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. We strive to walk in the path of Jesus, and to offer an authentic welcome to everyone who walks through our door. We invite visitors to wear a name-tag from the pew register folder so we may more easily greet you by name.

Our worship service starts at 10 am and includes hymns, prayers, scripture reading and a sermon. It usually lasts about an hour and 15 minutes. More information here.

Children are an important part of our community, and are welcome for all or part or the service. You will be met at the door with a warm handshake and welcome, and our friendly greeters can help direct you and answer your questions.

Wear clothes that you are comfortable in and sit on the main floor or in the balcony - wherever you feel most at ease. We look forward to welcoming you.

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.

We offer a complimentary "inquirers Lunch" on the second Sunday of the month for people interested in learning more about us. It is an informal session over soup, salad and dessert where you can meet others who may be on a similar spiritual journey and learn how to plug into this church community from long-term members and clergy.

We'll explore topics from history, to theology, to membership. To RSVP, or let us know about special needs (Including childcare or food sensitivities) email us at inquirers@universityucc.org or call 206-979-7539.

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.

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.

“I’ve tried meditation once, but I just can’t do it! My mind is way too busy,” said the first woman.

“Yes,” agreed the second woman. “It’s impossible for me too.”

I looked at them across the table. “Well, they don’t call it meditation practice for nothing,” I said. These were two very smart, goal oriented women and maybe that was their problem. They didn’t realize there is really no destination—it’s all about the journey.

“Then there’s the pain,” the first woman said. “I can’t bear just sitting there.”

Ah, yes—the pain. I learned about the pain when my husband Wes and I went on a three-day silent meditation retreat. It was at a Buddhist retreat center. The schedule was this: up at 6:15 a.m., 45 minutes of sitting meditation, 30 minutes of walking meditation, 45 sitting, 30 walking, meal. It went on like this until 9 o’clock at night.

Wes sat in a chair (as did other people), but I chose to sit cross-legged on a meditation pillow and then switch off and sit on my meditation bench. I was a real meditator! Besides, I sat heel-in-front-of-heel all the time in yoga, no big deal. However I have never sat like that for forty-five minutes. After fifteen minutes my ankles and knees were screaming.

Thank God I brought the meditation bench! But that traitorous piece of spiritual furniture made me feel as if someone had driven a granite boulder into my splintering sit-bones. By the end of the second night, I was wondering about the distance to the closest ER. Would my health insurance cover it? So for the last sitting meditation of the night, I decided on a chair.

They were those ubiquitous green plastic lawn chairs that cost about twelve cents to manufacture. I was a little late getting in and everyone was in place so I quickly grabbed one and sat down in the back.

Instant nirvana. It was like sitting in the lap of a lover; like sitting in a hot fragrant bath; like sitting on a heavenly throne. Why had I been torturing myself for two days? Why this was the most comfortable chair in which I had ever sat! I felt embraced by the chair, loved by the chair. I felt—if you will—chairished.

We were supposed to be doing vipassana meditation which is being in the present moment and simply watching your thoughts arise. Here were my thoughts:

I love this chair.

I want one of these chairs.

Could I could put it in the living room?

I would meditate every day if I had one of these chairs.

I wonder if they have them at Fred Meyer?

You can see this was not keeping me in the present moment. So I decided to do metta meditation which is “loving kindness.” You think of someone and then send them unconditional love.

May you be peaceful and happy.

May you be safe and protected.

May you be strong and healthy.

May you live with ease and joy.

So I started with that, praying for myself first, which is what you are supposed to do. I couldn’t help thinking how peaceful and happy I’d be if I had one of these chairs.

Stop thinking about the chair! And then I remembered, “What you resist, persists!” So I did metta for the chair.

May you be peaceful and happy. You would be in my house.

May you be safe and protected. I would never leave you out in the rain.

May you be healthy and strong. May you never break a leg or your back or your seat!

May you live with ease and joy. I would give you your own little corner.

I couldn’t stop. At the end of the sit I realized that it was my physical pain that kept me in the present moment. For the rest of the retreat I was either on my pillow or on my bench. Anguished, but focused.

Enlightenment eluded me that weekend. And I’ve never found those chairs. But it’s caused me to think that perhaps the pain in our lives is what helps us focus, reminds us we’re alive, makes us pay attention. I’m not a fan of pain just for pain’s sake. But if we have pain in our lives—physical, emotional, spiritual—let’s see if we can sit with it and find any value in it. And if we can’t, maybe it’s time for a chair.