Religions and Spirituality

Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Sussex County Celebrates 50 Years

 Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Hall located at One West Nelson Street in Newton.

NEWTON, NJ - The Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Sussex County announced that it will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Fellowship on Sunday, September 28, beginning at noon.  The celebration, to be held at the Fellowship Hall, located at 1 West Nelson Street in Newton, will include a potluck luncheon, music, and conversation with members and friends. 

The Fellowship meets every Sunday at 10:30 a.m. from September to June.  Their part-time minister, Rev. Mary Tiebout presents programs twice a month alternating with guest speakers covering a wide variety of topics.  In addition to the adult service, a vibrant Religious Education program is provided for the children.

The white frame building housing the Fellowship holds a prominent position in the history of Sussex County.  At one point, it was a Grange Hall, and it is even believed to have had connections with the Ku Klux Klan in the 1920s. 

Sign Up for E-News

Unitarianism developed in Europe at the time of the Protestant Reformation.  Early Unitarians maintained that the unity of God should not be divided into the trinity of Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  Beyond that, the first Unitarians tended to hold fairly traditional Christian beliefs.

In the United States, Unitarianism first took hold in New England in the early 1800s, principally among liberal Congregationalists, as a reaction against the strict Calvinism of the time.  Ralph Waldo Emerson, humanitarians Florence Nightingale and Clara Barton, and presidential candidate Adlai Stevenson were all Unitarians.  There were many Unitarians on the forefront of the anti-slavery movement.

In the early 1800s another religion, called Universalism, also challenged the Calvinist emphasis on a grim and punishing God.  Universalists believed, and many still do, that God is a loving creator who forgives the sins of all.  Northern Baptists were especially drawn to Universalism.

In the 20th century, Unitarianism and Universalism moved further away from traditionalism, rejecting doctrine and dogma, concluding that the individual must make free and personal choices about the meaning of existence.

In 1961, the Unitarians and Universalists officially merged into the Unitarian Universalist Association, based then as now in Boston.  Soon afterward in October 1964, a small band of Sussex County residents who had been attending the 300 member Morristown Unitarian Fellowship decided to found a separate group.  The group met in rented quarters until 1978, when they were able to purchase the West Nelson Street building.

The present day 65 member congregation focuses on the spiritual needs of their membership as well as the needs of the surrounding community, the county and the state.  Members serve the community through groups such as Manna House, Family Promise, People Help, National Alliance for Mental Illness and Sierra Club among others.  Unitarian Universalists remain dedicated to the goal of world community with peace, liberty and justice for all.

 For more information about UUFSC visit their website at, see them on Facebook, or call 973 579 7210.  Visitors are always welcome to services.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Sparta Police: Drug Charges for Sparta Woman After Traffic Stop

April 24, 2018

SPARTA, NJ – A Sparta woman is facing drug charges after a traffic stop on Route 15.  On April 21 around 11:10 a.m. Sparta Cpl. Joe Antonello stopped Marina Scheer, 20, because the license plate on her green Toyota was bent making it impossible to read, according to police.

When Antonello spoke with Scheer he smelled marijuana in the car.  Scheer said there had been a passenger ...

Plane Crashes into Lake Aeroflex in Sussex County Park

NEWTON, NJ—A one-manned plane crashed into Lake Aeroflex in Kittatinny Valley State Park around 11:30 this morning.

“I heard the plane cut out, then I saw it turn left and flatten out, and then it landed in the lake,” passerby Justin Leyman said. “It took the rescue crews about a minute or so to get the pilot out of the lake."

The plane was completely ...

Sparta Police: Blocked Plate Ends with Drug Charges

SPARTA, NJ – A Phillipsburg man pulled over for a traffic stop, ended up facing drug charges on April 11.  Around 7:55 p.m. on Route 15 Sparta Police Officer Steven Guido stopped a silver Saturn Ion for having an obstructed license plate, police report.

Charles Williams, 29, was driving with two passengers in the car.  When speaking with Williams, Guido smelled marijuana in the ...

The Issue of Alternatives to Elected School Boards

April 14, 2018

The time of electing local school boards should come to an end. According to the National School Boards Association, “the local school board is a critical public link to public schools. Whether elected or appointed, school board members serve their communities in several important ways. First and foremost, school boards look out for students. Education is not a line item on the school ...

