Calvin: Our Crazy Ass Grandpappy
Donald O'Bloggin wrote something very frowny about Calvin NOT "belonging" in Unitarian Universalist congregations.
Donald, dear heart, Calvin practically INVENTED the Reformation. Without the Reformation there wouldn't be either Unitarians or Universalists, hence no Unitarian Universalism.
I'm not a fan of the man who burned out martyr Servetus at the stake, either, but we ought to know more about him than the old pre-destination thing that everyone knows and rejects.
Calvin made some genius contributions to religious life as you and I know it, including to the ministry as you and I know it and have benefitted from it.
He may be a crazy-ass grandaddy in some very serious ways, but he's still our crazy-ass grandaddy. See, when you come from a dissenting tradition, you have to know WHO and WHAT you dissented from to get any juice from it. Trust me, as a kid who spends an awful lot of time with Mr. Calvin -- your understanding of, and appreciation of contemporary Unitarian Universalism can be so much more thrilling when you don't approach it as a tradition that sprang from Dana McLean Greeley's helmet, fully formed and in full armor, in 1961.
And since when is ANY legitimate topic of conversation or historic personage forbidden from our congregations? That's part of what we call the Free Church, and like it or not, Calvin helped make the Free Church possible.
Now all you brainiac historian types can weigh in.