First Congregational ChurchOf Bellingham

An open and affirming congregation of the United Church of Christ – 10 am Sunday Service

“The world we live in is both beautiful and bewildering, simultaneously heart-breaking and life-affirming. We ask ourselves: How do we daily witness this brokenness and still walk with joy, adding our light and our love as all faith traditions teach us we must? “
I’ve noticed that the way this church accepts and encourages individuality has helped me become more understanding and accepting of other people, as well as become more comfortable with who I am as a result of the experiences I’ve had here.”
 

Krista HunterKrista Hunter — An unlikely Christian I am in a way an unlikely Christian. Not brought up in the church, I was not nurtured in its traditions, and the Bible did not give up its wisdom to me until later in life when literature opened me to the beauty of its language.  In truth, my spiritual journey has been like that of a vagabond wandering through the faith traditions but never settling down. When God found me, it was often in solitary sojourns in the high desert where holiness took flight in sandhill cranes and glossy ibis. Just the sweet smell of sage after the rain seemed like heaven. (More)

Allegra RitchieAllegra Ritchie, one teen’s perspective

(From a testimonial at 10:00 worship)

Originally my dad was supposed to be up here with me, but he’s now Michigan to be with his parents. As we talked about what this church means to each of us, the conversation flowed between what it is like to be in this space, and to encounter the spirit of this place out in the broader community. I’ve noticed that the way this church accepts and encourages individuality has helped me become more understanding and accepting of other people, as well as become more comfortable with who I am as a result of the experiences I’ve had here. (More)

Constance Collier — a skeptic and a seeker

I was raised in the Episcopal Church and then I married a Scots Presbyterian.  We attended another church until we discovered this perfect haven. I have many reasons to love First Congregational. One is the professionalism of its music. I also love the fact that I have so many close friends who attend with me each Sunday. But the main reason I love this church is because whoever I am and wherever I am on life’s journey I am welcome here.  Why wouldn’t I be you ask?  The answer is that I am a skeptic and a seeker and this church is full of people with open minds and open hearts. (More)

Ross Chaney — laughing, singing, thinking, loving

Why do I come to First Congregational Church? I can’t point to a specific sermon, or song or person and say, “See that? Right there? That’s why we came. That’s why we stayed.”  First, because my brain just doesn’t seem to work that way and second, because it’s all of those things, and a great many more, working in combination that make this place my family’s church home. (More)

Diana Jacobs, a grateful mother
From a 10:00 service on Mother’s Day

I would like to acknowledge some of the mothers and grandmothers in this congregation who have reached out to my boys and I to make us feel at home here. I started coming to this church about 10 years ago when I moved to Bellingham.  Originally, I visited this church with my sister and her husband and their three boys.  Soon after moving here, I had my first son, and 18 months later, I had another son. For some women, motherhood comes easily, and they make it look easy.  For me, it was a hard transition, and I had to work hard at it.  Even though I fell in love with my boys with a love greater than anything I had ever known or could have even imagined was possible, still, I felt completely overwhelmed and anxious as a new mother. (More)