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.

Intent and Impact: The Resilience to Love More Fully

Imagine that you are just moving around in your kitchen and you turn and step on someone’s toe. “Ouch! Ow, ow, ow!” they say.

What is your response?

“Oh, I’m so sorry. Are you OK? How can I help?”

Or is it “I didn’t know you were standing there.”

Or “You shouldn’t be standing so close to me.”

In the very simple example given here, your intent is not to step on the person’s toe, yet your impact is painful for that one standing close to you.

Intent. Impact.
Two parts of an interaction.

I have learned the hard way through relationship pain that these two indeed are related, but still distinct and that tracking both matters. It has been hard for me, I think, because I have too often wanted to focus on my intent too quickly. It is a common mistake for the initiator/sender to focus on their intent (“I didn’t mean to…”) while the other person is experiencing pain and could benefit from timely care. Explanation or, at worst, defense or attack (“You shouldn’t be standing there!”) do not help the person in pain. It often makes the pain worse.

Life and its interactions are often more complex than the example given, yet the principles remain: intent and impact.

Many of those who care about racial equity and have studied racism would say the same. In her book, White Fragility: Why It’s so Hard for White People to Talk about Racism, Robin DiAngelo talks about how the most daily damage to people of color actually comes from white progressives because, in significant part, they claim that they didn’t intend racism.  Progressives too often think they have got it and that racism consists of individual, conscious acts and bad actors (like those marching in Charlottesville or somewhere or some-when else).

Given what we know from history, from histories hidden and neglected, and from the research on implicit bias, what if we changed the sample interaction to someone wearing boots (systemic power) and a blindfold in the kitchen (unconscious bias) who then steps on the toe of someone with no shoes on (lack of systemic power) and a history of profound toe injuries (historical context).  The person stepping on the toe would still be able to say “I didn’t mean it” or even “You shouldn’t be standing there” and yet the pain would be profound and the would not be receiving care for the injury. Proclaiming innocence of intent gets in the way of helping the injured.

In Ephesians, the author (likely a disciple of Paul) says,

“For our struggle is not against enemies of blood and flesh, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”

The biblical language suggests an intimate wrestling in this struggle. I include my own unconscious in that intimacy. In my spiritual life, I consider the call of Christ to include looking within to what I don’t see (blindfold) in myself and my culture (white culture) for all that gets in the way of loving more fully.

DiAngelo’s book beautifully challenges me, as a white person of faith, to be more resilient when I hear the pain of people of color so that I just don’t go to my conscious intent (“I didn’t mean it” “I’m not racist”).

Instead I sense a call to go to focus on the person impacted and their expereince, to look at how I am moving in the world and where the others are standing. What pain might the person of color be experiencing (historical context)? What am I unconscious of here (blindfold)? What power is being exerted (boots)?