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Our Story

Urban Light was founded in the summer of 2005 by a group of residents, both indigenous and relocators, of the urban south side of post-industrial Muncie.  After several years of living together in the community, meeting together, studying together, and eating together, Urban Light was birthed as a worshipping community.  From small beginnings, Urban Light has grown into a thriving multicultural church representative of our community at every level of leadership. 

Our vision is one of reconciliation: that people might be reconciled to God and to each other.  We intentionally pursue relationships of diversity across ethnic and socioeconomic lines.  Space and place is important to us; our ministries are located along S. Madison St., the historic dividing line of segregation in Muncie.  We live life on what W.E.B. DuBois called “the color line.” 

Several years after our founding, we started the Urban Light Christian Development Corporation.  This non-profit exists to join Jesus Christ in his reconciliation of all things.  We plant a community garden, renovate homes for affordable rentals and new homeownership, support each other through addictions, partner with employment initiatives like In and Out Cleaning, and support our community through empowering educational opportunities.  After running an academic coaching program for years, the CDC was instrumental in the launching of Inspire Academy, an urban public charter school that employs the Expeditionary Learning approach.  Many community leaders and organizations have partnered with us on shared initiatives. 

Today, Urban Light has a participatory worship celebration, Biblical expository preaching, shared community meals the first Sunday of every month, youth group, addiction recovery, mentoring, small groups, and more.  Each year we join our neighbors together in a huge outdoor block party.  With the prophet Jeremiah, we strive to build houses, plant vineyards, and seek the peace of our city.  We are so thankful for the path upon which the Lord has led us and we invite you to join us on the journey.

What We Believe

(the statement of faith from our denomination, the Churches of God, General Conference)

  • We believe that the Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God, the only infallible rule of faith and practice.

  • We believe in one God, eternally existent in three persons – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – one in essence and community.

  • We believe in God the Father, the almighty Creator of heaven and earth.

  • We believe that Jesus Christ our Lord is the Word made flesh – fully God and fully man.  We believe he was conceived by the Holy Spirit, was born of the virgin Mary, lived a sinless life, was crucified, died and was buried, rose again on the third day, and ascended into heaven.

  • We believe in the divinity of the Holy Spirit, who indwells the believer.  The Holy Spirit convicts of sin, enables the believer to live a holy life, comforts, teaches, and bestows spiritual gifts.

  • We believe humanity is created in the image of God, has fallen into sin, and can be born again by the Spirit, justified freely by grace, and saved through the atoning work of Jesus Christ alone.

  • We believe that the Church is the body of Christ, the people of God, whose mission is to make disciples of all nations and to be salt and light in the world.

  • We believe baptism, the Lord’s supper, and feetwashing to be ordinances of the Church.

  • We believe in the return of Jesus Christ, the resurrection of the body, the final judgment, everlasting life, and the new heavens and new earth.

ULCC ethical statement


As a member of an historically evangelical and social reform denomination in the Wesleyan tradition, Urban Light is committed to both proclamation and social justice – proclaiming the Good News of salvation in Jesus Christ and working for justice in many forms. (Matt. 28:18-20; Amos 5:21-24)


Urban Light is active in community development work in the urban core of Muncie. Our commitments in these areas mirror our denomination’s social reform roots as an abolitionist, anti-war, and temperance movement. The CGGC has always ordained women to all pastoral roles in the church.


In general, Urban Light seeks to embody the following values. We welcome a diversity of opinion on ethical issues and do not expect all those who are part of our community to agree with all the nuances of the following ethical convictions. We are open to dialogue. 


  • Racial reconciliation and justice

    • We value intentional diversity among ministers and congregants as an embodiment of the diversity of the body of Christ. We also recognize the systemic nature of racism and we work for justice in society and in relationships. (1 Cor. 12:12-20; Eph. 2:11-22)

  • Addiction recovery

    • We value restorative, non-punitive healing in community from the bondage of addictions (drugs, alcohol, unhealthy relational or sexual dynamics, psychological struggles, eating disorders, etc.). (Isaiah 53:5; 2 Cor. 3:17)

  • Active nonviolence and love of enemies

    • We value working through conflict without recourse to violence, both at interpersonal and societal levels. This does not mean passivity but means actively confronting oppression, marginalization, and abuse in the prophetic way of Jesus. (Matt. 26:52; Rom. 12:14-21) 

  • Love of neighbor 

    • Rooted in Jesus’ command, we seek to love our neighbors as ourselves. This means being good neighbors with those around us and loving all people regardless of race, nationality, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexuality, and ability. We believe that God created humans to bear God’s image, which leads us to work for justice and equality for all people. (Matt. 22:35-40; Gen. 1:27)

  • Accessibility ministry

    • We value being inclusive of and accommodating with people with disabilities, whether physical, mental, or cognitive. (Mark 2:1-12)

  • Creation care

    • We value living in our place well, as dependent members of God’s good creation. This includes working toward environmental care, sustainable energy use and food production, and care for animals. (Gen. 2:15; Rom. 8:19-21)

  • A consistent ethic of life

    • We value protecting life as a gift from God, from conception to natural death. This means that we resist war, abortion, the death penalty, euthanasia, unjust economic distribution, and lack of access to healthcare. (Psalm 139:13-16; Matt. 5:21-24; Lev. 25)

  • A sensitive ethic of community and sexuality

    • We believe that, in Jesus, we are part of a new family that transcends natural family ties (Mark 10:29-31). We welcome all people, including those in the LGBTQ+ community, into the family and ministries of Urban Light Community Church. We repent for the ways the church has often contributed to the marginalization of people. We belong to a denominational stream that interprets the Scriptures and church tradition to signify that marriage is a life-long and monogamous covenant between a woman and a man (Mark 10:6-9). At the same time, our local church shares a diversity of opinions on these subjects and welcomes all to the table.

  • Gender diversity

    • We are part of a Christian tradition that interprets the Scriptures to signify that both women and men may be ordained to all pastoral roles in the church. We understand that gender norms in society have often been restrictive and we believe that the Gospel overturns such objectification. (Gal. 3:28; Acts 2:17-18)

  • Community development

    • We actively work for (and / or partner with organizations that work for) educational equality, empowering employment, a just distribution of resources, access to social services and healthcare, safe and dignifying housing, incarceration alternatives, transitional housing, community gardening, just policing, financial training, clinical counseling, and more. (Isaiah 58; Isaiah 65:17-25; Matt. 6:10)

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