Month: April 2019

April 30, 2019

On May 14 and May 16, we will host the first-ever book swap at Westerly Hills Academy.  Since December 2018, in partnership with Read Charlotte, we have provided Westerly Hills students with more than 6,000 books to take home. This event will allow students to bring in up to five books and swap them for different books to read over the summer, when reading is so important.

Sign up here to help sort books prior to the swap and assist K-2 students on May 14 and grades 3-5 students on May 16. You may sign up to volunteer.  In addition, we will collect new and gently used books appropriate for students who are in pre-K through grade 5, to provide variety for the students. Books may be given to volunteers on Sunday mornings or placed on the book cart in the hallway behind the sanctuary from April 28–May 12.

Please contact Heather Herring ( with questions.


Join us on Thursday, May 23, for our monthly First Fruits wine fellowship at Petit Philippe, 2820 Selwyn Ave. #160 (near Mellow Mushroom). Drop by 6-8 p.m. to meet new friends and old. All are welcome!

April 26, 2019

At 8:15 a.m. on a recent rainy Saturday, the guys at the Furniture Bank were preparing to make deliveries to two different households, a middle-aged man and an elderly woman. When I say rain, I mean serious rain! FPC’s Moving Ministry was on the scene, loading furniture, talking with the Furniture Bank team, who have become friends–real friends, with a genuine appreciation for one another. As we made our way to the two locations, the rain never let up. When we arrived, the look on the faces of the residents who were waiting for their furniture to arrive was nothing less than thankful surprise.

Think of this: not long ago, the two people now living in these two homes would have been outside in the rain, trying to find warmth and shelter under building structures, bridges, cardboard boxes, or just laid out wet and freezing on a city park bench.

To be able to follow through and make those deliveries in the rain was a reminder that God shows up even in one of his downpours!

The feeling of total thankfulness exhibited by the people who we helped that day was beyond words. We all felt it. To say “God bless you” as we left was as much a blessing to them as it was to us–we sure had been blessed.

The Moving Ministry invites you to be part of this awesome outreach ministry on the second Saturday of every month–our next delivery will be on May 11. It’s easy to sign up online, or just show up at 9 a.m. at the Crisis Assistance Ministry Furniture Bank, 333 Dalton Avenue.

I personally would love to see 20-somethings, 30-somethings, youth and anyone else bring their energy to this ministry that has operated for more than five years now. We grow each time we connect with our neighbors and with each other, and this program is definitely a place for great conversations.

If you’d like to read more about how deeply this experience touches the people involved, here’s an article that really demonstrates what I see every month. In my experience, the Moving Ministry is the best 90 minutes you will ever spend on a Saturday morning.

– Michael White

April 25, 2019

Join us this summer for To Mars & Beyond, a Vacation Bible School experience we we will help children discover the wonders of God’s universe. Exploring where God’s power can take them, they will become voyagers on a journey through space. June 24-27, 9:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

Registration is open to children who will be five years old by June 1 through fifth grade. Cost is $20/child. We don’t want anyone to miss VBS due to financial concerns, so please check the box for a confidential scholarship request when registering.

Childcare and preschool options are available for volunteers.

April 18, 2019

Both the Associate Pastor Nominating Committee and the committee overseeing the search for a Director of Outreach and Mission report that they are energized by the quality of the candidates as they conduct interviews for the two new roles. Please continue to keep the committees in prayer as they make progress in this process.

April 17, 2019

Pete Carlson has been named chairperson for the Capital Campaign Cabinet. Former chairperson Emily Johnson stepped down in mid-April to accommodate a heavier workload in her professional life.

“To be asked to lead in this way was one of the biggest honors I’ve ever received,” Emily said. “However, through prayerful consideration in recent weeks I’ve determined that I do not have the bandwidth to lead this campaign with the energy it deserves. I wholeheartedly believe in the scope and focus of this campaign and look forward to supporting this effort in my role as elder.”

The Reverend Pen Peery said, “We’re all sorry to lose Emily in this role. But I think all of us who juggle the demands of work and family understand.”

The Campaign Cabinet has, since its launch, hired Mary Scott Peterson as Campaign Director and has engaged a consultant to help determine the scope of the campaign.

Pete Carlson, who was already serving on the Campaign Cabinet, is an elder who is also chair of the Personnel Committee. He is also an active volunteer with Loaves & Fishes and Habitat for Humanity. About this shift on the Campaign Cabinet, he said, “Pen, the Cabinet and I thank Emily for her hard work to date and look forward to her counsel as an ongoing member of the Session. The Cabinet is actively engaged in assessing the scope and feasibility of a capital campaign, the first two directives from the Session. I am excited to continue working with the other Cabinet members as we help implement the vision in the church’s 2017 Strategic Plan.”


The front part of the library is now the church’s official  Welcome Center.

“We’re excited to dedicate some of this space to welcoming guests and providing a space for guests and members to learn more about First Presbyterian Church,” said Lucy Caldwell, Membership Development Coordinator. “We hope everyone will get into the habit of dropping by, especially when they bring visitors with them to a service.”

The Welcome Center will be open on Sundays at 9:45 a.m, and a tour of the church will leave from the Welcome Center at 10:30 a.m. each Sunday. And in addition to a big-screen TV where anyone can drop by to view the church’s welcome video and to review headline news about activities and events going on at the church, the new Welcome Center will be where Lucy has office hours during the week. All are invited to stop by.


April 16, 2019

Spring into a New Restaurant Routine is the topic when Charlotte historian Tom Hanchett speaks about little-known restaurants on April 25 at 6 p.m. Beverages and snacks from some of the restaurants will be available. Space is limited for this offisite event; contact the Reverend Mary Margaret Porter ( for details.

April 12, 2019

On Sunday,  May 19, you’re invited to join us for a Food Truck Lunch on the lawn immediately following the special Music Sunday worship service. Dress casually, bring a blanket or camp chair, and enjoy games, fellowship and food with your church family. Choose from JJ’s Red Hots (hot dogs) and Fresh Med (Mediterranean) for your main course, and then visit the Sticks and Cones truck for ice cream.

On Sunday, May 19, Will Young, the Sanctuary Choir and guest musicians will lead the special Music Sunday service, Tune Our Hearts, in the Sanctuary at 11 a.m. All are invited and welcomed. Immediately following this service, we will have a food truck lunch on the lawn with games and music. Dress casually, and don’t forget to bring a blanket or a camp chair!

And beginning this week, there will be no 9 a.m. service until September.