Who We Are at the Heart
Goleta Presbyterian Church is a warm and welcoming Christian church characterized by an open-minded embracing of questions about faith and tradition, acceptance of human diversity, a strong emphasis on social justice and care for the poor and the oppressed, and environmental stewardship of the earth.
One of the most-cited, most highly valued characteristics of the GPC congregation is the warmth and sense of welcoming hospitality that members share with one another and toward visitors. Authenticity of community is often cited by congregants who appreciate the support they have experienced from others during times of psychological, physical, and emotional challenges, such as illness, hospitalization, and bereavement, and also during times of joy and celebration, such as baptisms and weddings.
GPC has long prided itself on being a mission-oriented church with many active missions within the church, the local community and the world.
A former temporary pastor declared us "the kindest church in Santa Barbara County." Come see!
Mission - Oriented
We are a mission-oriented church and seek to maintain a critical awareness of how well the church and the wider society serve “the least of these.” Locally we are active with Transition House, Community Kitchen, Isla Vista Youth Project, and Alzheimer’s Walk. For over 20 years we have offered a semi-annual "Love of God" retreat for youth from our church and wider community. We have a sister relationship with a Presbyterian church in Patriensa, Ghana. Donations from GPC helped build a bakery there, where a number of people are employed and which serves not only the local community but surrounding communities as well. Members of the Patriensa church have visited with us here more than once, and members of GPC have visited them in Ghana.
When we built our new sanctuary we sold a portion of our property at a below-market price to the Cerebral Palsy Foundation. Thirteen permanent housing units were built where a number of CP-affected people have found homes. Several of these residents have become active participants in our church.
We are a community of faith seeking to know and serve Jesus Christ and to do his work in the world with committed hearts, open minds and willing hands.
Within the context of this vision, we affirm the following goals and objectives:
• To create worship services that change lives by bringing the truth and power of God into everyday life through word, music, and prayer
• To touch children's lives with the love and teachings of Christ through nursery care, Christian education, and the opportunity to participate in worshipful music, arts and service
• To offer Junior and Senior High youth joyful, engaging, and meaningful experiences that give them a life-long Christian foundation
• To help people of the Congregation identify and use the gifts God has given them
• To inform, educate, and challenge the Congregation through classes and learning opportunities
• To care for each other especially in times of need and to celebrate with one another in times of joy
• To enrich our Christian identity by participating in dialog, community service and educational activities with members of other faiths and communities
• To be a Christian witness to our local community by participating in programs to provide food, labor, hospitality, and social services
• To share our faith with others through example and respectful evangelism, and to welcome them warmly to our church family
• To support mission causes around the world dedicated to peace, justice, healing, and social wellness