First Unitarian Church of Philadelphia ~ Welcome home!

Our Mission

Called by our history and Unitarian Universalist values, First Unitarian Church is an inclusive community, rooted in its urban home, reaching to build acceptance, creating an environment that encourages religious growth and spiritual strength, and fostering justice and peace here and in the wider world.

Our Family

  • Shared Responsibility: We take shared responsibility to cultivate a culture of abundance through the sharing of our time, talent, and treasure.

  • Nurturing Spiritual Community: We cultivate and nurture a welcoming spiritual community that enriches, inspires, and encourages moral and spiritual growth across the lifespan.
  • Transparency: We apply transparency in our governance and ministry in order to build trust and to preserve the integrity of our democratic process.

Our Home

  • Preservation: We commit to preserve and enhance our architecturally significant building while creating a modern, safe, and accessible space.

Our World

  • Social Responsibility: Inspired by the historic and contemporary activists of First Unitarian Church, we work towards a more just, peaceful, compassionate, and equitable congregation, urban community, and world.
  • Sustainability: We care for and seek sustainability in our relationship with the earth, its vital ecosystems, and the human and non-human animals who inhabit it.


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The First Unitarian Church uses a modified version of Policy Governance to manage the congregational affairs. We develop a number of programmatic Means to achieve the Ends listed above.

The term Ends refers to the effects we seek to have on the world outside ourselves. Our work will cause something to be different for someone at some cost. Our Ends statements are designed to embrace three parts:

  • The impact, difference, change, benefit or outcome to be obtained in the lives of the populations we serve, often referring to results. This answers the question: what benefit?
  • The identity, description, or characteristics of those who receive the results, referred to as recipients, answers the questions: who benefits?
  • And the monetary expense, relative worth, or relative priority of a result or set of results, or the comparative priority of certain recipients rather than others getting the results, referred to the costs, answer the question: at what cost?

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