125 Years Celebrating Our Witness

Rooted in the past with a vision for our future:
Growing in Faith,
Singing in Hope,
Acting in Love.

We celebrated 125 years of our faith community on February 20, 2011.

Leading up to February, the Session and the Celebration Committee coordinated various events and opportunities to learn about out Presbyterian traditions, the history of our faith community and who we are as a people of God.

This was an intergenerational celebration! There were opportunities to learn our history, listen to fabulous speakers, and enjoy music of the ages.

Our first event was our FPC Time Capsule.  Each person was invited to provide one item that would let the future Firsties know who we were or what we have done. In addition everyone was given an envelope addressed to “Future First Presbyterian Church Members” and was encouraged to describe why they thought FPC is important to the present and future of the church and our community. We filled our time capsule with our memories and surprises for future generations.

Alan Hogle developed an extensive biography of FPC’s history. The booklet is titled “A Changing Church in a Changing World.” The booklet includes a look at all of the pastors of FPC – Called and Installed Pastors, Interim Pastor and Stated Supply Pastor.

He had email conversations with each of the Student Interns who served FPC since 1980 and includes their insights in the Appendix of the booklet. Alan was our Celebration History Coordinator and assisted the Celebration Coordinators in preparing the various events to coincide with our history.

We encouraged everyone to take part in the celebration. The following Celebration Coordinators were enlisted and the description of the hard work of the committees is noted below.

History Celebration Committee

Celebration Coordinators – Rev. Alan and Elder Teddy Hogle
  • Developed the comprehensive FPC History Book to be available for purchase by FPC members and friends
  • Developed the FPC History Booklet
  • Developed an area in the Church Library for historical memorabilia

Media Celebration Committee

Celebration Coordinator – Elder Seth Craigo-Snell
  • Enlisted videographer to video the events of the celebration
  • Coordinated pictures from the congregation to create a “picture of our history” on a DVD with music
  • Scanned all the pictures submitted from members
  • Enlisted someone to create the “picture of our history” DVD
  • Coordinated the “Picture of the Congregation”
  • Coordinated a “Picture Book” of all the present members of FPC – family/member snapshots

Fall Events Celebration Committee

Celebration Coordinator – Elder Paul Turner
  • Coordinated at least 2 events to lead up to FPC History Month in January
  • Music concert – 125 years of church music
  • Presbyterian History – sessions/series sharing our heritage and how it relates to New Haven

Worship Celebration Committee

Celebration Coordinator– Elder Justin Ray
  • Developed the “Minute of Reflection” series – members sharing 3-5 minutes of history during service. This was done periodically through the fall and during FPC History Month
  • Assisted pastors in developing the worship services to focus on our history
  • Assisted in the development of the Celebration Worship on 2/20/11

Luncheon Celebration Committee

Celebration Coordinator – Elder Mary Webber
  • Coordinated the celebration luncheon
  • Coordinated the activities/ceremony for the luncheon


FPC History Month Celebration Committee

Celebration Coordinator – Elder Rona Gordon
  • Assisted in the events of history month – working with the other coordinators
  • Developed a plan to support the FPC History Month from 1/1/11-2/20/11
Written Communication Coordinator – Elders Jim and Betty Whitney
  • Articles for bulletin, Inkling, newspapers
  • Letters to pastors and interns inviting letters of where they are, congrats and reflection.
  • Letters requesting greetings from the President, the Governor, the Mayor, Senators and Representatives
  • Letters to Presbytery, Synod and General Assembly – recognizing the Anniversary

Beth Aura Miller was the Chair of the FPC 125th Celebration.