We designed our new building — on our historic site in downtown Washington — to be a place of extravagant welcome to all within the context of our long-standing tradition of advocating for the acceptance of, and civil rights for, everyone without regard to age, ability, racial, cultural, or faith background, sexual orientation and gender identity.  We make our meeting and event spaces available at reasonable rates.  It is our desire to use our building to build community amongst the diverse population of the metropolitan area.  The building was designed without embedding permanent religious symbols in order that those coming to the building for secular events or events of other faith groups would find a place of welcome and affirmation.

Narthex (or lobby). ©david betts. metropolitan photography.

Narthex (or lobby).
©david betts. metropolitan photography.

Main entrance. Narthex (or lobby). ©david betts. metropolitan photography.

Main entrance.
Narthex (or lobby).
©david betts. metropolitan photography.

When you come through the main entrance at the corner of 10th and G Streets, N.W., you enter the narthex (or lobby) which functions as a gathering space before and after events in the sanctuary and is well-suited for receptions.  From the narthex, through grand, ceremonial doors you enter the sanctuary which can be used for a wide variety of worship, performance, and lecture events.  Totalling 4,850 square feet and with a combination of flexible and structured seating, the sanctuary seats up to 325 people (main floor and balcony). Audio visual capabilities in the sanctuary include a drop down screen, ceiling mounted projector, ten wired microphone jacks, six wireless microphones (three lavalier or Countryman and three handheld), CD player, Blueray, iPod dock, PC input and assisted listening devices.  In addition, the sanctuary stage lighting was recently upgraded to all LED fixtures that give a multitude of options for color, gobos, and remote focusing.

A view of the sanctuary/hall from the stage. ©david betts. metropolitan photographytts. metropolitan photography

A view of the sanctuary/hall from the stage.
©david betts. metropolitan photographytts. metropolitan photography

We are grateful that the effort and expense that we made to create a sanctuary/hall with great acoustics has paid off.  The New Orchestra of Washington has selected our sanctuary as their new performance venue.  We have also been selected to host performances and recording sessions by groups such as Thomas Circle Singers, Washington International Chorus, Horman Violin Studio, Artworks for Freedom, Pallas Theatre Collective and others.

If you’d like to see what’s coming up in our space — and what we’ve already hosted — check it out here.

Lving room. Narthex (or lobby). ©david betts. metropolitan photography.

Lving room.
Narthex (or lobby).
©david betts. metropolitan photography.

Also on the ground floor is a more informal space we call the living room which can accommodate smaller meetings of up to twenty people with casual furniture.  This room is frequently used as a green room to support concerts and lectures in the sanctuary.  The living room AV system boasts a 50″ flat-screen TV, CD player, Blueray, iPod dock, PC input and assisted listening devices.

Community Hall. Narthex (or lobby). ©david betts. metropolitan photography.

Community Hall.
Narthex (or lobby).
©david betts. metropolitan photography.

Proceed up the stone staircase and you arrive on the second floor landing which serves as pre-function space for the community hall and the chapel/meeting room.  The community hall measures 1,800 square feet and seats up to 130 for a lecture, 104 for a sit-down dinner, or 200 for a reception. The hall’s AV capabilities include a drop down screen, ceiling mounted projector, four wired microphone jacks, two wireless microphones (lavalier, Countryman or handheld), CD player, Blueray, iPod dock, PC input and assisted listening devices. Adjacent to the hall is a 400 square foot catering kitchen with refrigerator, freezer, dishwasher, stove and oven, microwave and coffee brewing system.

Chapel/Meeting Room. Narthex (or lobby). ©david betts. metropolitan photography.

Chapel/Meeting Room.
Narthex (or lobby).
©david betts. metropolitan photography.

Across the landing from the community hall is the 600 square foot chapel/meeting room seats up to forty in a theater-style configuration or twenty in a boardroom configuration.  This room also has an AV system with iPod dock, two microphones, and assisted listening devices.

945 G Street map croppedFor more information about use of our space, rates and to arrange a visit, contact our Building Manager, Byron Adams, at  202-628-4317, or email badams@FirstUCCDC.org .  He’ll work with you to facilitate your review of the space and finalization of arrangements.  We are located at the corner of 10th & G Streets, N.W. — where we have been since shortly after our founding in 1865 by abolitionists — just a short walk from the Metro Center and Gallery Place Metro stations.  Please note that requests to use space outside of our regular building hours (Monday through Friday, 9:00 am – 4:30 pm) necessitate special arrangements.  If such requests are received less than fourteen calendar days in advance, we are not likely to be able to accommodate them (except for funerals and memorial services).

