Our Identity


We’re called to be a welcoming, nurturing community of faith, gathered to celebrate and share God’s love. Empowered by the Spirit of God, we struggle to live the teachings of Jesus Christ in our broken world; as we seek joy and justice for all creation.


We’re a multi-generational church with many grade-school children, a growing number of young people in junior high and high school, young adults, many middle-agers, and many senior adults–including some founding members of the congregation.

We have many kinds of families: single parents and their children, remarried people, traditional couples with and without children, same-sex couples with and without children, transgender people, widows and widowers, single people–gay and lesbian, straight, divorced, and never married.

We have people with many kinds of faith backgrounds: Congregationalist, Baptist, Roman Catholic, Episcopalian, Presbyterian, Methodist, Mormon, Seventh Day Adventist, Church of Christ, and people with no church background whatsoever.

We’re a progressive, warm, friendly church that loves to build community and makes visitors feel welcome.


As followers of Jesus, we’re committed to spiritual growth shaped by the Gospel. The congregation encourages questioning and growing in our understanding of God and faith as we walk together on our spiritual journeys. We have a dynamic, creative understanding of scripture, rather than a static literal understanding. We believe that scripture must be studied in its historical and social contexts, and that God is still speaking both through scripture and in our lives.

We’re committed to including those excluded by other churches. College Avenue is an “Open and Affirming” community that invites lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people to participate fully in the church’s life. We welcome non-traditional families of many kinds. We require no test of faith or proper belief.

We’re committed to community and global service, and to working for peace and justice in our world. Our community outreach includes serving as mentors for students at Modesto High School and providing a youth support group for LGBT students from many local schools. It also includes activities to raise money for people in need throughout our community. Our global outreach has included projects to help refugees in Darfur and struggling villages in Mexico. Our peace and justice work has included raising consciousness about genocide in Darfur and witnessing for marriage equality.

We’re committed to young people. A full time Student Ministries Director leads exciting programs for children, youth, and young adults in a brand new youth building. Childcare is available for all church events. Safety policies protect our young people.