Extravagant Welcome

It matters who you are and where you are on life's journey. You, in the fullness of who you are—you are welcome here!

——  Our Welcome Statement

We love because God first loved us. Radically. Extravagantly. Pressed down and running over. Just the way we are.

As an Open and Affirming congregation, we practice welcoming all people in the fullness of their identities and experiences into the life and ministry of our community. We commit to loving out loud—and to learning how we can do better. At the beginning of each worship service, a member of the congregation shares these words, proclaiming our intention to welcome each person joyfully and explicitly:

Let us be glad to welcome each other as Jesus has welcomed us:

Welcome to First Congregational Church in Billerica!

Welcome to new visitors and to old friends.

Welcome to grandparents, mothers, fathers, and children. Welcome to old and young.

Welcome to single, partnered, married, widowed, and divorced people.

Welcome to those who have served or are currently serving in our
armed forces.

Welcome to people of all colors, cultures, nationalities, sexual orientations, and gender expressions.

Welcome to people across the full spectrum of abilities, financial circumstances, and mental and physical health.

Welcome to seekers and searchers, believers and questioners, and welcome to questioning believers.

In our brokenness and in our healing, in our sorrow and in our joy—we are welcome here just the way we are!

Together, let us encounter God’s love and justice.

——  Our Open and Affirming Declaration

Adopted 2013

You shall love the Lord your God
with all your heart, and with all your soul,
and with all your strength, and with all your mind;
and your neighbor as yourself.

Luke 10:27
We, the congregation of the First Congregational Church in Billerica, are committed to loving each other as God loves us: freely and unconditionally. We believe that all people are created in God’s image and thus are loved and blessed equally by God. We invite and welcome into our community persons of every gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, age, race, nationality, economic and social status, mental and physical health and ability, faith background, marital standing and family structure.
In our community of faith, all people are encouraged to participate and share their talents and energy in worship and sacraments, leadership positions, ordained ministry, lay ministry, learning, service, mission and fellowship. Therefore, no matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here.
Following the example of Jesus Christ, we hereby declare ourselves to be an Open and Affirming Church.