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About Us

Who are we at First Presbyterian of Ashland?

We are a very diverse community of people called together to "love kindness, do justice and walk humbly with our God." At First Presbyterian Church, you will meet people from all walks of life: college students, professional folk, homeless persons, artists, musicians, young families, octogenarians, children, singles, married, to name a few - and at all stages on the spiritual path.
 

How do we worship on Sundays?

You will find a variety of people at worship – different ages and styles of dress but all interested in spiritual growth and fellowship.

 

We have two worship services most Sundays: intimate, abbreviated communion service in the Heritage Chapel at 8 am and Sanctuary worship with a variety of music styles at 10 am.

 

A friendly greeter will welcome you, and the ushers will offer you a worship bulletin and announcement sheet. Kids' bulletins with activities and a bag of crayons and other items are available from an usher.

 

At the 8 am Heritage Chapel service, we gather in an intimate space with three walls of stained glass windows from the historic First Presbyterian Church of Ashland. This service includes much of the content of the later service in a more abbreviated manner. We sing one hymn. The Lord’s Supper is served each time we worship. Each week those gathered share joys and concerns in prayer. After this approximately 45-minute service, many people head downtown to Pony Espresso for coffee and conversation.

 

Most Sundays at the 10 am Sanctuary service, the readings, songs and other worship materials are projected on the large screen in the front of the church. Please select a seat where you can clearly see the screen.

 

Music is played by Laurie Anne Hunter on the piano, organ, harp and other instruments, and singing is led by the song leader. Frequently during the summer, guest musicians offer gifts of music.

 

A member of the church shares worship leadership with the pastor, leading us through litanies and unison prayers (the part the people speak is always big and bold) and reading scripture lessons.

 

Following the 10 o’clock service we move to Calvin Hall (the building closest to Walker Street) for fellowship time. We enjoy conversation! Most weeks, refreshment hosts offer snack choices with a gluten free option. On Second Sundays, we celebrate all birthdays and anniversaries for the month.

 

Our Mission Statement

We are a faith community, centered in Christ, doing justice, loving kindness and walking humbly with God.
 

Our Vision Statement

Open Minds: We develop programs and practices that encourage spiritual growth and explore our relationships within the body of Christ.
 
Open Hands: We believe in the biblical call to serve. We put our faith into action and commit our time and gifts to promote social justice, peacemaking, and stewardship of God's creation.
 
Open Hearts: We honor the value and dignity of each person.
 
Open Table: We are an inclusive, open and affirming community. We welcome all people.
 

Welcoming and Affirming

We affirm that there can be no exclusiveness within the body of Christ. In 2009, the Session of our church adopted the following welcoming and affirming statement to invite all to participate fully in the life of this faith community:
 
We believe that each individual is of sacred worth. We pledge ourselves to engage in the sacred hospitality and responsibility Christ taught us. We commit ourselves to maintaining a place of safety and sanctuary for all races, cultures, ages, sexual orientations, family structures, economic situations, and mental or physical conditions. Through the grace of Christ, we dedicate ourselves to live out these commitments creatively, lovingly, humbly and with hope.
 

Core Values

During a lengthy discernment process, our above mission statement was written setting forth eight core values. As the body of Christ in its many manifestations:
  • We celebrate diverse worship styles.
  • We nurture our church community and are actively involved in our wider community.
  • We promote education and value dialogue over dogma.
  • We put our faith into action through mission and support of social justice and peace.
  • We encourage faith exploration and spiritual growth.
  • We express our faith creatively.
  • We value children and youth and respect their gifts.
  • We are Presbyterians connected to the greater church.

Who are we as The Presbyterian Church (USA)?

"In gratitude to God, empowered by the Spirit,
we strive to serve Christ in our daily tasks
and to live holy and joyful lives,
even as we watch for God's new heaven
and new earth praying, 'Come, Lord Jesus.'"
From "A Brief Statement of Faith" in The Book of Confessions
 
First Presbyterian Church of Ashland is a congregation of The Presbyterian Church (USA), a distinctly confessional and connectional denomination. Presbyterians adhere to a pattern of religious thought known as Reformed theology and follow a form of government that stresses the active, representational leadership of both ministers and church members. Visit Presbyterian 101 to learn more about our history, theology and who we are.
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