Who We Are

Clarendon Presbyterian Church is a progressive, diverse, and inclusive church community located in the heart of the Clarendon neighborhood of Arlington, Va., just two blocks from the Clarendon Metro station.  

We are a congregation in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and a member of National Capital Presbytery. We’re also members of the More Light Presbyterians network of congregations, working for the full participation of LGBTQ people of faith in the life of the church.

We are young and old, straight and gay, singles, couples and families of all kinds. Some of us are life-long Presbyterians. Some come from other Protestant denominations or were raised Roman Catholic or come from other faith traditions. And some of us are altogether new to a faith community. 

We are a vibrant congregation of approximately 90 members and friends, and we strive to be a church that welcomes and celebrates all people. If you have questions or suggestions about inclusion or accessibility, please contact Pastor Alice.

What we Believe

Our Mission Statement:  Following the Spirit’s call to go into the world with love, joy, and creativity, we are a  community of faith following the way of Jesus in solidarity with marginalized and  disenfranchised people doing justice, loving mercy, and walking humbly with God.  We seek companions on the journey from all* walks of life. 

*All means all: all races, ages, genders, orientations, classes, convictions and  questions.

As a PCUSA church, we look to the Book of Confessions for guidance including the Presbyterian Brief Statement of Faith.

Love for All

For our community members who fear that your right to marriage may be in jeopardy, we are here for you. We see you. We wholeheartedly support the right for same gender-loving people to get married. 

We are also here to hold you in prayer, whatever anxieties grip your heart at this moment. We are here to do more than hold, as we commit to fighting for the rights of all God's children, at the polls and in our neighborhoods. We continue to uphold the truth that we are all created in God's image. And we will never stop believing that love is love. 

Past to Present

Clarendon Presbyterian Church (CPC) has a long history of doing the right thing and speaking truth to power. In the ‘60s, CPC fought for civil rights, created protest kits for the Poor People’s Campaign in Washington, and became active in fair housing initiatives in Arlington County and D.C. In the ‘70s, we maintained a food pantry that later developed into AFAC – Arlington Food Assistance Center. During the ‘80s, CPC provided space in our building for Whitman Walker Clinic to hold AIDS support groups as the epidemic surged. 

In the ‘90s, CPC elected the first openly gay Elder in Virginia before it was actually "legal" in the Presbyterian Church, and we became a More Light congregation. In the following decade, we supported the fight for marriage equality. We instituted a Marriage Policy whereby our Pastor offered religious blessings (of marriages and same-sex unions) but would not function as an agent of the state until Virginia legalized gay marriage, resulting in significant national media publicity, letters of support, death threats, and financial donations from all over the country. 

In more recent years, nearly three-quarters of our members gathered annually through Rebuilding Together to rehabilitate homes for local families with low incomes. We converted our sanctuary and other spaces in our church building to host periodic Naturalization Workshops and assist legal immigrants along the path to U.S. citizenship. We regularly attend organized demonstrations, including the Women’s March on Washington, the March for Our Lives in support of legislation to prevent gun violence , and the annual D.C. Pride Parade. And in recent years, we launched a wide variety of partnerships with a focus on serving alongisde others especially those who have been marginalized.