Resources for our Church Community
Want to submit an article to Church and Home? Learn more about church history? Get reimbursed for an item you bought for your committee? You will find the answers to these questions and more in the drop-down sections below.
And don’t forget to explore the “MyUCUCC” section. This gives you access to the church directory on-line (and on your phone). You can see your giving record, correct your address, and even upload a photograph of you and your family. Sign up below.
Join our team!
University Congregational United Church of Christ is a large, dynamic, progressive church in the University District of Seattle, WA. We are committed to being a fair and just employer. Join us as we walk together on God’s transforming adventure, following the path of love and justice as revealed to us by Jesus.
Open positions can be found here.
What is MyUCUCC?
What is MyUCUCC?
MyUCUCC is a convenient way to connect to important church information. It provides community members 24/7 access to their personal information.
In addition, it gives access to tools that can help you consider your own spiritual gifts and passions, as well as the unique skills that you may be willing to share within the church community. Your MyUCUCC record is personal and private. With the exception of a few staff members, you are the only one who can access it.
MyUCUCC integrates with our church records; because this is proprietary information it requires that you login. Everyone who is an active member of the University Congregational UCC Community is eligible to create a login and have on-line access to information.
What kinds of things can I use MyUCUCC for?
MyUCUCC allow you to access or church information an perform a variety of functions:
- Fill out your personal profile to identify spiritual gifts, passions and skills.
- Look up contact information for people who are currently listed in our printed church directory.
- View only the calendar groups you want to see. (e.g. Church-wide events, Youth events, Children’s Ministry events).
- Give online from your checking account, debit card, or credit card.
- View your giving history and print your own contribution statements.
- Update your profile with a new address, phone number, email or even your family or individual photo.
You can opt out of the online directory and choose to have your phone number and/or email address unlisted online. Your information will be included unless you tell us not to. Please email the office if you want to opt out. Your personal information is held secure by ACS Technologies and an added layer of encryption security applies to all financial transactions.
We will continue to integrate the website with the church database. Some future benefits will include the ability to register for events and submit requests for rooms and equipment.
How do I login?
Follow the steps below to establish your MyUCUCC account. An illustrated version of these instructions, which also includes information about creating your personal profile, is available here as a PDF: All About MyUCUCC Instructional Handout.
- Click on the “MyUCUCC” link in the footer.
- A new screen that takes you to a secure website with a “Sign In” box will appear.
- Below the Sign In box click on “Need a Login? Click Here.”
- Enter the email you have on file with the church and your first and last name.
- Click on the “Find Me” button. (If the system was unable to locate your record, please call or email the office The most likely reason it didn’t work is that your name and/or email are spelled differently in the church database.)
- A verification email will be sent to you.
- Click the link in the email to finish your account setup.
- When the link opens a new window in your web browser, simply create a password following the onscreen instructions.
- Click on the “Sign In” button.
- You have now gained access to MyUCUCC. Be sure to write down your login email and password for future access.
Questions about MyUCUCC? Call 206-524-2322 or email the office.
Leadership Parish Relations Committee
Leadership Parish Relations Committee (LPRC)
In this time of unique challenge and unaccustomed distance, UCUCC’s Leadership Parish Relations Committee (LPRC) remains ready to help with any issues regarding your relationship with any of the pastors. Our committee confidentially hears issues, moderates conversations, and helps move parties toward resolution. If you’ve got an issue, please reach out to us at LPRC@universityucc.org.
Cara Gray Helmer
Church Governance - How our ministries are organized
Church Governance – organized to support our ministries
Our goal is to live out our call in the world as Christians, while maintaining a lean organizational structure and supporting the spirited work of our congregation. Here is a visual representation of our organizational structure: Church Structure Diagram
Click here for a pdf of the 2017-2018 lay ministry leaders in our various ministries.
Our work is organized into five ministries –
Love and Justice
This ministry includes nonprofit organizations that we participate in (including University Congregational Housing Association and Child Learning and Care Center) plus Superfluity, Sacred Earth Matters and approximately 20 additional Love and Justice Action Teams. These Action teams cover areas as diverse as action to address homelessness, gun violence prevention and hunger issues.
