No matter who you are, or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here at University Congregational United Church of Christ. Young, old, sure of your path, or still searching — we invite you to join us in imagining love and justice – as Jesus did – and acting to change the world.

Right now, during the pandemic, we are still united as church. Our service is streamed on YouTube and Facebook. You will find the links just below this section on our home page. New services are offered weekly at 10 am on Sundays, and are available on line after that.

We strive to walk in the path of Jesus, and to offer an authentic welcome to everyone who walks through our door. If you are new to us, we would love to get to know you and answer your questions about our church, even though we cannot greet you in person. A member of our Welcome Committee, or a pastor, would be happy to correspond on email or talk with you on the phone. Click here to arrange for a “meeting.”

Our worship service starts at 10 am and includes hymns, prayers, scripture reading and a sermon. It usually lasts about an hour. Right now we are worshiping online and will adjust this message once we are able to meet together in our sanctuary once again.  More information here.

Children are an important part of our community, and are welcome for all or part or the service. 

UCUCC Parking Map

View for detailed Google Map.

Parking can be a challenge in the University District! Persistence, patience and an early start are keys to success.

UW has free parking on Sundays. Enter the main campus gate at NE 45th and 17th Ave NE and turn left past the toll booth. It's about a three-block walk to the church. The UW Meany Garage at 15th Ave. NE and NE 41st St. is a five-block walk.

The church also owns three parking lots - Lot A is across the street from the church on 16th Ave. E. Lot B is beneath Sortun Court, just north of the church on the east side of 16th Ave. E. (It closes at 2 p.m.) Lot C (for those with difficulty walking, young children and visitors) is at the corner of 15th NE and NE 45th St., next to the church.

If you need to be assured of a close parking spot, you can call the church office before noon on Friday to reserve one: 206-524-2322.

During this pandemic, we have discontinued our in-person lunches. We would love to meet with you via email or phone, however. Click here to arrange a meeting with a Welcome Committee Volunteer or pastor.

We can explore and explain a range of topics about our church, from history, to theology, to membership. Please contact us at the link above for more information.

We are an inter-generational church and strive to be family-friendly, with an active ministry for children and youth. All ages are welcome in worship. We also offer nursery and child-care, Younger children begin the service with us and usually leave after about 15 minutes. Older children have the option of leaving for a special sermon time. Junior high and high school youth meet at 9 am and then often sit together in worship. Give us a call at 206-524-2322 for more specifics.

Our programs for children and youth continue during this pandemic. Sign up at the bottom of the home page to receive our Children's Ministries and/or Youth Ministries newsletter.

Hearing Impaired: Our sanctuary has an induction loop system that uses the T-Coil mode of your hearing aids. You can get the necessary equipment just before entering the Sanctuary on the right or ask any usher.

Visually Impaired: We offer each Sunday's program in large print for easier readability.

Wheelchair Access: The front entry is wheelchair accessible as are the rest rooms. Please don't hesitate to ask for assistance.

Last February I was with a group of preachers, and one of them began talking about the word “precarious.” He suggested that the word has its roots in Greek, and in that sense, can be understood as meaning “before grace.” (pre-charis: the Greek word for grace, often translated as “gift”). The preacher went on to talk about how tenuous life can feel in those moments when one is waiting for something new to show up, and when one is hoping that new thing to show up will indeed be grace.

In the time since that conversation I have investigated the definition and derivation of the word and have not been able to substantiate the preacher’s claim. The references I find suggest the background of the word is obscure. It could be related to the Latin “prex,” from which comes our English word “pray.” Thus, when “precarious” comes into use in the 16th century, it means “to depend on the will or favor of another.” In the earliest appearances of the word, that “another“ seems to be God. Whatever it’s history, I still appreciate the imagery of the preacher’s “pre-grace” observation. It is not unusual for us preachers to stretch a bit when trying to illustrate a point, and I like what he did here.

In current usage, the adjective precarious indicates a dangerously unstable situation or position where the outcome is uncertain.

Certainly, we are in a precarious time, however one understands that word. It is a time of instability and uncertainty. It is a time when we are dependent on the will and favor of others. And it is also a time where we are looking for grace.

Here on the farm where I am spending my days in this precarious time, Lamb Watch has begun. This is the time when all my Facebook friends watch with me for the birth of spring lambs. I began this tradition about eight years ago and every year more and more folks have joined in for regular progress reports on lambing.

When I was in Great Britain almost a decade ago, an old Welsh shepherd told me that lambing time was his favorite season. “It’s all right there,” he said. “Risk and reward, energy and vulnerability, life and death.” Springtime, as it turns out, has always been a precarious time.

This spring, four ewes have been expecting lambs. One of them has given birth, and that one little lamb has brought great joy to the Lamb Watch community.

But we are still waiting on the others. We are still watching for lambs. When I wake in the night, my thoughts go to the ewes down in the barn, in their precarious, pregnant state. I roll out of bed, put a jacket over my blue flannel pajamas with images of sheep on them, pick up a flashlight, and head out to check on the actual sheep. I want to know that all is well, and that if the sheep need “the will or favor“ of the shepherd, I will be there to oblige.

This year‘s Lamb Watch has been unusual, in that the first lamb came 10 days ago, and we are still waiting for the others. It seems that this Watch, as if to match the world’s mood right now, requires extra patience. And yet the one newborn lamb has made her appearance to remind us that precarious as it is, spring is also inevitable. As if to carry hope for all of us, the lamb invites us to keep watching. We can see grace all around us, as spring buds explode in beauty, and new life emerges everywhere.

So let me return to my preacher friend’s observation, and why I was so taken by it in February, and even more just now. The word “precarious” does describe our current pandemic situation. This is a time of uncertainty and grief. We wake in the middle of the night and wonder what is next. Often we don’t even know where to look.

But may we understand this “precarious” time as one not only of instability but also of expectation. Such an understanding gives us a path forward. It means that we recognize that God is with us. It means that we that we wait with hope. It means that grace is inevitable. And that makes all the difference.