Upcoming Events

Sun, April 29, 3:30 PM

Codey Arena, West Orange

Girls Try Hockey Free Clinic


Fri, May 4, 7:00 PM

Sparta Evangelical Free Church, Sparta

Veritas Christian Academy presents The Music Man

Arts & Entertainment


Sun, May 6, 7:00 AM

Liberty State Park, Jersey City

11th Annual Susan G. Komen North Jersey Race for ...

Health & Wellness


Thu, May 10, 6:00 PM

First Presbyterian Church of Sparta, Sparta

Creating a Pollinators Garden - Talk & Plant Sale

Education Home & Garden

Sun, May 13, 1:00 PM

Van Kirk Homestead Museum, Sparta

Life Along the Wallkil River


Sun, May 27, 1:00 PM

Van Kirk Homestead Museum, Sparta

Life Along the Wallkil River


Sun, June 10, 1:00 PM

Van Kirk Homestead Museum, Sparta

Life Along the Wallkil River


Sun, June 24, 1:00 PM

Van Kirk Homestead Museum, Sparta

Life Along the Wallkil River


Newton Council Candidates Call for Elections to be Moved

April 12, 2018

NEWTON, NJ – Four candidates for the Town of Newton Council have the same idea; move the election for council members to the November general elections.  Candidates Matt Dickson and Jason Schlaffer and Ludmilla Mecaj and Wayne Levante just do not agree on how to make that happen.

As a Faulkner Act town, Newton originally established their non-partisan elections to be held separately ...

You Could WIN a New Roof Through No Roof Left Behind

If you live in Sussex, Morris or Warren County and your home needs a new roof, you’re in luck! Jeff Alte Jr. Roofing & Siding will be giving away a free roof to a family in one of these counties through the national No Roof Left Behind program.

Nominations are being accepted through May 31st online only.  Nominate yourself or anyone you know who needs a new roof. Nominees must ...

Buying a Home Is Cheaper Than Renting in Majority of US

Great news for first-time New Jersey home buyers! The results of the 2018 Rental Affordability Report from ATTOM show that buying a median-priced home is more affordable than renting a three-bedroom property in 54% of U.S. counties analyzed for the report.

The updated numbers show that renting a three-bedroom property in the United States requires an average of 38.8% of income.

The least ...

Home Buying Myths Slayed

Team Nest Builder wants YOU to know the truths about buying a New Jersey home!

Some Highlights:

The average down payment for first-time homebuyers is only 6%!

Despite mortgage interest rates being over 4%, rates are still below historic numbers.

88% of property managers raised their rents in the last 12 months!

The credit score requirements for mortgage ...

Buy A Home To Build Your Family's Wealth

Over the next five years, home prices are expected to appreciate, on average, by 3.6% per year and to grow by 18.2% cumulatively, according to Pulsenomics’ most recent Home Price Expectation Survey. Team Nest Builder wants you to understand what that means for homeowners and their equity positions.

As an example, let’s assume a young couple purchased and closed on a $250,000 home ...

Now’s the Time to Buy Your NJ Luxury Home

House no longer fits your needs? Planning on buying a New Jersey luxury home? Now is the time to do so!

Recently, the Institute for Luxury Home Marketing released its Luxury Market Report which showed that in today’s premium home market, buyers are in control.  The inventory of homes for sale in the luxury market far exceeds the number of people searching to purchase these ...

Buy a Home NOW Before Mortgage Rates Climb Higher

Whether you’re a buyer searching for your first home, or a homeowner looking to move up to your next home, Team Nest Builder knows you should pay attention to where mortgage interest rates are heading.

Over the course of 2018, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey, rates increased from 3.95% in the first week of January to 4.40% in the first week of April.

At ...

A Special Performance by The Mental Health Players Raises Awareness of Mental Health Issues

April 23, 2018

In recognition of National Mental Health Awareness Month in May, the Mental Health Association of Essex and Morris, NAMI Sussex and Bridgeway Rehabilitation Services are coming together to sponsor a special performance by The Mental Health Players. The Mental Health Players is a group of volunteer performers who use theatrical improvisation and role playing to bring the ...