Marriage Equality Ministry

In keeping with our long legacy of social justice and inclusivity, First Congregational United Church of Christ – DC rejoices in the U.S. Supreme Court’s marriage equality ruling!

We were glad to provide free chapel space for the last few years to same-sex couples who were unable to legally marry in their home jurisdictions and now we’re happy that couples can marry close to home, family, and friends.   .

But if you’d like to rent our chapel or sanctuary for your wedding, please contact Byron Adams badams@FirstUCCDC.org for additional information or to check availability.

Are you interested in having an event at First Congregational United Church of Christ?

Please follow the process below.  Please note that requests to use space outside of our regular building hours (Monday through Friday, 9:00 am – 4:30 pm) necessitate special arrangements.  If such requests are received less than fourteen calendar days in advance, we are not likely to be able to accommodate them (except for funerals and memorial services).

1. Read the Building Use Policies.

Please read the policy documents below appropriate to your intended use — you will be required to sign a contract acknowledging that you have agreed to abide by these policies.

2. Find out if space is available on your preferred date(s).

Email or call our Building Manager, Byron Adams, to find out if space is available.  His email address is badams@firstuccdc.org.  Or he can be reached at (202) 628-4317 on Tuesdays through Fridays from 9:00 am until 4:30 pm.  Please tell him the type of event you wish to hold, the number of people you expect to be in attendance, and the hours and date you wish to hold the event.  He will let you know if space is available and an approximate fee for using the space.

3. Fill out the Event Space Request Form once your event has been cleared on the church calender.  Please open the form, and email it to Building Manager Byron Adams at badams@firstuccdc.org.

4. The Building Manager will double check the details of your event and send you an invoice for your useage.  Once we have received your booking deposit (25% of your usage fee or $100, whichever is greater), your event will be placed on our calendar.  The balance of the usage fee plus a security deposit against any damage or extra hours will be due fourteen calendar days prior to your event.

To schedule space for a church-related event or program, please use the Church Event Space Request Form.

To report a maintenance issue in the building, please use the First Church Fix-It Request.

 

Upcoming Events

Affordable Housing Nurture, April 30affordable housing Two Housing Professionals in Our Congregation Share Their Expertise.  Please join us for this nurture as we learn about current efforts to confront the affordable housing crisis in Washington, recognized as one of the least affordable cities to live in the nation.  Many First Church members are nationally-recognized leaders in their fields.  Join us to learn from two of those leaders about their groundbreaking work in the difficult field of affordable housing, particularly their work in DC.Read more...

