Message from our Minister

I’m so glad you are taking a look at the website for the First UU Church of Austin. Unitarian Universalism is an historic liberal religious tradition dedicated to honoring the sacred in every soul while building the beloved community on earth. There is room here for a range of views of God, humanity and the purpose of life.

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As participants in a faith tradition that honors intelligence and heart, compassion and questioning, service and conversation, the people here have expressed the church’s mission as “To gather in community to nourish souls, transform lives, and do justice.” This website will tell you more about how Unitarian Universalists go about doing these things. It is my hope that those of you who feel drawn to these values will visit us on Sunday morning, then grow into being more and more a part of all that is going on here.

– Reverend Meg Barnhouse


We bid you welcome,

who come with weary spirit seeking rest.

We bid you welcome,

who come with hope in your heart.

We bid you welcome,

who are seekers of a new faith.

Who come to probe and explore.

Who come to learn.

We bid you welcome,

who enter this hall as a homecoming.

Who have found here room for your spirit.

Who find in this people a family.

Whoever you are,

whatever you are,

wherever you are on your journey,

we bid you welcome.

 Richard Gilbert


Ordained in 1981, the Reverend Meg Barnhouse is a well-known Unitarian Universalist writer, singer-songwriter and speaker. She came into parish ministry from ministry as a college chaplain and a pastoral counselor. After graduating with a degree in Political Science and Psychology from Duke University, she trained at Princeton Theological Seminary, where she won the Grier-Davies Preaching Prize and the Bible Knowledge Contest. As a college chaplain, she taught World Religions, Church History, Human Sexuality and Public Speaking.

She has two sons, Sam and Ned Durrett. Sam is in medical school, is married to Emily, who teaches high school biology, and he raises bees. Ned is a senior at University of South Carolina, and he and his band “Ned Durrett and the Kindly Gents” are popular in the Southeast. Meg’s life partner, Kiya Heartwood, is an award-winning singer-songwriter and composer.

You can find Meg’s books at or on the UUA bookstore. She is a frequent columnist for the UU World online magazine.

Contact Reverend Barnhouse via her email at or via telephone at (512) 452-6168 ext. 304.