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 gro.ccuytisrevinu@sreriuqni 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.

Whether fluffy, frozen, falling, flowing, or just filling up lakes and channels, the amount of water here in the Puget Sound Northwest is impressive to a Coloradan like myself. And the first two weeks of February deepened that sense as I was literally living on water, floating on cedar logs supporting a platform on which a house sits (No, you don’t feel the house rocking).

So with Lake Union underfoot and visible all around, I found myself imagining life below the surface, being reminded of an old story where an elder fish passes by two young fish and says, “Hey, how’s the water today?”  A few moments later one of the young fish turns to the other and says, “What the heck is water?”

Many have heard this or another version of the metaphor.

The point is simple and profound: there are realities that are so deeply implicit and pervasive as to be beyond our conscious awareness. Now I’m grateful for the kind of unconsciousness that keeps us breathing and our body’s organs functioning when we are not conscious of it, but this kind of unconsciousness (un-awareness) limits us since that means we are not really in touch with what is really, fully real and true. We remain limited in love for God, neighbor, and self if we can only say ‘What the heck is water?’ Remaining unconscious to the invisible watery matrix means we cannot change the matrix nor compensate for its substance and its currents.

We can be like that young unaware fish in several ways. It happens to us inside of our own psyche/souls when we are not self-aware of a deep pattern or hidden functioning truth of our inner life. It happens in our family systems when hidden dynamics and invisible stories drive family members to interact and behave a certain way. For example, on a men’s rite of passage retreat a couple years ago, I had a realization that deep inside of me was a painful hidden operating truth (from psyche and family system) that had been driving many of my life’s relationship choices: You’ll only love me if I do what you want. Eureka! The water! Becoming aware enough to articulate this hidden truth allowed me to know the inner sea in which I was swimming, but not quite fully aware of. That realization has helped me to move differently, to love myself and others differently, even to allow God’s Love to come to me differently outside those terms.

Not seeing the water happens in the cultural milieu as well with all sorts of systemic assumptions and biases that are hidden to most. For example, anytime the system implicitly assumes a given norm or ideal, we together are fish not aware of water. Sometimes we do it in relation to the ideal human (usually male, white, straight, able-bodied). Remember the old band-aids that were labeled ‘flesh-colored,” but were really an imitation of northern European descent human skin color (certain white people)? We unconsciously normalized and idealized one kind of human skin.

It happens when someone mentions to me an unknown physician or professor or politician and I realize that, without consciously choosing it, I feel a small surprise, a correction to my internal default image, when I find out that this person is not white or male. Even though I consider myself a progressive, justice-seeking person supporting equality and open to opportunities for all in principle, I discover an old habit, an old way implicitly programmed into my imagination. That’s when I get it. I am a fish in the invisible waters of assumption, the implicit norms and ideals and biases that lead to unconscious racism or sexism or whatever-ism.

When Jesus said that ‘the Truth shall set you free,’ I believe that this coming to awareness is part of realizing the Truth that leads to freedom.

When we grow our awareness of our hidden depths of psyche and culture, that new consciousness of what was invisible and implicit opens a way to a change of mind and direction (metanoia or repentance). Our communal psycho-spiritual calling as a Body of Christ and as followers of the Way is to grow from being the young fish saying, “What the heck is water?” to being the elder fish aware enough to ask, “How is the water?”

May our life of worship, of study, of connecting, and of service always lead us to becoming elder fish who are aware of the waters of life in which we swim.