Open & Affirming,
Progressive Christian Church
There is ample parking. For most Sunday Services, the first option is to park in our church parking lot which is entered from the Danials Street entrance. These parking spaces are rented out during the work week, but every spot in the parking lot is available to visitors on Sundays. Additional parking is available along the street on both Sixth and Danials as parking meters are not enforced on Sunday. Finally there are University of Illinois Parking structures on both the South and West sides of our property. These are available for general parking without charge on Sundays.
Traveling by car, arrive either traveling South on Sixth street or East on Danials street. Most MTD buses through campus stop at the Union, and we are just a four block walk from the Union.
We are located on campus and boast about the fact that eight campus buildings are named for former members of our congregation. Many of our members are employed by the University in capacities that range from professor to typist. We host a student foundation which has the intent of ministering to the campus community . Each of these elements contributes to the atmosphere of the congregation. But we consider ourselves a community church that happens to be very comfortably located on campus.
In common with most protestant churches, Sunday worship is likely to include several congregational hymns, congregational participation in reading aloud a reflection on the season (we call this a responsive reading), reading of scripture, an anthem by our excellent choir, a children’s moment, and a sermon. It is not our tradition to do anything that would single out a particular person without their advance agreement and preparation. Services always are shaped to reflect the part of the church calendar in which they fall. Its quite possible to arrive on Christmas day and find we are having birthday cake to celebrate Jesus’s birthday, or to arrive in July and find we have moved the service to a local park.
The United Church of Christ has a tradition of radical welcome to all. Many UCC congregations have felt that its appropriate to specify that Gay and Lesbian persons are indeed included in this welcome. A UCC congregation that identifies itself as Open to persons irrespective of their gender or sexual identification, and Affirming the understanding that all are created in the Image of God will post this identification on their website (as we do). To be Open and Affirming means that we are resolved that every aspect of our congregational life will be equally appropriate to persons who identify as gay, lesbian, or transgender, and to their children.
As a denomination, the UCC has been opposed to wars that are intended to extend political control or economic advantage to one country at the expense of a weaker country. But we are not pacifists. We have acknowledged that there were seasons where armed might to defend against aggressor nations has been essential. We wish our emphasis to be on the dynamic of peace which is supported by justice rather than peace that is enforced by external powers.
You can get your prayer concern to our pastor via her email (Leah Robberts-Mosser firstname.lastname@example.org) , or by phoning the church office and leaving your prayer concern in her confidential voice mailbox (344-5091), or by placing a folded note in the worship service plates with a note that it intended for the pastor. Be sure you include information that the pastor will need to get back to you about this prayer concern.
Children are welcome at UCC, and we try always to welcome them on their own terms. Children may always remain with their parents in the pew during the service, or with their parents assent to sit at the craft and coloring tables in the rear of the sanctuary during the service. Nursery is available for small children during the service and during all social events of the congregation held at the church. Sunday School is open to children of elementary school age during the service (children leave with their teachers after the children’s moment). and the conference maintains two outdoor campsites with children camp sessions all Summer. The Sunday school curriculum is thoughtfully designed to support our intent to be open to all. Minister of youth and family ministry would be glad to discuss both the Sunday School Curriculum and the Safe Kids policy with any interested parent.
College students are always welcome to just walk in the door and be part of the congregation. Many college students from both the U of I and from Parkland choose to also be involved in the Student Foundation Program which hosted in our building but is served by the Reverend Karen Bush. To connect with this group, email The Rev Karen Bush email@example.com or follow the links on this website to the Foundation web site.
Of course your interest in becoming a member is very welcome. Most people who consider membership have first attended services and even been involved in some of the work and mission events of the church so that they have seen this congregation in many different lights . There is no theological “litmus test” for membership. Our tradition holds that individual conscience is always the highest moral authority in interpretation of the good news of the gospel – although that individual conscience is guided and informed by the experience of those who have gone before us. Several times a year the pastor will announce Class for Newcomers as a way of talking about all the sorts of questions a person might want answered before deciding to officially join a congregation. There is no obligation to join and we enjoy the company of many people who continue as “friends” for years when there may be some sort of obstacle to becoming a member. Persons who do wish to become members are assigned a sponsor – ie an established member who is likely to have a lot in common with the incoming members. The sponsor’s task is to be sure that an incoming member feels connected and supported during those early and sometimes awkward moments of involvement in an organization.
The sanctuary is frequently rented by non-church members for weddings and because of its tremendously live acoustics, for musical events. The downstairs social hall is supported by a modern kitchen which is inspected and approved by the Department of Health for catering. A request for rental should be forwarded to the church office manager Community United Church <firstname.lastname@example.org>, or by mail directed to Office Manager CUCC 805 S Sixth Street, Champaign, IL 61820. Persons who wish to have a wedding with either Rev Leah Robberts-Mosser or Rev Karen Bush presiding would contact the pastor directly.
See our rent our facilities page for more details.