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 here 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.

Last night as I was trying to put the sheep up for the evening, they began acting strange. Now I will admit that sometimes it is hard to tell if sheep are acting strange. Such an observation requires that one know what is “normal” for a sheep. And though I have been a keeper of sheep for almost twenty years, I still hesitate to assert that I know “normal.”

But last night, the sheep kept heading toward the barn, looking in, and then circling away. When a few finally stepped through the dark, open doorway, it was only a few seconds before they came running back out, kicking their heels up and stampeding away as if they were wild horses who had discovered a trap. this circling and running away happened so many times that I finally decided to go into the barn myself to see if I could tell what was going on.

The sheep were down by the gate that leads out to the road, about as far as they could get from the barn, as I cautiously walked up to the barn door. One of my suspicions was that perhaps there were bees or even wasps in there. But as I peered into the darkness all I saw were three ewes, with their lambs curled by their sides, lying there and gazing calmly back at me. The moms and their babies had apparently retired early, before the rest of the flock had headed toward the barn. I do love the way that the lambs snuggle up to their moms at night, even if they have been off playing on their own all day. As I looked at the peaceful scene I realized I was still listening for buzzing. It took me a minute to change my thinking about the bees. Of course if there was an angry swarm in the barn, those three ewes and their babies would have run out with the rest of the flock. I relaxed.

Then it occurred to me that perhaps the rest of the ewes were running from the peaceful scene itself. Maybe as they moved from the outside light to the inside dark what they saw were dark hulking shadows that seemed to be waiting there to do them harm.

I know this is the kind of moment that leads people to assume that sheep are dumb. But I have always argued that sheep are actually quite intelligent. In fact, research seems to indicate that sheep are able to recognize familiar faces, both human and sheep, and can make basic mental maps of their surroundings. People in the time of Jesus knew that sheep could distinguish vocal patterns and recognize familiar voices. Jesus’ observation in John 10 that “The sheep recognize the shepherd’s voice, and will not follow the voice of a stranger,” has been great sermon fodder for centuries. I am certain many of my colleagues preached about that just a few weeks ago when that text came up in the lectionary.

So I will give my sheep credit for noticing that something seemed different in the barn, and for being nervous about it. I, on the other hand, can be so oblivious to “something different” that when something in our worship service changes, and the change is right there in the bulletin in front of me, I still go on leading as if nothing has changed, and confuse my whole congregation in the process (This is an acknowledgement of skipping the “Passing of the Peace” a few weeks back when it was moved to a different place in our order of worship).

In the end, I couldn’t get the outside sheep to go into the barn by myself. I finally had to enlist the help of my dog Lefty. One look at him and even the most reluctant of the flock scampered into the barn and stayed there.

But isn’t it interesting that it was sheep from their own flock that they didn’t recognize? Isn’t it interesting that it was sheep that were scaring sheep?

In my human world, of course, the same thing can happen. There are shadows in the barn, and I run away in fear. I fail to recognize the humanity of others. I mistake something “different” for something “wrong.”  The John 10 sheep parable that suggests that the sheep recognize the voice of the Good Shepherd continues on. It also suggests that there are “other sheep, not of this fold” who know God’s voice, and God’s love, and that the final vision of God’s heart is that “there will be one flock and one shepherd.” My work is to look further into the what seems so unfamiliar, and recognize the outline of my kin.