What We Believe & Affiliations

The Riverside Church in the City of New York is an inter-denominational church, influential on the nation’s religious and political landscapes. We are an interdenominational, interracial, international, open, welcoming, and affirming church and congregation. Whoever you are: You are safe here. You are loved here. You are invited into full participation in our life together.

The Riverside Church in the City of New York seeks to be a community of faith. Its members are united in the worship of God known in Jesus, the Christ, through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. The mission of the Church is to serve God through word and witness; to treat all human beings as sisters and brothers; and to foster responsible stewardship of all God’s creation.

Riverside commits itself to welcoming all persons, celebrating the diversity found in a congregation broadly inclusive of persons from different backgrounds of characteristics, including race, economic class, religion, culture, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, family status, and physical and mental abilities. Members are called to an individual and collective quality of life that leads to personal, spiritual and social transformation, witnessing to God’s saving purposes for all creation. Therefore, the Church pledges itself to education, reflection, and action for peace and justice and the realization of the vision of the heavenly banquet where all are loved and blessed.

Approved by the Religious Society of The Riverside Church on May, 1992; Revised: March, 2008

Denominational Affiliations

American Baptist Churches USA
United Church of Christ

Interdenominational Affiliations

The Council of Churches of the City of New York
National Council of Churches

Membership & Governance

The Riverside Church has 1,750 members and affiliates from more than 40 denominational, national, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds. Learn more about becoming a member.

The Church Council, comprised of 18 elected members of the congregation, and many other lay leaders are responsible for the spiritual well-being, fiscal matters, and property of the church, while overseeing commissions and committees. Learn more about current lay leadership and opportunities to serve.

By-Laws of The Riverside Church in the City of New York (PDF)
Riverside Church Whistleblower Policy (PDF)
Riverside Church Confidentiality and Grievance Policy (PDF)

Faith-Based Proclamations

Throughout its history, The Riverside Church has made a number of faith-based proclamations, statements or resolutions affirming our position on important public policy issues and strong commitment to social justice. Those include:

Statement on Torture
Resolution Against Genocide in Sudan
Statement Advocating for Issues of Domestic Concern

Statement Against the Death Penalty
Statement Achieving Peace and Justice: An Alternative to War
Statement Affirming Same-Gender Civil Marriage
Statement of Commitment to Be Sustainable Earth Community Congregation
Statement of Openness, Inclusion, and Affirmation of Gay or Lesbian Persons