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Unitarians Declare for Animals

8th March 2013

Centre Associate Fellow the Revd Feargus O’Connor has led the way in attempting to secure a declaration for animals at the Annual Meetings of the General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches at the University of Nottingham in April. The motion was unanimously agreed on Sunday 3rd February 2013 at Golders Green Unitarians and will now go forward for debate at the General Assembly Annual Meetings.

“This General Assembly of Unitarian and Free Christian Churches, inspired by the Universalist ethic of the Seventh Principle of the Unitarian Universalist Association, urging ‘respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are part’, and of our General Assembly Object proclaiming ‘respect for all creation’;

honours the dedicated work of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, the World Society for the Protection of Animals, the International Fund for Animal Welfare, Compassion in World Farming, the International Primate Protection League, the Dogs Trust, Cats Protection, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds and other campaigning animal welfare charities;

congratulates the Unitarian Universalist Animal Ministry, Quaker Concern for Animals, the Anglican Society for the Welfare of Animals, Catholic Concern for Animals and other religious animal welfare societies and Rev. Professor Andrew Linzey and the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics for their tireless promotion of the religious ethic of the Seventh Principle and its associated belief in the inherent worth and dignity of every living being;

urges fellow Unitarians and all people of goodwill to honour the spirit of the UUA Seventh Principle and its ethic of compassion and mercy to our sentient fellow creatures sharing this planet with us by acting effectively to protect and save billions of animal lives.”

Centre Director Professor Andrew Linzey commented: “The churches generally have a poor record on animal protection, so it is a delight to hear of this latest resolution. Among religious bodies Unitarians have been in the forefront of concern for animals and we pay tribute to their progressive stand.”

More information about Unitarian Universalist Animal Ministry can be found here.