Worship 10:30 a.m.

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


February 3:  Climate Change and the Sacred Earth - Part Two

Facilitator:   Charley & Pam Rogers

In this second of three Forums on the subject, Pam and Charley Rogers will be showing information from Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming. Edited by Paul Hawken and a New York Times Bestseller, it was compiled by a coalition of 70 scientists and researchers from 22 countries. The presenters just returned from a Florida workshop on the book.


Pam and Charley Rogers have coordinated The Heart of Hendersonville project and are experts in Compassionate Listening. They have presented to our church several times including coordinating our last Retreat. Charley was also active in Beyond War, an international peace movement.


February 10:  Climate Change and the Sacred Earth

Spirituality and Activism:  A Personal Exploration - Part Three            

Facilitator:   Melissa Melum

The presentation will continue the discussion of spirituality and activism as a personal exploration, incorporating a discussion of food and food waste.

 Melissa Melum is a life-long environmental activist and wild life enthusiast.  She was the project lead for the solar initiative at FCUCC, which got off the ground following a Forum discussion of the book Cooler Smarter in the summer of 2013. A registered nurse and certified diabetes educator, she recognizes the multifaceted issues and opportunities for positive change related to our relationship with food.  Melissa also heads the church’s Visioning Sacred Grounds group.


February 17:  A Return Trip to China      

Facilitator:   John Bodamer

China is the world’s most populous country and has the second largest economy.  The Chinese have made tremendous progress since the “opening” of their economy in 1979.  Yet, despite this opening up, the Chinese Communist Party remains firmly in control.  Both the economy and the political system remain a mystery for most of us.  What happens next in China is sure to have a substantial impact on the whole world.

John and Karel recently toured China and Tibet.  In November they gave a forum presentation that focused on their experiences in China (with lots of pictures).  There is still a lot more to explore and John will lead a discussion on China Today from a macro-economic and geo-political perspective.  The focus this time will be on how China transformed their economy, what we might expect next from their current leadership, and some thoughts on the US-China rivalry.

John is a long time member of FCUCC and a lifelong learner with interests in history and economics. This will be his fourth Adult Forum presentation.  Expect an interesting presentation (and perhaps some pictures) that will hopefully fill in some blanks as well as raise new questions.


February 24:  When Your Art is Your Prayer:  Seeing Your Art As Your Soul's Deepest Prayer  

Facilitator:   Larry Anderson

“In the artist’s life of the imagination there is a vision and adventure and the discovery of new worlds.  An artist’s masterpiece is… a new world of meaning expressed in terms of abiding beauty, be it in marble or paint or words or musical tone.  And in this great vision we are privileged to share.  To see eye to eye with a great artist is to expand and enrich the world in which we live.”

Radoslav A. Tsanoff 


“Creativity brings hope; science shows that a creative state awakens endorphins in our brain that make us happy.  So art as meditation brings hope and the energy to act that goes with it.” Matthew Fox.  Psychologist Caludio Naranjo rightly called art meditation.                         


Larry Anderson will lead us in a discussion of how art forms help us grow and change spiritual expression.  Could this forum be the beginning of an on-going exploration of this topic with our congregation of poetry writing, singing and dancing, praying and acting pioneers?


March 3:  Healthy Living for Your Brain and Body (Avoiding Dementia)

Facilitator:   Ralph Miller

Details forthcoming


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.

If needed, there is overflow parking available across the street (White Pine & 5th) at the Laurel Park Town Hall and the Park.

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.