Progressive church with active teen group?

I am in search of a church that has a fun & active youth group. I was raised in the Episcopalian tradition and that is my comfort zone, but I am open to other denominations. I really need the space to be open and affirming of LGBT community and women.


Parent Replies

New responses are no longer being accepted.

Try the First Congregational Church of Berkeley, which is very affirming and has women ministers. FCCB is currently having services elsewhere (at Congregation Beth El) due to the fire last fall but will be moving back to its campus in a month or two.

Look into Unitarian Universalism. Not sure where our Bay Area congregations are, but we welcome ALL individuals of any race, ethnicity, faith (or lack thereof), gender identity, social status, family makeup, etc. who seek a path of truth for themselves.  As a former Catholic and Episcopalian, I have always felt at home there, most likely you will feel at home there too, as we strive to provide appropriate lifelong education on how all faiths are valid and honored. Youth groups typically engage in civil activism and charity activism. It's great for networking with other parents regardless of your child's age, there will always be parents "in the same boat" (whatever boat that may be at the time). It comes out of the Judeo-Christian tradition, with a few set liturgical practices, but mostly everything is very free and easy. It originated in Transylvania as Universalism - the idea that there is universal salvation for all those who seek it, regardless of the path chosen. UUs have been and are currently very active in civil rights -- from Black Lives Matter to immigration reform to bail/jail reform, we are in a lot of fights and we encourage our youth to participate as much as possible.  Good luck, Peace and let us know what works out for you!

You might try Danville Congregational Church.  Very open and welcoming to all.

The East Bay Lutheran Youth Program has an active and fun group.  It is very inclusive and affirming of LGBT community and of women!!  The elementary group meets once a month; the Middle School and High School Ministry each meet 2x a month. The groups also go on retreats and do service projects.

For info email: craigmunich [at]

Hello! You might be interested in All Souls, an Episcopal church in Berkeley. They have weekly programs for youth (separate high school and middle school groups), and a very upbeat, friendly focus on families. All the family events I've attended so far have been great and I love the services. From the website description: "Youth Group and Confirmation Class are places where it is safe to question and wonder together about faith and the stuff of daily life in a community. We belong to one another and are lifted up and supported by the larger All Souls community. This is a place where we can take our masks off and be ourselves, loved and accepted for who we are." The community welcomes LGBT families and has LGBT representatives on church staff. Come any Sunday and check it out, or drop an email to Emily Hansen Curran Emily [at] . Good luck with your search!

Epworth United Methodist church in Berkeley has a thriving youth group comprised of middle school-high school. The church is definitely open to the LGBTQ community and to women. Come check it out any Sunday at 10 AM. The kids and youth meet for Sunday school and youth group around 10:15 AM as part of worship.

I'm a member of the First Unitarian church of Oakland at 14th st x Castro and I HIGHLY encourage you to check us out. We have a great, embracing and active youth group, both ministers are women (one is openly gay), the congregation is justice-centered, all-faiths-and loves-affirming, with LOTS of lgbtq leaders and congregants. It's a wonderful place for so many of us who seek spirituality and community but not dogma. May you find what you seek!

I highly recommend Epworth United Methodist Church in North Berkekey.  The congregation is socially active, progressive, and welcoming. The youth are a lovely group of kids.

I attend Mosaic Bay Church in Albany, 1221 Marin. We are a progressive church and open and affirming of LGBT community. As far as youth. We have 5 teenagers from 4 different schools in the area. We have a lot of children and will diffently be growing the youth program. As of now we are don't have an "active" youth program but the teens are engaged in the Mosaic community. They help with children, go on excursions and attend a summer camp. I personally have a heart for teens and would like to develop something for our teens. Come check us out sometime.

My family and I attend All Souls Episcopal in Berkeley. It is a wonderful church, with a very active youth group for middle and high-schoolers. The teens are involved in a variety of activities, from formation to immersion trips (Standing Rock, Katrina relief, for example), helping with open door dinners for the homeless people in the community, etc. The church is very welcoming, inclusive progressive. We have many LGTB families and people from many roads and in many stages in their faith. We participate in many social justice activities, such as prayer vigils at the ICE detention center, programs for foster youth, participation in the Women´s march, and many other. The service itself has great preaching and great music (and when you visit, people tend to be warm and welcoming, without being pushy).