We attended the First Congregational United Church of Christ in Poughkeepsie, New York this Sunday. Their service started at 10:30 AM.
This UCC Church is an Open and Affirming Church as of 2007. They have always been on the forefront of human rights movements. According to their website http://www.opentogod.org/
"Of the first 73 men who joined FCC in the first four years, at least 40 were documented members of the Poughkeepsie Anti-Slavery Society or otherwise active in the abolitionist movement. FCC called as its first two pastors 28-year-old Rev. Almon Underwood, an energetic member of the PASS, and then 27-year-old Rev. Levi Waldo, also active in the cause. Waldo's associates in antislavery work included such prominent national leaders as Lucretia Mott and Stephen and Abby Kelley Foster. In 1839, FCC was the only white church in Poughkeepsie to participate in prayer vigils on behalf of the enslaved."
Members of this church are still inspired to respond to human rights issues. Church members have written repeatedly to state representatives, urging passage of marriage equality legislation. FCC participates in the annual Pride Parade sponsored by the LGBTQ Center of the Hudson Valley.
The altar and many of the congregation were dressed up for Pentacost Sunday, all in reds. The Pastor, Reverend Heather Moody, is a very friendly and outgoing young woman. She keeps the spirit alive in this congregation, you can tell. She had us waiving crepe paper red banners during the sermon and through some of the hymns. And, we found the congregation very friendly and so may continue to visit this church while we are here. We are tempted though to visit a few more of the UCC Churches before we make up our minds just because we love visiting some of the churches and taking part in their service.
This church has many beautiful stained glass windows. They recently replaced the protection for the windows which had yellowed with age. They again glisten in the sun.
These windows are above the front door into the church.