Lakewood United Church of Christ is a Christian community dedicated to worship, spiritual growth, fellowship, and service. Everyone is welcome regardless of religion, theological orientation, race, gender expression, age, sexual identity, national origin, immigration status, or financial means. Called to love God, love all neighbors, and care for creation, Lakewood UCC is :
- A Just Peace Church – In 1990, Lakewood formally endorsed a commitment to work for justice, seek peace, and alleviate systemic injustice using non-violence. This includes spiritual witness and education around God’s call to justice and peace, witness and assistance to those in need in our community, and organizing and speaking out on key social and political issues. (For more information, see Just Peace.)
- An Open and Affirming Church – In 1998, Lakewood UCC formally endorsed a commitment to welcome people of all sexual orientations, gender identities, and gender expressions fully into the life and ministry of this faith community. (For more information, see Open and Affirming.)
- A Creation Justice Church – In 2018, Lakewood UCC formally endorsed a commitment to restoring right relationship with the natural world through worship, eco-friendly practices, and advocacy for environmental justice in this community and the wider world. (For more information, see Creation Justice.)
LUCC is a support congregation for Family Promise, a coalition of congregations in the St. Petersburg area seeking to help homeless families with children become financially self sufficient and stable.
LUCC is also a support congregation for Operation Attack and continues to serve the community by attacking poverty: providing food and clothing to those who need it. Operation Attack is headquartered at Lakeview Presbyterian Church (1310 22nd Ave S).
Children and young people are a vital part of the LUCC family. All children participate in the beginning of the worship service. There is a Youth Moment for the young and young at heart during the service. After the Youth Moment elementary children are welcome in Church School. Preschool children are welcome in the Nursery under the able care of Claudia Rodriguez. Middle and High School students stay for the service. Children and young people are an integral part of this community and the intergenerational relationships that form in this small congregation are truly a blessing!
By calling ourselves progressive, we mean we are Christians who…
• Have found an approach to God through the life and teachings of Jesus.
• Recognize the faithfulness of other people who have other names for the way to God’s realm, and acknowledge that their ways are true for them, as our ways are true for us.
• Understand the sharing of bread and wine in Jesus’s name to be a representation of an ancient vision of God’s feast for all peoples
• Invite all people to participate in our community and worship life without insisting that they become like us in order to be acceptable (including …
• Know that the way we behave toward one another and toward other people is the fullest expression of what we believe.
• Find more grace in the search for understanding than we do in dogmatic certainty – more value in questioning than in absolutes.
• Form ourselves into communities dedicated to equipping one another for the work we feel called to do: striving for peace and justice among all people, protecting and restoring the integrity of all God’s …
• Recognize that being followers of Jesus is costly, and entails selfless love, conscientious resistance to evil, and renunciation of privilege.
A Place for you at the table
This is our vocabulary list–maybe we speak your language:
Lakewood United Church of Christ is intentionally organized so that the passion and initiative for ministry is vested in the congregation itself. A non-hierarchical structure fosters congregation-based decision making. The entire church family, including children and youth, is invited to gatherings which provide the opportunity to generate new ministries and elicit broad participation.
Our Members Say:
• “Coming to Church helps me communicate with God.”
• “I come here to make friends and have ties with others…even those who are different from me. It’s such a cross section of people at Lakewood.”
• “It is my extended family”
• “It’s my faith community, a weekly reminder of my faith.”
• “It helps me focus every week–focus my spiritual life.”
• “Events in the world are disconcerting. I find that coming to church helps give me a way of handling what is going on in the world and in my life.”
• “The diversity of this congregation is important to me.”
• “Our worship services give me the strength to do all the things I need to do during the week.”
As Christians, we are called to proclaim the gospel and to resit the powers of evil. Along with the Apostle Paul, we know “nothing in creation” including our differences in age, race, ethnicity, sexual identity, marital status, disabilities, abilities, economic status, sexual orientation, language, heritage, faith, nationality, indeed, “nothing in death or life,” can separate us from the love of God.
We claim a scriptural tradition which declares that our differences do not change our relationship to one another as members of Christ’s body. There, at Lakewood United Church of Christ, we offer the hospitality and inclusive love of Christ to all people. As a church with an open door and an open heart, we are called to welcome and celebrate all who come to worship, sharing together the presence and power of God in our lives and in our world.
Our covenant with the United Church of Christ (UCC) means that we affirm the freedom of every local congregation.
Formed in 1957, the UCC brings together the heritage of four denominations: Congregational (Pilgrim and Puritan), Christian, Evangelical, and Reformed.
Along with 5,600 other congregations, we share the tradition, heritage, and mission of the United Church of Christ.