At First Congregational Church, whether you cross our threshold in person or virtually, you will enter a spiritual community with a long and rich history of encouraging freedom of thought and a strong commitment to supporting and serving those who are socially and economically disadvantaged.
Though FCC’s church building has been closed during this unprecedented challenging time, the clergy and lay leaders have remained committed to keeping church worship, programs and outreach open and available to FCC members and the larger community. Not only has the church focused on ensuring the spiritual and emotional health of its congregation, but it has maintained and supported its outreach and education programs for the wider community:
Virtual Sunday Morning Worship Our 10am Sunday worship celebration has been livestreaming on Facebook Live allowing members of the church, the community and friends around the country, to worship together. All are welcome by visiting the FCC’s Facebook page (@First Congregational Church of Westfield, NJ) or by direct link from the church website at www.fccofwestfield.org.
Monthly Prayer and Meditation Monthly time for quiet reflection has always been a mainstay at First Congregational Church, however, in this time of stress and uncertainty, it has never been more necessary. The prayer and meditation sessions can be joined via Facebook Live on scheduled dates each month for scripture and community concerns.
Outreach During this time of isolation, FCC recognizes there’s a powerful need to stay connected to its members and to continue its service to the wider community. FCC Deacons maintain regular communication and connection with elder members and shop for those most vulnerable. To assist with the larger community’s financial burdens, the church has established a fund to continue financial assistance for, among others: The Elizabeth Coalition to House the Homeless; the FCC Food Pantry; the Westfield Fun Club, which promotes the economic and social well-being of local refugee families; and Bridges Outreach, which feeds the homeless.
Education Christian education continues to thrive with offerings for all ages since the pandemic began. Children in PreK through grade 8 received the Church School curriculum through Flipgrid. The youth in FCC’s Confirmation Class continued their instruction on Zoom and engaged in creating new service projects. Adult Learning opportunities were also available through Zoom during Lent through the month of May with record attendance. And the church’s Youth Fellowship social group has also “met” regularly with virtual games and engaging discussions.
And More! In May, FCC hosted a special “pop-up” Zoom session, a Q&A with current Westfield Mayor, Shelley Brindle and former Westfield Mayor Thomas Jardim, exclusively for its members and friends. The moderated discussion, with questions from members, centered around the state of the town and future outlooks. Both mayors are church members. More of these types of virtual events are in the planning!
If you are seeking a new spiritual community, we welcome you! We are a congregation of open-minded and big-hearted people who have discovered the freedom and joy a Christian spiritual life offers — parents, singles, teens, children and seniors who strive daily to live out that life in their varied walks of life. As a member of the United Church of Christ, the community at FCC comes from an unusually broad mix of denominational backgrounds, including Roman Catholic, Presbyterian, Baptist, Episcopal, Lutheran, Quaker and even no faith background at all.
In all aspects of its life and mission, FCC welcomes and affirms people of every race, age, gender, marital circumstance, sexual orientation and expression, physical or psychological ability, economic condition, ethnic origin and theological tradition. Here are just a few things current members have said about why they became a part of FCC:
“We immediately felt a difference visiting this church and being welcomed by all of the members. It is friendly, spiritual, theatrical, caring, fun, and inspirational ... a wonderful place for our family.” – C. FANWOOD, NJ
“If you are looking for a church where actions speak louder than words, THIS IS IT. They seek justice and love for all people by preaching love in the face of hate and doubt, display generosity through the giving of time and talent to many causes, and demonstrate fellowship through friendship, social activities, and worship. The ministers are involved, devoted, and generous with their time. The Youth Group engages and challenges the youth through thoughtful discussion, games, trips, parties, and lots of volunteer opportunities. Join us for worship on any given Sunday and see for yourself!” – A.E. WESTFIELD, NJ
First Congregational Church is located at 125 Elmer Street in Westfield. For more information, please call the Church Office at 908-233-2494 or visit www.fccofwestfield.org.