David Heinrich’s civil rights and free speech Methodist upbringing was very progressive. As an adult in 1970 he said he discovered Unity Temple in Oak Park, Illinois which at the time was a Unitarian Universalist Church.
“I felt at home in church for the first time,” David said.
Various moves for profession and family led him to Battle Creek. He then discovered People’s and attended briefly in the 1990s where he appreciated Jill McAllister’s ministry. In 2015 he found his way back to People’s where he has been delighted to discover the ministry of the Rev. Rachel Lonberg.
“What I find at People’s is a spiritual-intellectual-aesthetic environment that agrees with my hunger to grow and mature,” David said. “The services and discussions, whether formal or informal, are open and stimulating amongst receptive, free thinking people where learning something new, and sometimes important, often occurs.”
David said, “Freedom, reason and democracy are important to me; and that is what I find among the Unitarian Universalists at People’s Church. It is all quite thrilling and encourages me to return each Sunday and to participate in constructive discussion when I can.”
David recently led a Saturday morning discussion on the subject of Sharia Law and free speech as it pertains to non-Muslins. The purpose was to exchange information that would result in increased awareness of Sharia influence in the U. S. on the financial and education systems here in the U. S.
He said he expects many of us have or soon will have Muslim friends, colleagues and neighbors. He foresees this awareness becoming more important with inevitable demographics changes.
David said he would like to see programs for helping non-muslins become knowledgeable about Islamic requirements for Muslim behavior toward non-Muslims.
(David, 73, is a mechanical engineer. He is divorced, has one daughter Victoria, who lives in Arizona with her husband and two sons.)