Worship and Music
All of the elements that go into building and preparing for our worship services are the responsibility of this ministry. A Worship and Music committee attends to the service itself. Action teams take responsibility for ushering, serving communion, recruiting liturgists and preparing the worship space. Many people participate in the Chancel Choir, the Children’s Choir and several music groups. The Creativity Council integrates the arts into worship to enrich this experience for everyone.
Christian Education and Spiritual Growth Ministry
This ministry covers all of the ways that we seek to support each other in the growth of our minds and spirits. It encompasses the Children’s Ministry, Youth Ministry, Adult Education, the Lecture Series, Seabeck All-Church Camp and the Scheyer Library.
Calling and Engagement Ministry
A collection of committees within this ministry help to welcome newcomers and help people both identify and live into their call. This ministry also helps us, as a community, live out our covenant to “Care for and pray for each other in trials of the spirit and in times of joy.” Committees within this ministry include New Members, Communications and PR, Engagement, Parish Car, Fellowship, BeFrienders and the Dale Turner Legacy committee.
Stewardship and Finance Ministry
This is the ministry that keeps the building operating, the bills paid and the lights on. It includes the following: Personnel, Facilities and Equipment, Stewardship and Finance, Budget, Pledge, Investment and Audit Committees.
The Role of the Church Council
The Church Council provides oversight for the work of these five ministries. It is made up of the Church Officers, the Leadership Team and one representative from each ministry. For a list of current Church Council members, please see the Leadership section.
The Leadership Staff Parish Relations Committee nurtures our relationships
The Leadership Staff Parish Relations Committee (LPRC) was created to help maintain open healthy relationships between leadership staff and the congregation by listening to and addressing concerns of both congregation and leadership staff in a timely confidential manner. A Leadership Covenant exists between the congregation and the leadership staff to define expectations between and among us. Members of LPRC include leadership staff and the following:
Cara Gray Helmer (co-chair)
David Ovens (co-chair)
Church and Home — print versions
Submit an article for the Sunday Bulletin and/or the Weekly Update
The Sunday Bulletin
The purpose of the announcements section of the Sunday Bulletin is to inform worshipers of church events in the coming two weeks. It’s the place for special announcements on immediate concerns.
The deadline is noon Tuesday for the following Sunday. The best way to submit Bulletin copy is to email it to email@example.com. Or you can drop it off in the office.
Maximum length: two to three lines; longer items should go into Church and Home.
Be sure your name and phone number are on the copy for questions and/or verification.
Announcements submitted for the Sunday Bulletin will also appear in the Weekly Email.
- Should cover activities of the congregation in the coming two weeks.
- Items occurring further into the future should be included in Church and Home rather than the bulletin.
- Invite people to look at Narthex tables, web site or other communication vehicles, but do not include long or political announcements in the bulletin.
- Consider making appropriate references to the last issue of Church and Home as a place for more and wider info about the church. Links to relevant articles or pages on the church website are also appropriate.
- Submissions may be edited for space or content at the discretion of the editing staff, however, please don’t assume that the editor will review your submission for typos or other errors.
- Each announcement should be limited to a 2-3 sentence maximum.
- Program-related surveys or signups can be noted in the bulletin as announcements, with information available at a Narthex table or handed out.
Submit an article to Church and Home
Submitting Articles to Church and Home
Church and Home, published monthly, is provided in both digital and print format. It is the primary vehicle for information about UCUCC and its activities.
- The deadline for submissions is noon, the 15th of the month, for the issue dated the following month (e.g. the deadline for the June issue is May 15).
- Email your article to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Be sure your name and phone number are included in the email for questions/verifications.
- Please be concise! Items may be edited due to space considerations.
- Articles from boards about their activities are welcomed and encouraged.
- Articles from boards inviting members to consider a stance or action:
- Identify the church board that submitted the article and invites the stance.
- Invite an action/position rather than demanding or requiring it.
- Do not claim to speak for the church, but rather to its members.
- Do not call into question the Christian conviction of those with differing perspectives (ex: “we, as Christians…”) “I” statements are more appropriate.
- Inform readers of programs and priorities of UCUCC.
- Invite readers to consider a position, not demand a position or action.
- Invite readers to get further information.
- Fundraisers may be announced if the agency is sponsored by a board, otherwise generally not.
- Announcements for fundraisers for non-UCUCC affiliated agencies will generally not be included. Occasional exceptions are made for UCUCC affiliated agencies.
- Political announcements will not be included unless the Church Council or congregation has taken action to support the particular political perspective.
