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.

Right now, during the pandemic, we are still united as church. Our service is streamed on YouTube and Facebook. You will find the links just below this section on our home page. New services are offered weekly at 10 am on Sundays, and are available on line after that.

We strive to walk in the path of Jesus, and to offer an authentic welcome to everyone who walks through our door. If you are new to us, we would love to get to know you and answer your questions about our church, even though we cannot greet you in person. A member of our Welcome Committee, or a pastor, would be happy to correspond on email or talk with you on the phone. Click here to arrange for a “meeting.”

Our worship service starts at 10 am and includes hymns, prayers, scripture reading and a sermon. It usually lasts about an hour. Right now we are worshiping online and will adjust this message once we are able to meet together in our sanctuary once again.  More information here.

Children are an important part of our community, and are welcome for all or part or the service. 

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.

During this pandemic, we have discontinued our in-person lunches. We would love to meet with you via email or phone, however. Click here to arrange a meeting with a Welcome Committee Volunteer or pastor.

We can explore and explain a range of topics about our church, from history, to theology, to membership. Please contact us at the link above for more information.

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.

Our programs for children and youth continue during this pandemic. Sign up at the bottom of the home page to receive our Children's Ministries and/or Youth Ministries newsletter.

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.

Taken by Cat Gipe-Stewart at Cape Lookout State Park

Sometimes it is good to look up. In addition to everything I have been paying attention to on this planet, I have also spent the last few weeks scanning the heavens. Each clear night I have been trekking outside to gaze into the darkening northwestern sky along with countless others from across the northern hemisphere. We are watching for the comet NEOWISE. The first time I went out was actually in the early morning of July 14th. I had heard the comet would be visible from about 4 a.m. until about 4:15. So I set my alarm for 3:30 and when it jangled me out of my sleep I got dressed and headed down to the ferry dock where I would have a clear view north to watch for it. I stood out there looking, not really knowing where to look or what the comet itself might actually look like. I never saw it. Finally at about 4:30, disappointed and sure I had missed the comet for good, I headed home and back to bed.

Later that day Paul, a member of my congregation, posted a picture of the comet his son had taken. He added the advice that the comet could be seen that evening and folks might want to take advantage of that opportunity to see the comet themselves.

Can you spot the comet in this picture of the skie over Seattle taken by Paul Schafer?

“Of course!” I said to myself. “I can ask for help. And Paul knows stuff!” So I called and Paul sent me his best advice about how to see NEOWISE.

“Find a dark sky and a clear view off to the northwest. Once the stars come out, look for the Big Dipper. You’ll see the comet just below it.”

So that night my housemate Meighan and I headed to Sandy Point, below the little town of Langley, about five miles from my farm, where I knew we would have dark skies and a clear view across the water. I watched as the sun set. Like I had in the morning, I scanned the skies. I looked. And looked. And looked.

After about an hour, as the stars appeared I still couldn’t see anything that looked like a comet. And neither could Meighan. Then, just when I was sure I would once again be disappointed, I got a text from Paul, in Seattle. “I see it!” Thank you Paul. He texted more directions, and with his encouragement, I looked again.

A woman Meighan and I didn’t know, who had come out to that lonely road to watch too, said, “Is that it?” I turned the direction she was pointing and there is was. A kind of silver smudge across the sky. I looked through the smallish binoculars I had brought and the comet came into focus. It looked like it was diving toward the earth. And it was spectacular.

NEOWISE in the skies of Oregon, taken by Carter Shafer

After watching for another half hour I headed back to the farm. When I got home I stood in my lower field and looked into the sky again. And since I knew right where to look, I realized that I could still see the comet. From my own field. Right outside my door.

It is something to stand in my sheep pasture on Whidbey Island and gaze into the vastness of the heavens to watch a three mile wide ball of slushy ice streak away from the sun on its journey to the farthest edge of the universe. They say it won’t be back for about six thousand eight hundred years. Which makes me feel young and very old all at the same time.

Through the ages, comets have been seen to be portents of change. More often then not, they are linked to bad news. And yet, perspective can make all the difference. King Harold and English astronomers of 1066 saw the appearance of Halley’s Comet as a warning that predicted their defeat at the Battle of Hastings. But for William the Conqueror and his army the night sky announced victory. And centuries later, that same comet is said to have announced both the birth and the death of Mark Twain within the span of about 75 years.

And now we have NEOWISE. Named for the satellite telescope and an acronym for the Near-Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (don’t you wonder how long it took to come up with that one?) it also evokes a sense of New Wisdom.

Since my first sighting of the comet I have found myself walking out to my field every night looking for it. The skies have been cloudy these last few nights but I am hoping for another clear view of the comet before it fades. There are supposed to be a few more days of visibility, and then the moon will become too bright for us to see it. Somehow, as I look up, I feel connected to something bigger than myself in this brief moment of time.

I wonder what future folks will say about a comet appearing at this time in human history? My prayer is that they will look back in gratitude at the new wisdom, the new way of being, to which this season led us. If that is to be so, we all have a lot of work to do, right here, right now, on earth. So I will turn my eyes from the skies and roll up my sleeves. May this sign in the heavens reinforce our call to work for justice in this moment.

In theological terms, I lift up the UCC slogan, “God is still speaking.” And I add a slight edited version of Gracie Allen’s profound insight, from which the title of this blog is taken. “Never put a period where God has put a comet.”

NEOWISE over Whidbey Island, taken by David Schoen