. We recently reaffirmed our commitment to social action in an all church survey.

The following year, Horizon went through an evaluation process to ascertain in what direction the congregation wished to grow. The result has been a dramatic increase in the social outreach programming at Horizon into the surrounding communities. Also in 2003 the church board established an 18-month trial program for a Committee on Ministry. This group was charged with the task of viewing all of the various committees and groups within Horizon to ascertain the effectiveness of the complete ministry of everyone within the congregation. In 2007, the congregation voted to make this committee a permanent fixture of the church.

UUA Continues Growth in the Area

A special NTAUUS task force including Rev. Hamilton and Rev. Laurel Hallman of First Unitarian, Dallas established a new congregation within the Metroplex as the UUA began to explore a new approach to establishing UU societies based upon the mega-church concept, which had been used by other denominations. Pathways Church, a UU congregation, began in Southlake, Texas, in the fall of 2004 after a year of preparation. It is now an established congregation slowly growing its membership.

Look for our New Horizon

By 2004 Horizon had begun the next step in its expansion by planning for new construction as soon as economically feasible. The congregation identified the addition of more space in the foyer area, expanded classrooms and a meditation/memorial garden as priorities. Numerous trees and plants were also added to our campus in 2004.

In 2005 the congregation voted to approve a resolution supporting same-sex marriages, "Standing on the Side of Love," and in 2007 Horizon became an official UU Welcoming Church – a church that is institutionally welcoming to the GLBT community (gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender.)

In 2007 Horizon Unitarian Universalist Church celebrated its 20th anniversary! The congregation recognized our founding members and benefactors, and expressed gratitude for their pioneer spirit in establishing a UU church in the northwestern suburbs of Dallas.

In May 2010, Horizon broke ground on our much anticipated expansion. The project includes upgrades to the sanctuary, the addition of a fellowship hall, remodeling of the kitchen and administrative suite, and construction of a new library, religious education classroom and religious education office. The first phase of the memorial garden is also underway on the west side of the building.

What We Believe

What We Believe

 

Regardless of your gender or sexual orientation, you are welcome here.  You may be young or old, rich or poor, and you are welcome here.  Whether you walked in with assistance or have special needs, you are welcome here.  And regardless of your religious, ethnic or racial origins, you are welcome here.

We do not ask what you believe nor expect you to believe as we do.  Rather our community encourages its members to pursue the deepening of their own religious conviction.  This church is united not by creed, but by a common purpose to embrace the compassionate wisdom of all ages and cultures in order to realize a community of love, peace and justice for all.

We, the member congregations of the Unitarian Universalist Association, covenant to affirm and promote:

  • The inherent worth and dignity of every person
  • Justice, equity and compassion in human relations
  • Acceptance of one another and encouragement of spiritual growth in our congregations
  • A free and responsible search for truth and meaning
  • The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and society at large
  • The goal of world community with peace, liberty and justice for all
  • Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.

Contact Info

Horizon Unitarian Universalist Church
1641 W. Hebron Parkway
Carrollton, Texas 75010
(972) 492-4940

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