Do you have questions about what it means to be Presbyterian? Have you wondered about the history of our particular church? Perhaps you have contemplated membership and are wondering what it entails? If so, we would like to invite you to consider joining us for our quarterly membership class on Sunday, January 20th at 9:45 am. Our membership class is an excellent opportunity for you to learn more about our history and our values, how our past has shaped us and how we believe God is leading our church in the present. Attendees will have the opportunity to learn about the various ministries of our church, as well as meet with representatives from our leadership team. We will be providing lunch, so we ask that you kindly RSVP to Sarah Weisiger if you are interested in attending.
A Welcome Reception
The Membership & Evangelism Committee is sponsoring a special event in Old Buttonwood Hall to welcome many of the new faces in our midst. If you are a visitor, a friend, a potential new member, or someone who has joined within the last year, we invite you to come for an informal reception. Our Elders, Deacons and Trustees will be there, so it's a great time to meet the folks who serve on the boards of the church, ask them questions, or volunteer to get involved. Most importantly, it is an opportunity to drop by after work, meet other new faces at the church, and get to know each other in a relaxed atmosphere. There will be plenty of appetizers and great conversation! Feel free to drop in when you can and stay as long as you wish! If you plan to attend, please email the church office.
What does Baron Think?
The Women of Wit and Wisdom will find out at our brown bag lunch on Thursday, January 10th at 12 noon in Old Buttonwood Hall. Our new pastor, The Rev. Dr. Baron Mullis, graciously has agreed to a Q&A session. Topics of discussion may range from the depths of doctrine to tiresome tasks and everything in between. This event is not to be missed—an excellent opportunity to get to know Baron better, along with his theology, both practical and spiritual, and to express whatever thoughts, ideas, and matters of interest we may have. Please email to RSVP. Bring your lunch and beverages will be served. Join us for this enlightening experience.
After the 11 o’clock service, join us for our monthly brunch at the Irish Pub. We will meet in Old Buttonwood Hall following the service. If this is your first time, join us as our guest. For information, please contact Annie LeCluyse.
All are invited to join First Church in bringing holiday cheer to the residents of Riverside Presbyterian Apartments. Volunteers are needed for entertainment—singing, playing an instrument, reading a story or poem, or being a song leader. We also need volunteers to provide food (baked goods, hummus/pita, crudités, pretzels or crackers). If you would like to volunteer, please contact Jordana Woodford or the church office.
Advent and Christmas are not always seasons of joy for everyone. For many who mourn, who are anxious, afraid, or who feel alone, this can be a very difficult time. First Church is offering a service of quiet meditation and reflection to bring light into the darkness. All are invited.
One of the highlights of the Advent season at First Church is the annual Advent luncheon, hosted by the Deacons, immediately following the 11 am worship service in Old Buttonwood Hall. All are welcome to attend and no reservations are necessary. The Deacons will provide the main dish and dessert. Last names A-M please bring a vegetable or salad; names ending N-Z please bring a starch such as a potato dish or macaroni and cheese, or applesauce. For questions, please email Linda Deis or Jean Witmer.
Please join us on Tuesday, November 27, 1:00 pm, in the MacColl Room, to write welcome and Christmas greetings to those in our congregation who are recent visitors and new members. They are indeed members of our First Church Family! There’s no need to RSVP; just come! This will also be a time of Christian Sister fellowship. Coffee and tea will be provided. Please note there will be no December event. A joyful and blessed Holy Season to all!
On Tuesday, November 20th, at 7 p.m. join neighborhood and faith communities and the Bethesda Project for Thanksgiving in Action, an interfaith Thanksgiving celebration to address homelessness at the Church of the Holy Trinity, 1904 Walnut Street (Rittenhouse Square). There will be a free-will offering to benefit Bethesda Project programs.
Our final casserole blitz of the year will be held between 8:30 and 10:30 am on Saturday, November 17 in the church kitchen (ring the buzzer and enter through the 21st St. door). As always, these casseroles will be used to feed those in need through the University City Hospitality Coalition. We have a lot of fun, enjoying coffee, doughnuts and fellowship—and leave knowing we’ve accomplished something good for our community. If interested, please contact Beverly Cowart.
The Women of Wit and Wisdom are hosting a fun family dinner for women on Friday, November 16 @ 6 pm in Old Buttonwood Hall. We invite you to come on your own and get better acquainted with your First Pres family, or bring a family member (mother, daughter, niece, sister, etc.), someone from our church community, or a friend.
