What is the U.C.C.? • The United Church of Christ (is an) American Protestant denomination formed in 1957 by a merger of the General Council of Congregational Christian Churches and the Evangelical and Reformed Church. • The constitution for the new body was adopted in July, 1961, thus completing the union.
What is the U.C.C.? • The statement of faith promulgated in 1959 maintains the non-creedal position common to both religious bodies, holding only to baptism and communion as sacraments, ordination as an act of laying on of hands, and local autonomy in all matters of worship, doctrine, and congregational life.
What is the U.C.C.? • A general synod of the whole church meets biennially and establishes the various agencies through which its social action, ecumenical work, and missionary work are carried out. • The church has about 1.4 million members (1997). • Source: "United Church of Christ." The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. 2007. Columbia University Press. 16 Mar. 2008 <http://www.bartleby.com/65/un/UntdChChr.html>.
In Their Own Words • Welcome to the United Church of Christ—a community of faith that seeks to respond to the Gospel of Jesus Christ in word and deed. • The UCC was founded in 1957 as the union of several different Christian traditions: from the beginning of our history, we were a church that affirmed the ideal that Christians did not always have to agree to live together in communion.
In Their Own Words • Our motto—"that they may all be one"—is Jesus' prayer for the unity of the church. • The UCC is one of the most diverse Christian churches in the United States.
In Their Own Words • The UCC tends to be a mostly progressive denomination that unabashedly engages heart and mind. • And yet, the UCC somehow manages to balance congregational autonomy with a strong commitment to unity among its nearly 6,000 congregations—despite wide differences among many local congregations on a variety of issues.
In Their Own Words • While preserving relevant portions of heritage and history dating back to the 16th century, the UCC and its forebears have proven themselves capable of moving forward, tying faith to social justice and shaping cutting edge theology and service in an ever-changing world.
In Their Own Words • Affirming that Jesus Christ is the Head of the Church, the UCC claims as its own the faith of the historic church expressed in the ancient creeds and reclaimed in the basic insights of the Protestant reformers. • Yet the UCC also affirms the responsibility of the church in each generation and community to make faith its own in reality of worship, in honesty of thought and expression, and in purity of heart before God.
In Their Own Words • It looks to the Word of God in the Scriptures, and to the presence and power of the Holy Spirit to prosper its creative and redemptive work in the world. • One of the UCC's distinguishing characteristics is its penchant to believe that ... God is still speaking, ... even when it puts us out there alone.
In Their Own Words • History has shown that, most often, we're only alone for a while. • Besides, we receive so many gifts from our ecumenical partners, being "early" seems to be one of ours. • Source: United Church of Christ Website. 16 Mar. 2008 < http://www.ucc.org/about-us/>.
2 Timothy 4:1-5, NASB95 I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths. But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.