ReformationUCC.org exists to remember, celebrate, and build upon the foundation of the Reformation Roots of the United Church of Christ and proclaim the Supremacy of Jesus Christ!
That the United Church of Christ is a beneficiary of the reformation tradition is clear. It’s Congregational roots of the United Church of Christ bore witness to the reformation through the Savoy Declaration and Shorter Catechism, the Congregationalist witness to the importance of the Westminster Standards. The Evangelical and Reformed roots of the United Church of Christ acknowledged a variety of reformation confessions at one time or another including the Heidelberg Catechism among others.
But this recognition of the abiding significance to the Reformation as the lens through which our experience as Christians is best informed and through which our mission as a Christian body ought to be informed was reaffirmed near the end of the 20th century through the United Church’s entrance into “A Formula of Agreement Between the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), the Reformed Church in America, and the United Church of Christ”.
Through participation in that agreement, the United Church of Christ affirmed that the essence of the United Church of Christ’s faith, mission, and calling are rooted in the confessions of the Reformation.
The Creeds and Confessions held by the bodies listed above are numerous – the Presbyterian Church USA’s Book of Confessions spans cherished statements of faith from the Apostle’s Creed to the Barmen Declaration. The Evangelical Lutheran Church of America holds forth the Augsburg Confession and Luther’s Shorter Catechism as emblems of their faith. The Reformed Church in America retains the so called “Three Forms of Unity”, namely, the Belgic Confession, Heidelberg Catechism, and the Canons of the Synod of Dort.
By entering this agreement, we have confessed anew our obligation to the historic faith of the Church of Jesus Christ – for none of these historic statements ever considered themselves anything other than attempts to faithfully express the catholic faith as embodied in the Bible.
It is the working presupposition of the authors who contribute to this website that this agreement was sincere and well meant as a way of affirming our roots as a church profoundly indebted to the Reformation and all its diverse branches may be able to teach us. After all, part of the UCC heritage is even indebted to a 19th century uniquely “American” reformation movement – the Stone Campbell movement.
And it is also the working presupposition of the contributors to this website that, as these varied confessions all affirmed, that, in the words of the 2nd Helvetic Confession article on scripture that
We believe and confess the canonical Scriptures of the holy prophets and apostles of both Testaments to be the true Word of God, and to have sufficient authority of themselves, not of men. For God himself spoke to the fathers, prophets, apostles, and still speaks to us through the Holy Scriptures.
And in this Holy Scripture, the universal Church of Christ has the most complete exposition of all that pertains to a saving faith, and also to the framing of a life acceptable to God; and in this respect it is expressly commanded by God that nothing be either added to or taken from the same.
We write to for the Glory of the Triune God: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit and because of our love for God’s people in hopes of strengthening and blessing them.
Individual authors retain the copyright of their articles and they are used here by permission.
Individual authors present their work here to join with others who wish to remember, celebrate, and build upon the foundation of the Reformation Roots of the United Church of Christ. The authors do not necessarily agree with one another at every detail or even most details. Needless to say, the publisher, web host, and web servants of ReformationUCC.org do not necessarily agree at all or every point with every article. These works are offered here to encourage ourselves and others to pursue our lives and callings not simply as generic Christians, but as Christians whose faith and calling emerge all the more profoundly after reflecting critically yet appreciatively on the mercies of God which we have received as Reformation Christians providentially called to serve within the United Church of Christ.
Attribution: All images and quotations are believed to be in the public domain or eligible for “fair use” for non profit purposes under the copyright law. Copyright ownership is acknowledged wherever possible. Please email if we may rightly attribute something.
Note: ReformationUCC.org is not owned by or endorsed by the United Church of Christ. ReformationUCC.org reflects the private opinions of those concerned with reviving the doctrines that were cherished by the ancestors of those Christian bodies who subsequently formed the United Church of Christ. Soli Deo Gloria!