UCC History & Polity Course




United Church of Christ History and Polity will be taught at Lancaster Theological Seminary during Term III in Spring 2019, beginning Friday, February 22, 2019 and ending Friday, April 5, 2019.

The class will be held for 7 weeks on Friday afternoons from 2:00pm to 5:00pm on the Lancaster Seminary campus.

Assignments include reading and writing, resulting in a History and Polity paper that can be used as part of the ordination paper requirement for authorization.

Successful completion of assignments in the class will result in a Certificate of Completion that may be shared with the individual's Committee on Ministry to designate completion of an approved course.

This class is non-credit. Registration is required. The course fee is $ 300.00.

Registration deadline is Friday, February 15, 2019.

Course Dates: Seven weeks - Fridays, Feb. 22 through April 5, 2019, from 2:00pm - 5:00pm 


  • a seminarian or seminary graduate seeking ordination
  • clergy seeking or considering ministerial standing in the UCC through privilege of call
  • clergy seeking dual standing whilst serving in a federated or union setting, or a Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) pastor anticipating ministry in a UCC congregation
  • a person who has been encouraged to take a polity course by your Committee on Ministry as part of an alternative route to ordination, or for other reasons such as commissioning
  • a pastor or layperson who wants to refresh your knowledge of today's UCC


COURSE TITLE: United Church of Christ History & Polity

COURSE INSTRUCTORS: Rev. Bonnie Bates, Penn Northeast Designated Conference Minister; Rev. Betsy Bruaw, Peace UCC Interim Pastor, Denver, Pa.; Rev. Nora Foust, Penn Central Associate Conference Minister; Rev. Sharon Morris, Penn Southeast Associate Conference Minister for Search & Call.

The Course Coordinator is Rev. Dr. Carrie Call, Lancaster Theological Seminary.

COURSE LOCATION: Lancaster Theological Seminary, 555 West James St., Lancaster, Pa. 17603

COURSE DATES: Every Friday from 2-5 pm starting Feb. 22 and ending April 5. 

COST: $ 300 Course fee for a Certificate of Completion


A letter of reference is required for all applicants. You are responsible for making sure that your reference letter reaches us by the Feb. 15 deadline.

The reference letter should come to us from your denominational / judicatory representative confirming your good standing.

The letter should come to us directly from person writing the reference. Ask the person providing your reference to send a letter by Feb. 15 to Jamie Beth Schindler by email to jbschindler@lancasterseminary.edu or by U.S. postal service to:

Jamie Beth Schindler

Lancaster Theological Seminary

555 West James St.

Lancaster PA 17603


Books / materials are required for this course. You are required to buy the materials in advance and have them in hand in time for the course. You are responsible for the timely arrival of all materials. 

Your application will be considered only when all required items have been completed and received by the FEB. 15 DEADLINE including your letter of reference. You are responsbile for making sure that the person submitting your reference letter does so by the FEB. 15 DEADLINE.


Required Texts: We recommend purchasing texts since they will be important resources for an authorized minister in the UCC.

  • Daniel L. Johnson and Charles Hambrick-Stowe, eds., Theology and Identity: Traditions, Movements, and Polity in the United Church of Christ
  • Gunnemann, Louis H., The Shaping of the United Church of Christ: An Essay in the History of American Christianity
  • Hoffman, Jane Fisler, Covenant: A Study for the United Church of Christ
  • Zikmund, Barbara Brown, ed., The Living Theological Heritage of the United Church of Christ, Volume 7: United and Uniting.

Other texts (articles, chapters or charts) will be assigned as we progress through the course and direct-to-text web links will be provided.

Strongly Recommended Texts:

  • Health, Emily C., Glorify: Reclaiming the Heart of Progressive Christianity
  • Hollyday, Joyce, On the Heels of Freedom: The American Missionary Association’s Bold Campaign to Educate Minds, Open Hearts, and Heal the Soul of a Divided Nation
  • Zikmund, Barbara Brown, ed., Hidden Histories in the UCC, Vols. 1 & 2


Registration questions and general queries:

Jamie Beth Schindler, Faculty Assistant, jbschindler@lancasterseminary.edu, (717) 290-8750

Course questions:

Dr. Carrie Call, course coordinator, ccall@lancasterseminary.edu, (717) 290-8738



Register & Pay for UCC History & Polity Course CERTIFICATE OF COMPLETION


  1. Complete this form
  2. Pay the fees online at end of form
  3. Arrange to have a letter of reference sent to us from your denominational / judicatory representative confirming your good standing.

Non-U.S. Citizens may be subject to additional application requirements and should contact the Office of Admissions at admissions@lancasterseminary.edu for further information. The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is required of all applicants whose first language is not English.
List the year received and the name of the degree-granting institution
List the year received / anticipated and the name of the degree-granting institution

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