- No candidate endorsements.
- Announcements of a general church nature take precedence over wider-community announcements.
Sharing the Journey column
The focus of a “Sharing the Journey” column is the writer’s faith journey: how that faith has been challenged or strengthened by life or circumstances or events. This is meant to tie in with the covenant affirmed when new members join “to walk together…” The focus is on spiritual growth:
- 350 words max.; longer items may be edited at the discretion of the editor
- The writer will be notified if editing is necessary
- “Sharing the Journey” is not a soapbox for political or other perspectives, but a sharing of faith.
Archives—podcasts and sermon transcripts
Archives—podcasts and sermon transcripts
Every Sunday, the scripture reading and the sermon are recorded. After the service, this recording is uploaded to the website as a podcast. The most recent sermon podcast is available directly from the homepage. Recent sermons (up to six month’s worth) are available here. For podcasts of older sermons, click on the Soundcloud link.
Transcripts of sermons are available here. Our volunteer transcriber creates her work queue based on requests. Sermons are maintained on this site for about a year. To access transcripts for older sermons please email the office, or call 206-524-2322.
For those who choose to stay home, the Worship Bulletins will be posted on our website for the next few months.
Leadership Handbook - How to get things done
UCUCC Leadership Handbook
The Leadership Handbook, available in PDF Format, provides valuable information for lay people in positions of leadership in our church. It provides comprehensive instructions on how to accomplish many tasks that may be asked of lay leaders, including:
- Available office resources
- Devotional and check-in resources
- Event planning
- “Safer Church” policies and guidelines (how to maintain a safe, healthy environment for children and youth)
- Money Matters – handling money from sales and reservations, financial reports, check requests, fundraising
- Greening Guidelines – how to use our facility in ways that decrease our carbon footprint
- Publicity Guidelines – Bulletin announcements, website, posters, Church and Home, the Red Wall, the Church logo
- An event planning worksheet.
Report of the Futures Task Force, November 2019
The Report of the Futures Task Force, along with its Appendices, contains a richly detailed look at our church in terms of our dreams and beliefs, our demographics, and what we can see in our membership and attendance trends. We recommend reading the entire report to gain a basis for understanding decisions being made as we move forward together as a church community. The various sections of the report are listed below, with a description of their contents. You will find a link to a PDF of each section after its description.
Report of the Futures Task Force
This seven-page report provides an overview of the formation of the task force and summarizes its work in broad terms. It offers several “key takeaways” for the congregation to consider, as well as an overview of the task force’s observation about our current leadership team model.
Report of The Future Task Force
Appendix 1: Internal Identity Statement
The subgroup that formulated this internal identity statement begins its report with the statement, “We are a Christian church seeking to practice the inclusive transformational love of Christ Jesus.” In addition to providing more detail about our beliefs, the report also details our values, worship, our faith community, stewardship, Christian Education, the history of our public witness and church governance. It provides food for thought about who we are as a faith community and how our own sense of identity informs our actions.
Appendix 1 Identity Statement
Appendix 2: Research Subgroup Report
The Research Subgroup of the Futures Task Force defined our role and goal as helping to discern the religious and spiritual context that the church is operating in. We aimed to begin to understand the current place of mainline Christian congregations in urban settings and build a picture of what might lead to the continued health of our congregation and meaningful engagement with our community. One of their conclusions: The message is clear and consistent: change is afoot. We see that happening up close and personal in the changes among the churches within a few blocks of our building. And we see it to a lesser degree in the trends in our own membership, attendance and giving.
Appendix 2 Research Report
Appendix 3: Attendance and Membership Subgroup Report
This report examines the trends we have experienced with respect to the number of members, number of pledging units, average pledge size, total pledge amounts, and worship attendance, The group examined the characteristics of those who have become church members over the past five years, and examined how the use of our church facility has reflected our priorities and how our financial resources have been used to impact our local community and our wider world.
Appendix 3 Attendance And Membership
Appendix 4: Listening Subgroup Report
The priority of the Listening Subgroup was the ensure that everyone in the congregation had an opportunity to be heard. We used various tools to accomplish this: one-on-one interviews with 25 individuals using “Appreciative Inquiry” questions, group listening sessions with youth and the Love and Justice Ministry, and six sessions offered before and after worship, focusing on dreams for our future. We also sponsored a congregational survey that was completed by nearly 200 people.
