The United Church of Christ is an openly diverse denomination that formed in 1957 when the Congregational Christian Church and the Evangelical Reformed Christian traditions merged. We believe in the Deity of Jesus Christ, the Trinity, and the Old and New Testaments as the inspired Word of God. In the United Church of Christ, we take the Scriptures seriously, but not literally.
United Church of Christ Statement of Faith—adapted by Robert V. Moss
We believe in God, the Eternal Spirit, who is made known to us in Jesus our brother, and to whose deeds we testify:
God calls the worlds into being, creates humankind in the divine image, and sets before us the ways of life and death.
God seeks in holy love to save all people from aimlessness and sin.
God judges all humanity and all nations by that will of righteousness declared through prophets and apostles.
In Jesus Christ, the man of Nazareth, our crucified and risen Lord, God has come to us and shared our common lot, conquering sin and death and reconciling the whole creation to its Creator.
God bestows upon us the Holy Spirit, creating and renewing the church of Jesus Christ, binding in covenant faithful people of all ages, tongues, and races.
God calls us into the church to accept the cost and joy of discipleship, to be servants in the service of the whole human family, to proclaim the gospel to all the world and resist the powers of evil, to share in Christ’s baptism and eat at His table, to join Him in his passion and victory.
God promises to all who trust in the gospel forgiveness of sins and fullness of grace, courage in the struggle for justice and peace, the presence of the Holy Spirit in trial and rejoicing, and eternal life in that kingdom which has no end. Blessing and honor, glory and power be unto God.
Calvary is an Open & Affirming congregation that welcomes people from all walks of life. We truly try to embody the extravagant welcome of Jesus Christ, so that no matter where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here – regardless of gender, marital status, sexual orientation, or cultural background. At Calvary, God truly is still speaking.
The worship of God through Jesus Christ at Calvary combines the best of many traditions. We believe in meaningful liturgy, inspired preaching, the centrality of the Sacraments, and the chance for all people to participate in leadership, prayer, and sharing their faith. This is a photograph of Alois Lang, the artist who created the beautiful carving that adorns the front of our Altar, a reproduction of Da Vinci’s “Last Supper”.
There are two choices for worship at Calvary on Sunday mornings.
8:00am – This is a weekly Holy Communion service held in our Chapel (near our parking area and up the steps on Oley Street). Singing is accompanied by acoustic guitar, and the format is liturgical but casual. The service normally lasts 40-45 minutes, giving worshipers a chance to attend Adult Forum.
10:30am – (9:30am from Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day Weekend) – This service is larger, and is held in the Sanctuary (at the corner of Oley St. and Centre Ave.). It features Holy Communion about once a month, and special music every week. This service is usually an hour to an hour and fifteen minutes long. There is also a ramp available on 4th Street for those who have difficulty with steps.
For those who are unable to worship on Sunday, there is a Bible Study on the first Tuesday at 7:00pm. This is an interactive Bible Study.
Also– Keep an eye out for special services during the year!
Lent – Ash Wednesday – Noon & 7pm, Lenten Soup Suppers every Wednesday from 6-7pm. Holy Thursday & Good Friday – Noon & 7pm.
Easter – ONLY 10:30 Worship with Breakfast from 9-10:15.
Advent – White Gift for Bethany Children’s Home, Special Harp Music, and more.
Christmas Eve – 7pm & 10:30pm with special music for 30 minutes before each service.
And many more…
Calvary is committed to non-judgmental help to anyone who needs it. We are connected to regional, national, and worldwide outreach through the Reading Association, the Pennsylvania SE Conference, and the National Church. We are also committed to feeding the hungry, housing the homeless, and clothing those in need. Our food cupboard is available as an emergency source of food for 2 to 3 days, and we assist people regularly with overdue bills. We participate as a site for Family Promise, and we work with Safe Berks, Mary’s Home, the Reading Berks Conference of Churches, Opportunity House, Ready.Set.Read!, the Reading Public Schools, just to name a few.
Along with worship, we provide opportunities for adults and children to grow in the Spirit of Christ. Adult Forum f is at 9am on the Sunday after Labor Day through the Sunday before Memorial Day. This year we will be having Sunday School in the afternoons once a month – and we will serve lunch! This is inter-generational, so kids of any age can join in.
We are also pleased to have developed a relationship with Albright College’s Religious Studies Department. We work with the department to offer lectures and learning experiences for laity and clergy.
ALSO – If you would like to receive Pastor Steve’s Weekly Prayers/Thoughts/etc, please email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.