At University Mennonite Church we value and respect the unique contributions each person brings to the body of Christ. We recognize the sacred worth and dignity of all people and celebrate the image of God in our diversity. All are welcome at UMC, regardless of race, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, ability, physical or mental health, education, and economic or marital status.
Full membership in UMC is open to all in our fellowship who confess Jesus as Lord and Savior and assent to the our statement of faith.
Many people confuse the Mennonites with the Amish. Although we come from the same historical roots, the way we choose to interpret and express our beliefs is different. Read more about the differences between Mennonites and Amish on Thirdway.com.
We are a community of Christians who seek to be faithful disciples of Jesus in today’s world. This discipleship is nurtured and expressed in our worship services, in mutual care and discernment, and in our mission to serve others and invite them to follow Christ.
We share in common with all Christians the following beliefs: that God creates and sustains the universe; that Jesus, the son of God, is our Savior and Lord; and that our mission is to spread the good news. Some of our distinctive emphases are as follows:
- The freedom of each person to explore a responsible commitment to Christ.
- A commitment to know Christ and to live a life of discipleship within Christ’s body, the Christian community.
- The belief that discipleship leads to a life of love, peacemaking, and service to all.
- The belief that social justice and stewardship apply to the whole of creation-the earth and all within.
- The accurate interpretation and application of the Bible occurs in the community of believers.
We celebrate together each member’s initiation into the Christian community through adult baptism, and the ongoing presence of Christ, at the center of that community, with the Lord’s Supper (Holy Communion).
The local church was established in 1963 by a group of twelve founding members (read more about our history here). The congregation met in members’ homes and on the Penn State campus before purchasing a meetinghouse in 1980. When the growing congregation needed more space for worship and fellowship we moved to our current building at 1606 Norma Street. We are members of the Mennonite Church USA and the Mennonite World Conference, which is represented on six continents.