Lively music will be provided by the Vance Camisa Jazz Trio as we mix and mingle and share family stories with each other. After our meal, the Reverend Margaret Somerville will share highlights from the 2018 Parliament of World Religions, where she will be a presenter. She will reflect on interfaith relations and there will be opportunity for questions. For those of you who do not know Margaret, not only is she a “cradle Presbyterian”, she’s a cradle First Presbyterian!
Please bring a photo or two of a family member or members to share with others so we can enjoy hearing about each other’s background. (You can bring a picture of a woman outside of your family who has inspired you, if you prefer.) We are also asking that each of you (or you and your guest together) bring something to share for the meal. The main course and beverages will be provided, and we’re asking you to provide appetizers, salads, and desserts. More details will follow so watch your emails and letter boxes!
Join us for this autumn potluck social, and go into the holiday season inspired and invigorated! For information email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Concerts@First presents “Digging Up Old Bones”
Missa Solemnis in C (Joseph Senn 1810-1882) for Choir, Orchestra, and Soloists.
Joseph Senn was the great, great, great grandfather of Director of Music and Organist Andrew Senn. Andrew spent more than a year searching for the music of Joseph Senn, and he was able to Missa Solemnis at the University of Tübingen in Germany; it was a large scale work for choir, orchestra and soloists. Over this past summer, Andrew took on the laborious task of creating a modern performing edition from the original parts. On November 11th at 7 pm the choir with many friends, along with an orchestra of 22 players will bring Joseph Senn’s Missa Solemnis to life in a concert celebrating Andrew’s 40th birthday!
This concert will also conclude our Concerts@First fundraiser, and will be a ticketed event. There will be a celebratory reception following, where Andrew will have copies of the original parts on display. Tickets will be available for $10 in advance from the church office, or $15 at the door.
On-street parking for the concert will be available.
Join Camp Sojourner for a volunteer day on Saturday November 10, where we will help put the farm to bed for the winter. You will also get the opportunity to get to know some of the girls First Church helps to send to Camp Sojourner: Girls Leadership Camp.
9:30 am - Meet at Bartram's Garden, 5400 Lindbergh Ave, at the entrance to parking lot. Name game and overview of why we are at the farm
10 am - 12 pm - Help with the farm
12 - 1:30 pm - Lunch and food justice conversation
If interested, please contact the Missions Committee (email@example.com).
The Young Adults are now the Twenties and Thirties, or T&T. It’s the same group with a new name! After the 11 o’clock service, join us for our monthly brunch at the Irish Pub. We will meet in Old Buttonwood Hall following the service. If this is your first time, join us as our guest.
The Missions Committee is sponsoring a Missions Fair during Fellowship Hour on Sunday, November 4. Eight or nine of the ministries and non-profits we support through your generous donations will be available to talk to you about the work they do and volunteer opportunities they have to offer. As an added inducement, special refreshments will be available. Please take this opportunity to get to know our missions work better!
Stand in Solidarity: An Interfaith Vigil
October 28, 2018 | 5 pm
Congregation Rodeph Shalom
615 N Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19123
Our hearts grieve for the Tree of Life synagogue community in Pittsburgh.
As gun shots and anti-Semitic vitriol pierced Shabbat morning worship, the lives of victims, the injured, their families, the first responders, and the surrounding community were shattered. This tragic incident sends ripples of fear throughout Jewish communities of this nation that was established to safeguard religious freedom.
On behalf of Interfaith Philadelphia and the Religious Leaders Council of Greater Philadelphia, we invite you to join in solidarity -- people of all faiths -- for, as Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, "when one of us suffers, we all suffer alike."
Please join us for an Interfaith Vigil, coordinated by the Jewish Community Relations Council of the Jewish Federation.
For our October event, Women of Wit & Wisdom will be showing the movie “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” in Old Buttonwood Hall, followed by discussion and light refreshments. The film features the well-beloved Fred Rogers of the TV series, “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood” and takes us into the heart of a creative genius who inspired generations of children with compassion and limitless imagination. Rogers was a musician, puppeteer, writer, producer, and Presbyterian minister whose sweet-tempered idealism influenced the world.
Don’t miss this treasure of a film. And, yes, you may bring a friend!
Please RSVP by October 16 to firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Sunday, October 14, 2018, members of the Presbytery of Philadelphia will join with us in our 11 am service of worship to install the Rev. Dr. Baron A. Mullis as the 17th pastor of The First Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia.
The Reverend Paul Roberts Sr., President of Johnson C. Smith Theological Seminary, will be the preacher. Johnson C. Smith is our denomination’s only historically black seminary, and Baron serves as a trustee. Rev. Roberts is a much sought after nationally known preacher and speaker.