Thursday, May 27, 2010


I've heard of churches in the South that oblige people to make a public confession of their graver sins to the whole congregation. I think sometimes there might be an advantage in making people aware of how worn and stale these old transgressions are. It might take some of the shine off them, for those who are tempted. But I have no evidence to suggest it has that effect.

Marilynne Robinson, from her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, Gilead


  1. The problem I see in a UU context is that "sin" is an elastic word. Outside of our denomination it isn't and getting people to talk about their sins outside might make sense since the definition of sin is fairly static. However within our walls, sin is a different word entirely, and there are people who will argue the word itself even though we have such a different meaning to begin with.

  2. To its detriment, the Unitarian Universalist church has never developed a concept of sin or transgression. In my experience, members of that faith tend to think they never do anything wrong, so there's no need to even bother with the idea, let alone the need to seek forgiveness.