The United Church of Christ (UCC) is a distinct and diverse community of Christians that come together as one church to join faith and action. With over 5,000 churches and nearly one million members across the U.S., the UCC serves God in the co-creation of a just and sustainable world. The UCC is a church of firsts, a church of extravagant welcome, and a church where "…they may all be one" (John 17:21).
The United Church of Christ was organized in 1987 by a small group of citizens in St. Augustine and the surrounding areas. Over the years the name of the congregation has changed, but the current name of "The United Church of Christ of St. Augustine" truly reflects both the freedom to act in accordance with the collective decisions of the local members, and to live in a covenantal relationship with the larger church community.
The UCC is a blend of four churches into one, which are Congregational (the Pilgrims of the Northeast), Christian (from the Carolinas and the South), Evangelical (German missionaries in the Midwest), and Reformed (from Switzerland who settled in Pennsylvania, Ohio and the Midwest).
Meet the Pastors
Pastor Donna Cooney
I have always known life was meant to be rich holy and abundant. My search for a "true" spiritual home spurred my travels across continents and visits to churches, temples and mosques, but not until I arrived at the United Church of Christ (UCC) in 2006 was I able to experience that wonderful sense of coming home.
I left the family farm in Indiana at 17 and wandered to California. Later, with my military husband and children I traveled through Europe, Asia, the Adirondack Mountains and the Phoenix desert. During all those years, I knew I was in search of an ever-evasive spiritual connection.
Now, as part of the UCC I have discovered my gifts for becoming one with diverse groups of people, experiencing communion wherever bread is shared and worshiping whenever people sing. I have been encouraged to explore my faith, pushed to be inclusive, challenged to keep an open mind and invited to question.
It is my privilege to serve as Pastor of the United Church of Christ of St. Augustine. I am passionate about spiritual formation; committed, along with you, to shaping a creative community; and excited to share the message of original blessing.
In addition to serving as Pastor, I am a small business owner, a Rotarian and an advocate for the rights of women and immigrants. I hold a Master of Divinity degree and a B.S. in Business/Accounting.
I invite you to journey with us!
Pastor Judy Johnson
As the Associate Pastor I bring three religious traditions to the UCCSA. My church life began as a Southern Baptist in Alabama. I grew up in the church just about every time the doors were open. I travelled to Duke University for college and graduated as a secondary social studies teacher. Years later I would earn an MSW degree at Washington University, St. Louis. I began working in community mental health centers in southeast Missouri where I lived and worked for the next 35 years or so. In the early 21st century I moved into the Episcopal Church where I worshipped and served for seven or so years before joining and being ordained in the Christian Church Disciples of Christ denomination. During this time I graduated from Eden Seminary. I retired from the mental health field in 2014 and relocated to St. Augustine. I am jointly recognized now by the UCC denomination.
As a social worker I became certified to teach Mental Health First Aid. Since retirement I have offered this course several times to ministers in the Florida UCC Conference. I am also a member of the UCC Mental Health Network Board of Directors. It was through this connection that I organized the Florida Conference Mental Health Ministry Team. We worked to achieve WISE (welcoming, inclusive, supportive, engaged) for mental health status for our conference in 2017.
At UCCSA I am tasked with helping to care for our church members. We are encouraging active participation in coffee hour following church service on Sunday. We have begun the Super Supper Dinner/discussion group on Wednesday evenings.
I am a DMin student at Christian Theological Seminary. I have a partner of 40-plus years and two wonderful Vizsla dogs, Caleb, age eight, and Echo, age two. I enjoy outdoor activities that connect me with nature.
Moderator Peggy Crowell
Clerk Betsy Simpson
Located in the Sanctuary
St Augustine UCC
5880 US 1 South
St Augustine, Florida 32086
We welcome visitors to worhsip with us every Sunday at 10:00 a.m. Come as you are.
Janurary 28, 2018
I’ve been asked to speak on why I attend UCC St. Augustine, and as it happens today is the perfect time to speak since I’m officially joining the church today. It is hard to believe that I’m not a member yet, since I’m here every Sunday!