Past Events

Theology Reading Group: February 28, 6:30 PMPowers that BeThe Powers That Be:  Theology for a New Millenium, by Walter Wink,  reclaims the divine realm as central to human existence by offering new ways of understanding our world in theological terms.  Walter Wink reformulates ancient concepts, such as God and the devil, heaven and hell, angels and demons, principalities and powers, in light of our modern experience.  He helps us see heaven and hell, sin and salvation, and the powers that shape our lives as tangible parts of our day-to-day experience, rather than as mysterious phantoms.Read more...
Pottery Sale, December 8-11potters-for-peace Potters for Peace is a US-based non-profit that works in two clay-related fields:  working with subsistence potters in Central America and working throughout the world to assist with the establishment of factories that produce ceramic water filters.  Last year we raised $5,695.  Please help us go even higher this year!  The sale will feature a selection of pottery from Nicaraguan potters as well as work donated by potters in the DC area.  Please mark your calendars and be sure to do some of your holiday shopping at the sale.Read more...
Young Adult Holiday Walkholiday-treeYoung Adult: Holiday Walk in the Neighborhood.  Thursday, December 1, meeting at First Church at 6 PM.  Please join us for a holiday stroll through the neighborhood!  We will enjoy good fellowship and adventures that may take us to President Obama’s final lighting of the Christmas Tree, the Holiday Market, the Sculpture Garden Ice Skating Rink, or other places of joy!  We hope you can make it.  Please contact Sam if you have any questions:  mcferran.sam@gmail.com.Read more...
Weekend of Multi-Cultural Music, October 28-30multi-cultural-music A Weekend of Multicultural Music.  It is our great pleasure  to welcome C. Michael Hawn to First Church, DC for a rousing and wonderful weekend of global music and worship.  Michael is a Professor of Music and Director of the Masters of Sacred Music Program at Perkins Theological Seminary in Dallas, Texas.   He is one of the leading consultants in global music and worship in the US today, an expert in cross-cultural worship and enlivening congregational song.Read more...
Theology Reading Group, July 26Buddha Tuesday July 26, 6:30 PM.  Without Buddha I Could Not Be a Christian, by Paul F. Knitter.  Please join us as we read this fascinating book by a theologian (and former Catholic priest) who spent many years exploring Buddhism.  This book describes how Knitter’s investigation of Buddhism deepened his understanding of his own Christian faith.  Knitter argues that a Buddhist standpoint can help inspire a more person-centered conception of Christianity, where individual religious experience comes first, and liturgy and tradition second.  Paul Knitter is the Paul Tillich Emeritus Professor of Theology, World Religions, and Culture at Union Theological Seminary.  Read more...
Celebrate Juneteenth! Sunday, June 19Juneteenth Indoor Picnic on Sunday, June 19!  Juneteenth commemorates June 19, 1865, when news of their freedom finally reached slaves in Galveston, Texas.  This was more than two years after President Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation was enacted on January 1, 1863.  This year, we will mark this occasion with a community celebration of freedom following worship.  It will include a time of information sharing, followed by a potluck and games, and is sponsored by the Care of Parish and Social Action and Awareness commissions and the People of Color Affinity Group.Read more...
Theology Reading Group, May 17, 6:30 PM Theology Reading Group, May 17 at 6:30 PM.  Jesus and the Disinherited by Howard Thurman.  Please join us as we read Howard Thurman’s inspiring work that describes how “the religion of Jesus offers us an ‘emancipatory way of living,’ unchained from the pressures of contemporary society, and available to all men and women who hunger for righteousness, especially those 'who stand with their backs against the wall.”  Thurman was a 20th century preacher, theologian and a mystic.Read more...
Love in the Time of XenophobiaxenophobiaLove in the Time of Xenophobia:  Tuesday, May 3 at 6:30 PM.  Please join us for a community conversation about anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim and anti-black rhetoric and actions that have emerged during the current political campaign.  This event is co-hosted by First Church, the Shoulder to Shoulder Campaign, and several other D.C. faith-based organizations. The event will include a brief panel discussion, which will be followed by engagement with those in attendance. The goal is to articulate the current status of these issues, provide context for how we arrived here, and jointly discuss a faithful response. For more information, contact James Ross at jamesdrossii@gmail.com.Read more...
20’s and 30’s Group Fellowshipyoung adults First Church 20's and 30's Group Fellowship, Sunday, April 17 at 6:30 p.m., 518 9th Street, NE, #910 (Capitol Hill/H Street NE).  You're invited by the 20's and 30's Group for fellowship (hanging out).  RSVP to Dave Stroup at dave.stroup@gmail.com.  Join the Google Group:  http://bit.ly/firstucc20s30s.Read more...
People of Color Affinity Group, April 3Affinity GroupSunday, April 3.  The people of color affinity group will meet in the Living Room after worship.  The word “affinity” suggests a connection based on some common characteristic.  Best practices suggest that that groups built around these common connections can provide comfortable environments where real people come together to explore faith and life.  All who identify as people of color are invited to attend today’s meeting.  For more information, please contact James Ross at jamesdrossii@gmail.com.Read more...
Pancake Breakfast & Easter Egg HuntEaster BunnyBe sure to join us following Easter Worship for the Annual Easter Pancake breakfast.  First Church Easter Egg Hunt:  Hopping all the way to DC, the Easter Bunny will be dropping off lots of eggs for the First Church Easter Egg Hunt.  As the pancake breakfast winds down, the children will be invited to participate in an Easter Egg Hunt in the Sanctuary! Contact Sam if you have any questions at mcferran.sam@gmail.com.Read more...
Theology Reading Group, April 21, 6:00 PMFields of BloodFields of Blood:  Religion and the History of Violence  by Karen Armstrong.  Thursday, April 21 at 6:00 PM in the Living Room.  With a historian’s acumen, Armstrong confronts religion’s violent pasts. She brings forth examples of how often states would apply a religious lens to their cause in order to create a sense of deeper significance, and to attract a deeper sense of fervor and loyalty. She also asks, “How does a citizen respond to their nation engaged in a holy war?Read more...