We realize that it can feel awkward to attend a new church for the first time. We want you to feel comfortable when you are here with us, so here are some frequently asked questions:
What denomination does Los Altos UCC belong to?
Los Altos United Church of Christ is part of the United Church of Christ (UCC). The UCC came into being in 1957 with the union of two Protestant denominations: the Evangelical and Reformed Church and the Congregational Christian Churches. Each of these was, in turn, the result of a union of two earlier traditions. Our roots are in the great Reformation movement, as well as with the Pilgrims who came to the United States searching for religious freedom.
What is distinct about the United Church of Christ?
We in the UCC cherish not only our rich and profound history, but also our dynamic and vibrant ministry and mission yet today. The UCC has about 1.1 million members nationwide in over 5,200 congregations.
The UCC is a church of many “firsts.” We were the first mainline church to take a stand against slavery (1700), the first to ordain an African American person (1785), the first to ordain a woman (1853), the first in foreign missions (1810), and the first to ordain openly gay lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered persons (1972). We value education for all people. We founded Harvard and Yale, as well as many historically black colleges, six of which remain affiliated with the UCC to this day.
Who is welcome at Los Altos UCC?
All are welcome.
Our Los Altos UCC family is comprised of a diverse group of people, some raised within the United Church of Christ denomination, some raised in different faiths or with none at all with a broad spectrum of beliefs, interests, and histories.
Expect to find a warm and friendly, intergenerational community. We are an Open and Affirming congregation and welcome the LGBT+ community in all aspects of our church life.
Where are you located?
Los Altos UCC is located on Atherton Street just east of Bellflower Blvd. in Long Beach, California. See directions page.
Is parking available?
Yes, there is ample parking in the lot between the church and the Whaley Park Community Center on Atherton. There is also street parking in front of the church.
Is the church accessible?
Our sanctuary is wheelchair accessible and there are parking spaces close to the sanctuary for people with physical challenges.
What should I wear?
We have no dress policy and encourage everyone to wear what is comfortable for them.
How long are services?
Our Sunday morning worship service is approximately one hour.
What is worship like at Los Altos UCC?
We project our service onto screens in our sanctuary. There you can follow along with the words to the call to worship, prayers, scriptures, and hymns.
Our music director begins with gathering music to help center us as we prepare for worship. The service includes prayers, scripture, a sermon and hymns. Sometimes the mood is quiet and contemplative and at other times it is exuberant and spirit-filled. Announcements about upcoming events and information for the congregation are offered at the end of the service prior to the blessing and postlude.
In every service, you will hear a compelling and challenging message that nourishes your mind as much as your soul. We make our message relevant to daily life, no matter where you are on life’s journey.
We encourage you to visit as often as you like and we welcome you to make Los Altos UCC your home.
Do you offer child care or Sunday School?
Yes! After the Time With Children in our service, the children are invited to attend Sunday School classes. These classes seek to ask questions, engage curiosity and use our God-given creativity to connect the stories of the Bible to our lives.
Childcare is available for small children and they can be dropped off in Room #1 prior to the service, starting at 9:30 am.
Can I take part in Communion?
No matter who you are…you’re welcome at Los Altos UCC. This includes our Communion table. The first Sunday of each month we celebrate Communion and all are welcome to participate.
Am I required to give an offering?
An offering is collected at all church services. There is an offering plate at the back of the sanctuary, or you can give online. As a congregation, we have no expectation for visitors to give. It is totally a free will offering.
Is there fellowship after church?
Yes, after each Sunday service, just follow the crowds to the courtyard which is open for a time of fellowship and refreshment. Please join us for coffee and conversation so that we can get to know you!