No Matter Where You Are on Life's Journey, You Are Welcome at First Congregational United Church of Christ
Each worship service at First Congregational UCC is a unique experience. Because we are a Congregational church with members coming to us from different branches of Christianity, our worship liturgy changes to meet the needs of our diverse congregation and touch upon the worship life of all of our members. In other words, our congregation is composed of former Baptists, Lutherans, Methodists, Presbyterians, Christian Scientists, etc. and persons with no particular denominational background at all, coming together to participate in our common worship, express our individual beliefs, learn from each other and thus grow closer to God.
Our ministry leaders craft each service around a message taken from a passage of scripture, a message that informs us about God's will for our daily lives. The liturgy created is designed to reflect the message from the scripture. Our congregation believes that the Bible is the authority we turn to in order to discern God's will for our lives. We also believe that God is still speaking to us through the words of the Bible, that God has yet more truth and light to break forth from these sacred writings, and that we must share our thoughts and ideas if we are to distill God's Word from the biblical texts.
Service each Sunday at 10 am.
Diversity in liturgy is also made necessary by our other special times of worship. Each year we have three youth led services. One is our annual Advent Youth Pageant, another is led by the entire Sunday School and a third is planned and led by our confirmation class. Other yearly special services include our Ash Wednesday service, Maundy Thursday service, and our Easter Sunrise service.
Open Sacraments & Rites
We practice Open Communion. Which means we believe that all God's children, no matter where they are in their walk with Christ, are welcome at the Lord's Table. We believe in one baptism. Which means that if you have been baptized, no matter when, where or by whom, our church recognizes you as part of the body of Christ and welcomes your participation in our ministries.
The sacrament of baptism is first and foremost a visible expression of God’s unconditional love for the child. Beyond that the parents also declare their faith and make solemn vows during the ceremony to raise their child in the Christian faith. If there are god-parents they pledge to assist the parents in raising the child in the Christian faith.
Our Confirmation Program is a two year experience for adolescents entering 7th grade and older. The program engages Confirmands in better understanding and taking hold of the baptismal vows that were made on their behalf. Program activities include:
Twice a month on Sundays Confirmands participate in Classroom Instruction from 8:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. Together Confirmands learn about the early Christian church, what Protestants believe, service to others and the story of our own denomination the "United Church of Christ." All instruction includes large emphasis on discussions and input from Confirmands.
Learning About other Communities of Faith
Throughout the two-year program, Confirmands visit over eight different Christian and Non Christian Communities of Faith. This allows them the opportunity to experience first hand different faiths and culturally different traditions and beliefs.
Service and Mission Work
One of the biggest emphasis in our Program is service to others. Together as a class our Confirmands participate in six different service experiences each year that allows them to step out of their "comfort zones" and help others in need. Confirmands are required to complete 20 service hours each year they are in the program.
An Annual confirmation retreat is planned every year to spend more time learning about the Sacraments, developing a Statement of Faith and building community among themselves.
To find our more about our Confirmation Program please contact Martha Mendoza at firstname.lastname@example.org. Looking forward to hearing from you.
Should you choose our Church for your marriage ceremony, it is a privilege to be a part of this important chapter in your life. It is our hope that in preparing for your wedding you will not only become closer to one another, but closer to God and to our community of faith.
In our Christian tradition, funerals and memorial services are important worship services in which we proclaim the Christian promise of the Resurrection at the same time that we provide an important opportunity to comfort one another in our shared loss. The ordained leadership of our Church are ready to help you plan an appropriate Christian memorial service in our sanctuary or in a local funeral home.