Wednesday, September 24, 2014


For Immediate Release



Reverend James C. (Jay) Leach

Senior Minister, Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte



CHARLOTTE, NC: Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, President of the North Carolina NAACP, will be a guest speaker at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte on Sunday, September 28. He will address the congregation in their regular 9:15 a.m. and11:15 a.m. services and will speak at a 5 p.m. gathering that is open to the public. 

Rev. Dr. Barber, recently named the recipient of this year's Fellowship of Reconciliation Martin Luther King Jr. Award, is the architect behind the Forward Together/Moral Monday effort. This broad-based coalition effort has included the massive Historic Thousands on Jones Street marches begun five years ago. It has been visible in its challenge to extremist policies in North Carolina and is now being emulated in an increasing number of states throughout the country.


Unitarian Universalists have been active participants in the Moral Monday effort. A reported 1,500 Unitarian Universalists from around the U.S. participated in this past February's HKonJ rally. Rev. Jay Leach, minister of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte, has been a regular speaker and very involved in the effort locally and in Raleigh. He was among those arrested in our state's General Assembly for exercising his rights and has spoken throughout the community about his involvement. Said Leach: "We've been honored to join with many across lines of race, religion, and political affiliation to speak for a more just and equitable vision for our state. Now, we are especially honored to host my friend and colleague, Dr. Barber, acclaimed by many as the leading civil rights voice in our nation."


Rev. Leach and the Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte are inviting all Moral Monday participants in the Charlotte area to the afternoon gathering, where Rev. Dr. Barber will speak about the successes of the Moral Monday efforts to date and about plans for the movement going forward.


The afternoon gathering, like the morning services, will include the collection of financial support for the efforts of the NAACP both locally under the leadership of Rev. Kojo Nantambu and statewide under Barber's leadership. 


The Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte is the oldest and largest Unitarian Universalist congregation in North Carolina. It is a part of the progressive Unitarian Universalist Association headquartered in Boston. The congregation is committed to "working with others to overcome the barriers that divide the human family." Its Mission invites participants to "discover deeper spiritual meaning" and offers extensive programming for children, youth, and adults. Leach is in his twelfth year as the minister of the congregation.


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