2010 AEU Certification Ceremony
CHARGE TO THE LEADERS
AEU ASSEMBLY June 2010
Friends, we are witness to an historic moment in the career of The Ethical Culture Movement. This morning we are honored to formally welcome Hugh Taft-Morales, Mary Herman and Amanda Poppei into Ethical Culture leadership. They are three individuals of remarkable intelligence and exemplary dedication to the ideals and mission of Ethical Culture.
It is altogether appropriate that we are witnesses to this event because in our democratic movement, it is we, the members of Ethical Culture, who ultimately validate the status of those we choose to lead us, recognizing that by leading, they also serve.
Ethical Culture is the only so-called “religion of humanity” founded in the nineteenth century that has survived into the twenty-first. And it has done this without the fixed points of sacred scriptures, immutable dogmas, timeless rituals or an unchanging deity as an object of worship. I believe Ethical Culture has endured for more than 134 years because of a lineage of inspired men and women, such as these, who have been captivated by its ideals and who have committed their vocational lives to the timeless ideals that lie at the center of Ethical Culture’s mission. Read more »
Amanda Poppei earned a BA in Religious Studies from Yale University. She also has a Masters of Divinity from Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, DC. Amanda started young imagining a life in religious leadership and is a Unitarian Universalist minister, with a strong background in interfaith work. She did her intern work at River Road Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Bethesda, MD, and served as a chaplain at the Washington Hospital Center, where she completed a unit of Clinical Pastoral Education. Read more »
Comments about Strength from Hugh for Certification Ceremony
Hugh Taft-Morales is originally a born and raised Connecticut boy. He graduated from Yale University and earned a Masters in Philosophy from University of Kent at Canterbury, England. He taught philosophy and history for twenty-five years in Washington, D. C.
He discovered and grabbed hold of Ethical Culture around 1994 at the Washington Society, eventually serving on their Board and as their president. He is a graduate of the Humanist Institute and of the Leadership Training Program of the American Ethical Union. Hugh has served as an Intern Leader in Northern Virginia, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and the Ethical Society Without Walls. He was very busy the last few years and he has plenty of friends here in this room.
Next year Hugh will continue working as a leader with the Baltimore Society and ESWoW. He is also currently director of the Washington Society’s Coming-of-Age Program, and serves as Secretary of the AEU National Leaders Council.
On the more personal side he is married to Maureen, a Latin American analyst for the Congressional Research Service and they have three (he says wonderful) children - Sean (23), Maya (17), and Justin (14). Read more »