Who are we?
- We are people of graditude and joyful worship.
- We take care of each other. This is SO important!
- We have been brought up in other faith traditions or none at all.
- We are people of different ages and styles of life.
- We are people of different races, including multi-racial families.
- We are all over the map politically.
- We are free to wrestle theologically.
- We like to think and exchange ideas and opinions.
- We respect other faith traditions, and some of our families are interfaith.
- Our families are different shapes and sizes and include singles, significant others, and those who have lost partners or spouse.
- Some of us have children . . . some of us don’t . . . some of us are children.
- We value creativity and use the arts in many ways in the life of the church.
We Welcome EVERYONE!
The Oxford Congregational Church traces its faith heritage from the Puritan movement of the English Reformation. We believe in one God who created all things, who has redeemed the world from its sins and errors in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and who guides and strengthens us through the Holy Spirit. The church’s covenant reads:
“We covenant one with another to seek and respond to the Word and the Will of God. We resolve to walk together in the ways of the Lord, made known and to be made known to us. We hold it to be the mission of the Church to witness to the Gospel of Jesus Christ in all the world, while worshipping God, and striving for truth, justice and peace. As did those before us, we depend on the Holy Spirit to lead and empower us. We pray for the coming of the Kingdom of God, and we look with faith toward the triumph of righteousness and eternal life.”
Another expression our faith is found in the United Church of Christ Statement of Faith. In the UCC, we say that such statements, along with history creeds and confessions, are not a "tests" of faith, but rather testimonies of faith. This reflects the broad diversity of faith perspectives gathered in our house of worship and within our denomination. The UCC offers several Statements of Faith which are often read at baptisms, confirmation, and when new members join the church. Learn more here.
The church worships in a simple, quiet style, singing hymns by the guidance of an organ and a small but strong choir. Holy Communion is celebrated on the first Sunday of each month, and Baptisms are celebrated as requested.
Our Long History.
Congregational churches in Connecticut were established by action of the colonial legislature. Because church attendance was a legal obligation, churches tended to be founded as the edge of European settlement crept up the smaller river valleys from the earlier settlements in Hartford, New Haven, and Saybrook.
Three residents of what was then known as northern Derby petitioned the General Assembly to form the Ecclesiastical Society of Oxford in 1741, and held the first meeting that June.
At this early stage ministers could only be hired for one year. The Society began work on a building, but met in Mr. Sam Twitchell’s house on the Sabbath until the Meeting House was usable in June of 1743. On January 9, 1746, the Society received permission from the General Assembly to “embody a Church Estate and settle a Minister.” The Rev. Jonathan Lyman accepted the call to be the first settled pastor and served from 1746 to 1763.
The church’s work and membership has changed many times in many ways over the 255 intervening years. At some periods it has been served briefly by divinity students, and at others by settled pastors over long terms. It is now reviewing its mission statement and visualizing the possibilities for faith and ministry in the 21st century.
In 1957, the Congregational Christian Church and the Evangelical Reformed Church merged into the United Church of Christ, thus bringing together these churches into one rich tapestry of history, witness, and faith.
We are also a full member of the United Church of Christ, and participates in its life, work, and mission. It is a member of the Naugatuck Valley Association of the UCC, in which it shares in the authorization and supervision of ministers, and supports the ministry of each member church. Learn more here.
It is also a member of the Connecticut Conference, UCC, which assists local churches in their work and carries on mission work across the state. The church also works with its neighbors through Area Congregations Together (ACT) in Derby, Connecticut, and the Seymour/Oxford Clergy Association.
Stop On By . . . Our Office Hours.
The church office is open Tuesday through Friday from 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM.
Other times are by appointment.