Unitarians in Summit

Banner on the Unitarian Church of Summit

When Summit’s Unitarian church was built in 1913, it was originally known as All Souls’ Church. The architect, Mr. Joy Wheeler Dow, was a member of the congregation.

Aside from that tidbit of history, if you’ve ever driven by and wondered about that multicolored rainbow banner across the front of the church, here’s what a sign mounted near the front door has to say about it:

In October 2007, the congregation of The Unitarian Church in Summit overwhelmingly approved the Moving Toward Peace Statement and Resolution, which among other things calls for an end to the war in Iraq.

As a visual statement of this resolution, our congregation designed and created the Human Toll of War, a wall of ribbons on the front of our church. Each ribbon represents a United States serviceman or servicewoman who has died since the Iraq war began on March 20, 2003.

Ribbons of different colors represent the losses in different years, with green ribbons signifying armed forces from New Jersey. Red ribbons interspersed throughout the display symbolize the Iraqi civilians and security forces who have died in the conflict. Each red ribbon stands for 10,000 fallen Iraqis.

Individual members, friends of the congregation and children from Religious Education classes wrote the names on the ribbons. We attached the ribbons to grids and raised them between the columns in front of our church for Memorial Day weekend 2008.

On Sunday, May 25, 2008, we read the names of each American out loud. Each week that other American military are killed, we will add ribbons to the Human Toll of War exhibit until the conflict ceases and American military forces are withdrawn.

For further information, visit the church’s website at www.ucsummit.org or call the church office at (908) 273-3245.

So there we are.



Meola, P.E. (1998). Images of America: Summit. Arcadia Publishing: Charleston, SC. ISBN 0738563307.

One Comment to “Unitarians in Summit”

  1. The frieze lettering just looks off-centre. They’re Christian-like right? They should believe in second chances: REDO.

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