Ministries that send us out to serve in irvine, orange county, and the ends of the earth

partners in ministry

We have a special connection with Families Forward which is Irvine's best outreach to families seeking self-sufficiency and success.  UUMC members are on staff and on the board.  Among us are major donors and consistent, committed volunteers.  Halo Award-winning volunteer Carol Pukli is in charge of letting us know when FF needs to replenish its food pantry, prepare children for school, or help out with the holidays.

Learn More at Irvine And Orange County

  Aids Walk

  Supports AIDS treatment in Orange County

  OC Rescue Mission

  Twin Sheet Collection

  Oasis International

  After-school arts mentoring

  Assistance League of Irvine

  Supports Irvine students through thrift store

  Santa Ana Armory Emergency Shelter

  Food and shelter for homeless neighbors

  Emergency Response Teams

  Training to prepare for emergencies the Ends of the Earth

Clergy Against Alzheimers

Raising awareness and advocating for a cure

Concern America

Developing health care in Central America

Minami-Sanriku Tsunami Recovery

Churches working to rebuild sister city in Japan


Imagine No Malaria

Working with African governments to supply nets

Claudia Genung - UMC Missionary to Japan

UMC Worldwide Missions

April 2017 Mission Trip to Weed, California

Teams from University UMC called to serve our friends in Northern California

2017 Mission trip to weed, CA

The Weed Long Term Recovery Group in northern California has been working in conjunction with Siskiyou Habitat for Humanity to help those who still have unmet needs as a result of a devastating fire in September 2014. The fire destroyed parts of the town, two churches, and 136 homes. A combined mission team of 15 from University UMC (Irvine), Aldersgate UMC (Tustin) and an individual from San Carlos UMC (San Diego) joined together to provide much needed time and talent to the recovery project. Wood forms for concrete foundations were built for a detached garage and another home with an attached garage. Being part of the cement pour crew was exciting, as the team had never participated in that kind of work before. They got to see the results of their labor after the boards were removed from the cement foundation of the detached garage.  Other activities included surveying an empty lot for a new home; general cleaning and painting of the interior of a 3-bedroom Habitat house nearing completion; building a handicap ramp; assisting with a wall removal in the Habitat warehouse and various other projects at the warehouse. Even though the weather was at times cold, windy, rainy and even some snow, the team worked through it all. Our outstanding cook crew provided the team with excellent meals that provided the stamina to work in difficult conditions. The hospitality and warmth of the people we worked with were a blessing. There are not many worksites that provide an outstanding view. There is, however, snow-covered Mt. Shasta looming over the worksite at Weed. Weed is at the base of Mt. Shasta.


missionary to japan

The Rev. Claudia Genung –Yamamoto is a missionary with the General Board of Global  Ministries of The United Methodist Church assigned to ministries of community outreach and church development in Kobe, Japan. She assumed these responsibilities in late 2011 after serving for two decades as a missionary with the National Christian Council of Japan in Tokyo (NCC-J).

Claudia works with the Kobe Jesus Band Church and its community ministry through Kagawa Memorial Center. Rev. Toyohiko Kagawa, an eminent Japanese Christian leader, founded the church in 1909. The Kagawa Center ministers to the spiritual and psychical needs of the people in Kobe, which is an international port.

The Center has a café (Tengokuya Heaven’s Café), museum, day care, tutoring program for foreign children in Japanese schools, food distribution bi-monthy through a local food bank, after school program for disabled children, programs for single mothers and their children, and offers various seminars to the community. The weekly café provides low-cost lunches where all are welcome, and the monthly Night Café donates funds to help with ongoing disaster relief in Fukushima prefecture, where the 2011 earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear power plant explosion occurred.

The Jesus Band Church, where Claudia is an associate pastor, is part of the United Church of Christ in Japan (UCCJ),that continues the work of Methodism in Japan. She has started a new international congregation, which worships every other month. 

Claudia is active in mission and ecumenical affairs. She was president of the Tokyo Ecumenical Council in Tokyo and now networks with other churches in Kobe. She is a member of Peace and Nature, an NPO in Kobe and  Second Harvest Japan in Tokyo. She serves on the AFARI (American Friends of Asian Rural Institute) and helps the ARI Kansai Caravan when they come to the Kobe, Kyoto, and Osaka area each year. She works with the Global Missions at Kobe Union Church and helps coordinate a ministry with the homeless in Kobe.

Claudia’s husband Rev. Toshimasa Yamamoto isa GBGM VIM (Volunteer In Mission)and former General Secretary of NCC-J as well as a former Global Ministries missionary. Toshi now works as a chaplain and professor at Kwansei Gakuin University. He has authored books and articles on ecumenism and peace in Northeast Asia. Claudia and Tohsi husband are both concerned about peace in our world today.

They are the parents of two grown sons.