Services & Times

Two Children Carrying Two Very Tall Poles with Ribbon

Sunday Worship
at 10am

(+ coffee, soup & potluck after-party every week!)

Rev Kit Novotny Talking to a Group in Loper Chapel

Open Chapel
for Young Adults

 Currently on pandemic hiatus.

Candle burning against black background

Currently on pandemic hiatus.

Special Sundays

Quarterly “Arts Meet Life” Sundays:
one of our pastors in conversation with an artist, performer, journalist or cultural influencer as the sermon moment
Service as Worship Sundays:
mini-worship followed by “sweat equity” service to the world, on our campus and throughout our neighborhood
Holidays & Holy Days
We celebrate special seasons and services with creativity, beauty, and a lot of heart. Join us for Advent & Christmas Eve, Ash Wednesday, Holy Week & Easter, Blessing of the Animals, Transgender Day of Remembrance, and more.

Getting you to First Church

find us in downtown Berkeley...

Map Showing Location of 2345 Channing Way


Our address is 2345 Channing Way, Berkeley, CA 94704, which brings you to our parking lot entrance. Our main entrance is on Dana Street (between Durant & Channing). Walkable from Downtown Berkeley BART and on several bus lines! Service is at 10am!
Directions & Parking Page

Racks full of Bicycles Outside of the Church


We have a parking lot (enter on Channing) with priority spots for first-time visitors, families with young children and elders with mobility issues on Sunday morning, and plenty of bike racks. Our Parking Lot Attendant offers double parking. There's also street parking and other lots nearby! Directions & Parking Page

Toddler Girl carrying a cupcake on a plate


Grab a cup of coffee before worship. Stick around after worship to nourish your body and soul at our After Party: more coffee and tea, snacks and yummy homemade soup (see more below).

You Made It!

what to expect

Photo of Sanctuary from the Balcony


We are blessed with a spectacular sacred space where generations have found peace and inspiration. Make yourself at home among us: spread out, cozy up, or sneak up to the balcony. We also serve the community through concerts, lectures (we’ve hosted everyone from Ta-Nehisi Coates to Patti Smith to RBG!), and as a gem of New England architecture

A Motley Group of Three Smiling and standing with arms around each other


Our space might feel formal, but we call ourselves the “Motley Pew” — people come dressed however they feel most comfortable, from jeans and snarky T-shirts, to dolled up in their Sunday best. Please be yourself in every sense! We have an All Gender Restroom available in the Hall of Entrance, changing tables (and extra diapers and wipes!) for little ones, and a comfy rocking chair for feeding and soothing babies. 

People with Arms Enthusiastically Upraised in the Sanctuary


We value inclusivity and disability empowerment, and offer large print bulletins and assistive hearing devices. An usher in the Hall of Entrance can offer assistance.  We also have wiggle seats for kiddos who may have sensory difficulties or anyone who struggles with sitting for longer periods. When we pass the peace, feel free to offer a hand-shake, hug, or “Namaste.”

rev molly preaching on the chancel next to a bike


Often paired with playful scripture storytelling, or other media, our sermons at First Church are a thoughtful blend of biblical exploration (sometimes wrestling!), humor and vulnerability, along with deep engagement with the justice issues and spiritual insights of our day, from current events, psychology, the arts, and beyond. 
Watch & Listen to Sermons Here

man speaking at a podium


Many Sundays we hear first-hand from First Church members sharing their own personal faith testimonies: stories of transformation, simple awakening, confession, spiritual renewal. The universal is contained in the particular! You will probably laugh and/or cry! (We got your back, there are tissue boxes in most pews)

derek tam smiling and waving on the chancel


At First Church, we love all kinds of music: from our locally renowned organ, and classic hymns, to powerful gospel, pop hits, and camp songs. Feel free to sing out, stand or sit, sway or harmonize, dance or clap, or simply enjoy.
Read more about Music here!

two people smiling and holding a loaf of handmade bread


We offer Holy Communion and Healing Prayers every Sunday for all who wish to participate: directly after worship, or, every *first* Sunday of each month, during the service (with fresh, home-baked bread!) At First Church, God’s table is open to ALL (we even use grape juice & offer gluten free, too).

people gathered at tables on the church lawn


The nourishment continues after church, which usually wraps up around 11:15! Join us outside on the terrace for our abundant after-party with coffee & tea, delicious homemade soup & goodies, and a chance to connect with new church pals ages 0-101. Stop by the Sermon Digestion Table to reflect on the day’s teachings and dive deeper together.

people gathered in a kitchen showing off their cooking and smiling


From 11:45am-1pm, check out that day’s Adult Education Learning Hour, or make your way to one of our support groups, ministry meetings, rehearsals, etc. After-care is provided most Sundays in the back play-yard. Or linger for more food and conversation!


Jesus loved children and so do we.

Children of all ages are welcome in worship and/or in our wonderful Sunday School programs. We have a whole other page for that! Check it out here.

two very young children sitting on steps