United Church of Christ

‘It’s within our power to change the damn world’

“It is within our power — in this unexpected place at this unexpected time — to change the damn world,” the Rev. Dwayne D. Royster charged the capacity crowd at the General Synod Sunday community worship service at the Cleveland Convention Center.

Dorhauer address to delegates takes on issue of white privilege

The Rev. John C. Dorhauer grabbed the issue that has clouded his nomination as the next general minister and president of the United Church of Christ — that he is yet another straight white male — and wrestled it to the floor in his nomination speech Friday afternoon at the first business session of General Synod 2015 at the Cleveland Convention Center.

U.S. Supreme Court makes marriage equality law of the land

The General Synod of the United Church of Christ plans to celebrate marriage equality like never before-because now it can.

No Balaam's voicing uncomfortable truths at 2015 Synod

For the second time since its inception, there will be no Balaam's Courier to serve as an alternative voice for General Synod goers. Due to the deaths of Balaam's founder the Rev. Ted Braun on Feb. 23 and his wife, Donna, on March 4, Balaam's is on indefinite hiatus, and most likely will not return.

UCC environmental leaders laud Pope Francis' encyclical on climate change

In what United Church of Christ environmental activists are lauding "a milestone moment," Pope Francis stressed an urgency for protecting Planet Earth in his encyclical on climate change, titled Laudato Si or "Praised Be: On the Care of the Common Home." On June 28, the Rev. Meighan Pritchard, the UCC's minister for environmental justice, invites UCC congregations everywhere to ring their bells at noon local time to show their support for Laudato Si and its call to environmental action.

Commentary: Charleston violence, unspeakable grief

The Rev. Waltrina Middleton writes to share that her beloved first cousin was among the nine fatalities of a shooting in a South Carolina Church. "Her death was confirmed this morning, and the unspeakable grief of this loss has knocked me and my family off-kilter," Middleton shares a letter to friends and colleagues across the wider church.

UCC agrees to sale of national headquarters, will remain in Cleveland

In its continuous effort to bring in more financial resources to advance the mission and ministry of the United Church of Christ, the denomination’s leaders are signing a letter of intent today, June 10, to sell the national offices building and the adjoining hotel the church owns to a Georgia-based property management firm. The silver-lining in the agreement is that the UCC will continue to make downtown Cleveland its home by leasing the building back for another two decades.

Commentary: These Challenging Times

Recently it was reported that Chaplain Modder, who once ministered to Navy SEALs, could be thrown out of the military after he was accused of failing "to show tolerance and respect" during private counseling sessions regarding issues pertaining to faith, marriage and sexuality, specifically homosexuality and pre-marital sex. As a few ecclesiastical endorsers work to secure the availability of chaplains who are able and willing to serve to all service members, this display of intolerance is unacceptable.

Two UCC churches embrace members of multiple faiths

The theological discussion around the idea of multiple religious belonging, the concept of a person identifying with more than one faith, continues, and at an early point in the conversation there are many questions to be answered—such as what it means for Christianity. But the uncharted aspects of the topic aren’t slowing two United Church of Christ congregations from recognizing this growing trend. Embracing religious diversity is part of their cultures, extending their welcome to people of any faith.

Habakkuk Group makes progress toward new Manual on Ministry

The Habakkuk Group, the group charged with not just revising the current Manual on Ministry, but re-visioning it, finished three days of intensive discussion at the United Church of Christ national offices, laying the foundation and clarifying the ways in which ministers are authorized to serve the church.