Appendix 4 Listening Group Report
Appendix 5: Congregational Futures Survey Results
This survey was available to the congregation for about a month to complete online or using a paper survey. Responses from 198 respondents were analyzed. The survey asked details of attendance and pledging and included open-ended questions about what makes church important to them and what their experience with the Team Leadership Model has been.
Appendix 5 Futures Survey Results
Appendix 6: Overall Themes from Dreaming Sessions and Forums
Nearly 250 people participated in the dreaming sessions and forums sponsored by the Listening Subgroup. As the subgroup carefully recorded and analyzed what they heard, important themes and trends emerged.
Appendix 6 Dreams For Our Future
Appendix 7: Staffing Proposal
A staffing proposal was the subject of a special Church Council meeting on October 23, but was not adopted. Subsequently, a Staffing Proposal Committee was formed to consider the facts and opinions presented at this meeting and offer revisions based on additional background and work. The PDF below is the staffing proposal presented to Church Council on October 23.
Appendix 7 Staffing Proposal
Full Report with all appendices
Our Church History
History of University Congregational United Church of Christ
On March 8, 1891, eight people met to found the First Congregational Church of Brooklyn. located at 4125 Brooklyn Avenue. It was a “mission church,” founded by Plymouth Congregational Church in Downtown Seattle.
In 2016, we celebrated our 125th Anniversary. The intervening years encompass a rich history of an every-changing congregation united by their dedication to Christian values and social activism.
A Short Church History, available as a seven-page PDF, provides details of the church’s rich history.
A Centennial Booklet was produced by a team of volunteers in celebration of the 100th anniversary in 1991. It is available as a 91-page PDF document.
Our Facility - Weddings, Concerts, Receptions, Parking, Accessibility
Our Facility – Weddings, concerts and other events
Located in the heart of Seattle’s University District, our church facility serves both as our church home and as a tool for mission and outreach. The building includes a large sanctuary, a chapel and several social halls. For information on getting married in the church or renting any of the spaces described below, please email or call the office at 206-524-2322.
The sanctuary will seat 450 people on the main floor, plus 150 in the balcony. The center aisle is 90 feet long, with 18 rows of pews and a flexible area for disability seating. Generally, a gathering of approximately 250 guests will fill the front half of the sanctuary.
There is a pipe organ and a grand piano. Recent renovations have enhanced the hall’s acoustics and added a flexible modern sound system with multiple inputs, making it an excellent venue for concerts.
Harrington Memorial Chapel
The chapel will seat 75 – 80 people. The aisle is 35 feet long with eight rows of chairs that can provide flexible seating. The communion table is six feet wide. The chapel has a small pipe organ.
We support marriage equality for all couples, regardless of gender- or sexual-orientation. In addition to the spaces described above, there are appropriate reception areas available as well. We also offer the services of a wedding coordinator.
Parking and accessibility
Information about parking, evening access and building accessibility is available here.
Emergency Procedures Manual
The Emergency Procedures Manual is focused on addressing emergencies that may occur on Sunday mornings, such as medical emergencies, fires, or earthquakes. It seeks to ensure the personal safety of people in the building on Sunday mornings, from the time that the building is opened until the last person leaves, typically in the early afternoon.
Appendix A is a summary of the procedures. Appendix B has guidelines for events held at UCUCC by outside event organizers, such as concerts.
Using Zoom for the first time
Using Zoom for the first time
Operating during the Corona virus pandemic means that we can no longer meet face to face. Many of our meetings–even among two or three people–are conducted on Zoom. If you have not yet used Zoom, the following eight-minute video will take you through the process. Watch it more than once as you need to.
If you need additional help, or would like to do a trial Zoom meeting with a volunteer Zoom helper, please email: email@example.com.
Links to other organizations
University Congregational UCC is affiliated with the broader United Church of Christ denomination, which is located in Cleveland, Ohio.
We are also part of the Pacific Northwest Conference of the United Church of Christ.
Accessibility at UCUCC
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 at a table to the right of the main glass doors entering the Sanctuary, or ask any usher.
Visually Impaired: We offer each Sunday’s program in large print for easier readability.
Wheelchair Access: The front entry at the north end of the building is wheelchair accessible, as are the rest rooms. Please don’t hesitate to ask for assistance.