Our History Is Our Legacy
The DNA of First Congregational Church was there in the beginning, among that small community that followed Jesus more than 2000 years ago. It was there in the Reformation – a protest movement against the abuse of authority by church leaders and in the discovery by Luther and Calvin of the Bible’s teaching that salvation is not earned, but is a gift. It was there in the rich histories of the Congregational, Christian, Evangelical and Reformed churches that ultimately formed the United Church of Christ in 1957. And in more direct ways, it was there in the American Missionary Association (A.M.A.), an ecumenical group of abolitionists, missionaries and former students of Oberlin College, some of whom had earlier engineered the very first Christian anti-slavery movement in History (the Amistad Episode), as they, following the end of the Civil War, took on a new challenge by sending missionary teachers and clergy into the south to educate the recently freed slaves.
Among the more than 500 schools established throughout the south, including the six A.M.A colleges and other Universities was the Storrs School located on Houston Street near Piedmont Avenue. It is out of this school that First Congregational Church was born. With this history steeped in struggles for freedom and a propensity to stay the course, while simultaneously embracing new methodologies, the church throughout ten pastorates has endeavored to serve God by serving others.
Our Future Is Our New Legacy
The future Legacy of the First Congregational Church will be a continuation of the best of its traditions. First Congregational Church will remain a “downtown church.” We exist at the intersection of four vibrant forces for good in the world: the African American Christian Church, a vibrant international city, a world class university (Georgia State University), and through the Women and Children’s Shelter, an internationally renowned institution which works for human rights and provides humanitarian aid (CARE). Now, we seek to establish a New Legacy which will have a lasting impact throughout the city, the US and the world by our alliances and relationships in new and yet unknown sectors.
As an expression of our fourfold heritage and our membership in the United Church of Christ, we are committed to the causes of social justice, equality and reconciliation. First Church will continue to bear witness to God’s presence in the world through its work in education, local and global missions and artistic expressions. We are becoming what we have been for 140 years and much, much more.
Our Present Is Our Journey
First Congregational Church is on a journey of revitalization. We are revitalizing our historic sanctuary (built in 1908) to restore its historic beauty while incorporating modernizing features that allow us to meet the challenges of faith and life in the 21st Century. While we revitalize the physical sanctuary, we (the members) are also in the midst of a spiritual revitalization. We understand our history as a source of strength, wisdom and tradition; we also recognize that we exist as a church apart from any physical sanctuary. Therefore, in addition to physical revitalization, we are deepening our personal and collective relationship[s] with God and our faith traditions (Congregational, Christian, Evangelical and Reformed).
FCC (UCC) has vital ministries for all ages and stages of life including: dynamic preaching, relevant bible studies, a highly esteemed music ministry (chancel choir, jazz chorus and jazz vespers, gospel ensemble, youth and children’s choirs, Meridian Herald, etc), a confirmation program for children, the Church After Party for Youth, 55 Plus and caregivers support groups. We are also redefining and revitalizing our local and global missions. We have much to offer; yet we will remain incomplete until you join us.