Knoxville Shooting (TVUUC) Hits Close to Home

Busy, weird day yesterday as the church targeted in Knoxville is my Mother’s church and church I grew up in.

She did not see it because she was shielded by the organ.  She is shook up , of course, but is being resilient as is whole congregation. They are cleaning up today and are already mobilizing to support each other.

One of the fallen was a friend of my Mom’s.  Greg McKendry was on the church finance committee and was always around the building figuring out how to save money.  He used to be a purchasiing agent before retiring, and brought that frugality to the church.  I’m sure it was appreciated.  He was a loving person who had recently become the foster father to a teen ager who had bee bouncing around in the foster system.

Monday news:  Shooter apparently blamed “liberal movement” for his woes.  That is why he targeted TVUUC, a church active in civil rights for African-Americans, Central Americans (part of sanctuary movement), and LGBT.
Seven principles of UU faith:

There are seven principles which Unitarian Universalist congregations affirm and promote:

  • The inherent worth and dignity of every person;
  • Justice, equity and compassion in human relations;
  • Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth in our congregations;
  • A free and responsible search for truth and meaning;
  • The right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large;
  • The goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all;
  • Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.


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2 responses to “Knoxville Shooting (TVUUC) Hits Close to Home

  1. Yesterday, flipping across the cable news channels I got a glimpse of news about shooting at a church in Knoxville. My first thought, I am ashamed to say, was “oh I wonder what fundy church pushed someone too far this time . . .”

    And then I finally heard that it was the TVUUC.

    Raised UU in Indiana, I attended the TVUUC while a grad student at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. I met my wife there and for a time served a member of the ministerial relations committee for a time. I spoke from the pulpit at the church once or twice.

    I was shocked and saddened. Both at the attack and arrogant assumption that such I think never happen at a UU church.

  2. Thomas Propst

    My heart and prayers go out to the TVUUC. I am a UU member at the UUCSV in Northumberland, Pennsylvania, and an Army Vet. I am sorrowed to hear that fellow UUs were hurt or killed by this misguided man, who is a fellow Army personnel. I am not surprised about this type of Hate Crime attack on a UU congregation, because we are used to being attacked from those who are misguided, or don’t understand our principles. I know that they are afraid of the unknown, and false teaching from their religious leadership. I don’t understand why he would even consider that UU’s are to blame for this countries problems. His reasoning does not fit with his actions. It reminds me of the time when a guy tried to run me over with his van, because he could not hit a woman. You read that right. His reasons and actions are ludicrous. I cannot help but think how similar this terroristic attack is with those from years past when the KKK and other white supremacist groups attacked church members, and bombed their churches that were owned by those who were of a different color from their own. I truly expect that this will not be an isolated incident, and we will all have to keep our guards up for future terroristic attacks from others who will sympathize with this individual, and what to continue where he left off. I know that history will repeat itself, as long as we have this type of ignorance and hatred in the world. Now the question remains as to what can we do to prevent this from happening again. Do we need to close and lock our doors during services? Will we need to put up metal detectors at all entrances? Do we need to hire armed personnel to protect us during any church services, UU event, and other gatherings? Do we have to restrict and lose our freedom, just like what Homeland Security has been doing across this great nation of ours? I hope not. I for one rather be truly free, and be able to protect myself, then submit to terrorism, and lose my freedom. What are your thoughts on this? Thanks for informing of this ordeal, which might have never reached us by other media means.

    Blessed be to all of you.
    Thomas Propst

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