Since 2010, I have had the incredible privilege and opportunity to be a leader in a grassroots organization striving to unite non-theistic groups across the state of Utah. With the additional goal of providing a unified website and community resources to freethinking Utahans - so that they know they are not alone - The Utah Coalition of Reason has successfully reached out to over 13 community groups, and to thousands of Utahans at Street Fairs, Festivals, Tabling Events, and via a prominent Billboard and News campaign.
I would like to open this new site by announcing my official resignation from the Board of the Utah Coalition of Reason. I am passing on the torch to a few of my fantastic, well-trusted co-founders and fellow leaders in the secular community of Utah, Jason Cooperrider, Evelin Damian, and Zachary Stevenson. Their unending determination and energy has already brought about the new Think! Utah newsletter, and I am very pleased to know that the future work of the Coalition will be in their excellent and competent hands.
I have been incredibly honored these past two years to meet and work with leaders from the Atheists of Utah, the Humanists of Utah, SHIFT - Secular Humanism, Inquiry, and Freethought, and the many others who have come together to form this Coalition of Reason. You are all doing inspiring work! Please keep it up, and continue to build the mutual support among your organizations. The e-mails we receive regularly from Utahans all over the state speak volumes to the hard work and dedication you have put toward your group events and efforts. Thank you for all that you have done and continue to do! I look forward greatly to being continually involved in your annual Darwin Day celebrations, quarterly Solstice & Equinox parties, weekly coffee nights & social gatherings, summer picnics, highway cleanups, and more.
Relinquishing my active involvement on the Board of the Utah Coalition of Reason comes about at a time of change and progress in my own life, and I would like to take a short moment to explain why I have decided now to resign, and to begin this new site - Minister Elaine. You see, the Utah Coalition of Reason, I believe, will be best run by secular Utahans who have no personal ties to any religious communities. At the time that I co-founded SHIFT in 2009, and began working to build this Coalition in 2010, I could count myself among those secular, non-religious Utahans.
However, in May 2010 I did officially join the liberal religious community of First Unitarian Church of Salt Lake City. And, in May 2011, I completed the application process and became certified by the Humanist Society to be a Humanist Minister - enabling me to officiate at wedding ceremonies, memorial services, child welcoming celebrations, and other life-passage events.
While my own journey as a Humanist has led me to choose to be an active member of a religious community, and to have a deep desire to provide Ministerial Services to Humanists and inter-religious individuals and families, I do not believe that every person should or will follow a similar path! As the number of groups in the Coalition of Reason makes apparent, there are many, many non-religious Atheists and Humanists in our beautiful state of Utah, and I believe that while every human being - religious and non-religious - deserves to have access to Humanistic "ministerial" services, this group of Reason and Freethought rightly ought to be led by completely secular, non-theistic free-thinkers.
And so it is with gratitude that I say goodbye to this chapter of leadership I have been so pleased to be involved with these past few years. Thank you all, more than I can say, for having the audacity to hope that this state can and will embrace us for being the good godless heathens and happy humanists we are!
Please feel welcome to follow this new site, should you find yourself interested in the (relatively) Religious Humanistic musings of a new, young, female, lesbian Minister in Utah. Much Love!