Ethical Society Mid Rivers


Two phrases you will hear often repeated in the Ethical Societies across America are "Deed before Creed" and "Our goal is to bring out the best in others and thereby in ourselves."

The speakers' topics cover a wide range of interests... from philosophy to social issues to current events to environmental issues.

Children are invited to attend our Sunday Ethical Education for Kids (SEEK) programs while their parents attend the main program.

Our meetings are informal and guests are welcome.


A little about Moms Demand Action message:

Much like Mothers Against Drunk Driving was created to reduce drunk driving, Moms Demand
Action for Gun Sense in America ( was created to advocate for stronger laws and policies that will reduce gun violence and save lives. We are a non-partisan grassroots movement of American mothers demanding common-sense solutions to address our country’s dangerous culture of gun violence, which jeopardizes the safety of our children and families.
America is in a state of crisis: every day, 88 Americans are killed with guns. This violence affects everyone, everywhere – from big cities to small towns to rural communities – and as mothers, we can no longer wait for politics to catch up to the policies we need. We can support the Second Amendment while doing so much more to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people and make our communities safer.

Learn More Download These PDF files:

The American Ethical Union honored Free Your Voice with the 2017 Elliott-Black Award at our 102nd Assembly, “Bmorethical2017: Communities Confronting Systemic Racism,” in Baltimore, Maryland.

Free Your Voice is a Baltimore youth group that fights for environmental justice. It was started by, and is composed of, students at Ben Franklin High School (a Baltimore City public school). They rallied their community to protect the health of residents and engage in political action that betters their lives.

Follow Free Your Voice on Facebook and Twitter. Watch award ceremony here:

The Opinion Pages | Letters

A Canadian Welcome for Syrian Refugees

To the Editor:

You are to be congratulated on your extensive article about Syrian refugees and their warm welcome by their Canadian sponsors (“Refugees Hear a Foreign Word: Welcome,”  front page, July 1). It puts a human face on people we have been encouraged to fear and reject in this election cycle.

The article has personal resonance for me. Ten years ago I founded an organization that provides housing and a range of humanitarian services for asylum seekers fleeing persecution and war. Almost all are survivors of torture. We locate hosts who have spare bedrooms to provide housing and then mobilize volunteers to offer the support necessary to enable our guests to achieve total independence in American society.

Despite the egregious and opportunistic fear-mongering of Gov. Chris Christie, who has declared that the state of New Jersey will not help resettle any Syrian refugees, I am proud to say that we have resettled two Syrian families, one that shared our home with my wife and me. We found them to be delightful people whose greatest interest was to establish themselves in their new homeland and build a viable future for themselves and their children.

Though our clients could not be more different from their hosts with regard to race, ethnicity, cultural background and, most dramatically, life experience, over time winning relationships are molded and our common humanity comes to the fore.


Hackensack, N.J.

The writer is the founder of the Northern New Jersey Coalition for Political Asylum Seekers and a professor of human rights at Columbia University.

Recently the much anticipated visit to ESMR by a the an exceptional leader of the national Ethical Movement, Hugh Taft-Morales, resulted in a weekend of fellowship and studies in the area of Ethical Culture. This video of his platform presentation is a perfect primer for those wishing to get a feel for what the Ethical Society is all about.

Hugh Taft-Morales taught philosophy and history for twenty-five years in Washington, D.C., having earned a Masters in Philosophy from University of Kent at Canterbury, England in 1986 and having graduated from Yale University in 1979. In 2009 he completed a three-year leadership certification program with the Humanist Institute, and he was certified by the American Ethical Union in 2010 as an Ethical Culture Leader.ecently ,

Hugh has been an invigorating presence in Ethical Culture. He has been active in the Washington Ethical Society, serving as director of its Coming-of-Age program (2009-2011), a Board member (2002-2005), and Board president (2006). He has also been engaged in American Ethical Union work, serving on the AEU planning committee for two years, as co-coordinator for the Presidents Council AEU for a year, and as secretary of the AEU National Leaders Council at present. , He is a consulting Leader with the Ethical Society Without Walls and serves as Secretary of the National Leaders Council of the American Ethical Union. He joined the Baltimore Ethical Society as its professional leader in 2010. He also serves as Leader of the Ethical Humanist Society of Philadelphia.

His vision for Ethical Culture is that it flourish as a clearly defined and reenergized movement inspired by Ethical Humanism and effective in collective ethical action and social justice campaigns. He is humbled and grateful for the challenge of working in Ethical Culture as a leader.

