Justice, Fairness, Respect For All


Sunday mornings at First Congregational are designed to enhance the spiritual life of members and visitors alike.

Contact us to learn more about First Congregational.


Contact us to learn more about First Congregational.

Most Sundays at 9:00 am, First Congregational holds our Adult Forum, which offers programs designed to encourage participants to explore new ideas and deepen their religious faith.

Congregants and visiting presenters provide lectures, videos, and discussions examining multiple aspects of spirituality, philosophy, other religions, Scriptural topics, health-related subjects, and more. All points of view are encouraged at this open exchange of ideas and views; there is no “correct” doctrine. Everyone, including visitors, is welcome to attend.

I came first to the Ashley Lecture Series and remember thinking any church that would have such interesting and challenging speakers must be special. So I came back to a service or two and went to a few Adult Forums. Consistently, I have been intellectually engaged by First Congregational's commitment to questioning, thinking, and life-long spiritual growth.

Roger Smith


July 15: Checking In

Facilitator: Larry Anderson


It’s good to check-in with each other every so often.  Minister and psychologist Larry Anderson will lead us in a time of sharing the good things that we see happening in our church, any concerns that we may have, ways to support the ministry of our church and our own spiritual growth, and consider how we can support each other in better and better ways.

July 22: The Ethics and Economics of Helathcare for All

Facilitator: Kyla Moore

What did Jesus say about caring for the sick and poor?  Is it moral to deny healthcare because someone lacks the money to pay for the healthcare they need?  Do we have a moral responsibility to help the sick?  Is there a way to provide healthcare to absolutely all U.S. residents? In her discussion Kyra Moore urges congregations to see a moral imperative in being involved in the cause of healthcare for all.

Kyra Moore earned her Master’s degree in education and worked for many years as a teacher.  She is the organizer for the local group, People for Healthcare for Everyone.  She is a member of Healthcare for All WNC, Physician for a National Health Program, and Health Over Profit for Everyone.

July 29: The Best Three Months of Life: Creating a Beautiful End of Life Experience

Facilitator: Diane Swift


If you were told that you have only three months to live, what would you want those three months to look like?  What is your current reality?  Death is inevitable and most of us find it difficult to talk about it, but this final transition can be the most meaningful time of one’s life.  This talk will provide an opportunity to examine five domains of life essential to prepare for dying: spiritual, emotional, mental, (your legacy), physical and practical after-death issues.  Diane will bring insight, warmth, understanding, and, perhaps, some humor to this discussion.


Diane Swift was a psychotherapist for forty years.  She is an ordained minister, a prayer chaplain at Unity Church and FCUCC and an Associate member of First Congregational Church.  She recently was certified as a Sacred Passage Doula by the Conscious Dying Institute to assist those preparing for the end of life and those who are grieving.

Contact us to learn more about First Congregational. 


Contact us to learn more about First Congregational. 

Our worship service is a balance of participation among our pastor, the lay leader for the Sunday, and the congregation. Each Sunday, beginning at 10:30 am, the pastor offers a sermon based on a scripture reading, often connecting the passage to current events. We believe that Jesus had a passion for social justice and mission, and so does our pastor. It would not be unusual to hear him speak out against the denial of civil rights due to racism, sexism, and homophobia; inequality of opportunity and income; abuse of the environment; violence and war, and other injustices that contribute to brokenness in a world that needs healing.

Worship is enhanced by a variety of musical offerings, including our choir, member instrumentalists, and guest musicians from the community.

I finally found a church in which my understanding of God has been stretched, my experience of God’s spirit enlarged. In this place I feel surrounded by folks who take Jesus’ message seriously. I am so grateful to be part of this loving community.

Charlotte Shipley


lifts spirits...offers hope...inspires joy...

expresses love...

nurtures potential...creates unity...praises God

                                                               Music Heals + Beauty Heals + Love Heals

                                                     These three simple phrases guide the work of our choir.

The choir rehearses each Thursday afternoon from 3:30 to 5:00. Members of our choir family are enthusiastic,

committed, encouraging, and welcoming to all. Read about the joy being in the choir has brought to one of our members.

Membership in the choir is open to everyone, high school through adult; members of the church and friends from the 

community are all welcome.

We sing a variety of literature in our 10:30 worship service each Sunday, from traditional classical anthems to spirituals

to songs of social justice.

Instrumentalists both from within our church and our community are also a regular part of our Sunday gatherings.

To learn more about the choir and other musical opportunities, call our Minister of Music, Mark Acker, at 615-430-3506.

Contact us to learn more about First Congregational.


Contact us to learn more about First Congregational. 

We provide a child-centered, caring facility for children during the worship service, including nursery, childcare, and a Sunday School program that uses the Progressive Christianity curriculum, incorporating free play time with guided instruction in basic Christian values through stories and activities.

First Congregational is what my husband and I were looking for in a church community...a place to question, a place to reflect, and a place to take action. My children get to experience the support and love of an open and affirming community and are taught values not just literal biblical stories. As a couple in our 40s, many of our peers have left organized religion. First Congregational is a place where we can raise our children by modeling social justice, inclusion, environmental stewardship, and progressive Christianity.

Kirsten Cone


Each Sunday after worship, congregants and visitors gather for coffee hour. Members volunteer to host and provide refreshments, while the church supplies fair-trade coffee. This special gathering offers opportunities to welcome newcomers, to experience the warmth of fellowship, and to be an integral part of church life.

Contact us to learn more about First Congregational.


The Church has ample parking on each side of the building, including reserved spots for visitors.

Handicapped parking is located in both lots. The building is also accessible to wheelchairs and to people with special needs. During Worship, hearing devices and large print bulletins are available.

Contact us to learn more about First Congregational.


We are located in Laurel Park at the corner of Fifth Avenue and White Pine Road. This interactive map provides directions to the church from your location.


Contact us to learn more about First Congregational.