Hugh – who lives in Takoma Park, Maryland with his wife Maureen, a Latin American Analyst with the Congressional Research Service – has three beloved children, Sean, Maya, and Justin.

Singing and playing guitar, practicing yoga, and watching “way too much sports” are among Hugh’s enjoyments.

A welcoming dinner for Hugh was held at the home of our board president on Saturday evening.
Hugh (left) took advantage of the occasion to do one of his favorite thisgs, play music.
Saturday featured an evening of dinner, fellowship, and music.
Hugh Taft-Morales' platform talk for ESMR
Hugh Taft-Morales' paper on Ethical Society membership
ESMR Press Release about Hugh Taft-Morales' visit

Ethical Society Mid Rivers meets on

Sunday Mornings - 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.
University of Missouri Extension Center
260 Brown Road

Saint Peters, Missouri  63376

Sunday, February 18,  10:30 AM


Living Ethics Discussion platform

Join us for a discussion about ethical issues, which vary from month to month, as we discuss the role that ethics plays in our everyday lives. The discussions are lively & casual, providing intellectual stimulation and fellowship


Sunday, February 25,  10:30 AM


David Fiedler
Author, The Enemy Among Us: POWs in Missouri during WWII

Guest speaker David Fiedler, a local author and president of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod Foundation, will present a talk about his latest book, The Enemy Among Us. Few people are aware that during World War II, more than 15,000 captured German and Italian soldiers were brought to Missouri, held in 30 camps sprinkled throughout the state. 


It was an amazing time, largely positive for all involved, and The Enemy Among Us recalls this fascinating chapter of history as it played out in Missouri, a story which is all but forgotten today.


Life as a POW was a surprisingly pleasant experience. The men ate well and lived under the same conditions as the Americans assigned to guard them. The prisoners enjoyed a great deal of freedom and worked on area farms, where friendships often flourished with local residents.


Dave's lecture on the POWs tells how the men lived and combines funny and touching stories with over 50 rare photos of the prisoners and the Missourians who worked with them. For his work, he received the Governor’s Award for the Humanities and is a frequent presenter on the topic. 


A little more about David:


David Fiedler has been a writer for more than 20 years. His material has appeared in the Wall Street Journal and been carried by the Associated Press and the New York Times Syndicate. 


Writing The Enemy Among Us allowed Dave, a life-long Missourian, to combine his knowledge of the state with degrees in German and political science and experience as an officer in the U.S. Army. For it he received the Governor’s Award for the Humanities. Dave also wrote an accompanying novel and screenplay to go with the original history.

To Be Rescheduled

Holocaust Museum Visit

 Due to the threat of bad weather, this event originally scheduled for January 7th was delayed.
A new date is forthcoming. Please keep an eye on this space for more information.

All members and visitors are welcome to join the Sunday School children and their families for a tour of the Holocaust Museum.  Specific information about exactly where and what time we’ll be meeting will be sent out soon. In the meantime, please read more about the facility here, and please plan to attend:

April 27th 2014: Rachel Levi: "Understanding the Good Food Movement"

Rachel Levi, Program Director of EarthDance Farms, described the work done on and by EarthDance Farms which is a non-profit organic farm school located at Missouri's oldest organic farm. In her current position at EarthDance, Rachel oversees the organization's various educational programs, seeks funding opportunities, and manages partnerships. Her current position allows her to facilitate transformative hands-on learning for adults and children through EarthDance's apprenticeship and youth programming. She is enthusiastic to continue growing the good food movement!

March 23rd 2014: Jillian Adams: "Affordable Care Act, Medicaid Expansion and Current Reproductive Health Legislation"

Jillian Adams, Planned Parenthood will talk about the Affordable Care Act, Medicaid Expansion and current reproductive health legislation and will offer opportunities for making a healthier community. Jillian Adams, MSW, is the St. Louis-based grassroots organizer for Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri. 

March 9th 2014:  "Going Where Gender Isn't," by Andy Semler.

Andy explains; "Genderqueer people are gaining increased visibility within a society that doesn't legally recognize our existence, but we are still a minority within a minority. This talk will explore the social, economic and health aspects of living outside the gender binary in the USA. I will also share from my own 'coming of gender' story, as we begin a broader dialog. What can the humanist community do to create a society where people of all genders flourish?" Andy is an active member of the LGBT Center of St. Louis, the Metro Trans Umbrella Group, and the greater online community of non-binary trans and genderqueer folk everywhere.