Frequently Asked Questions
Everyone likes to know what to expect. Here are some questions (and answers!)
What times are your worship services?
We gather for worship on Sundays at 10:00 am. Due to the pandemic, Summer worship services this year will still be held at 10am. Normally summer worship begins at 9:30 am from June to Sept (exact dates to be announced), and occasionally for special services throughout the year.
Will someone call me after the service?
We encourage to fill out a Pew Welcome Card to ask questions and request a call back. Cards can be placed in the Offering Plate. At any time you can call the office at 603-625-5093 if you have questions or need spiritual guidance from the Pastor.
What if the weather is bad…do you call off the services or close the office?
The Pastor will make the determination on cancelling a service by 6pm the evening before. Please check WMUR.com for the latest list of closing and delays. The office is closed whenever the Manchester School System announced closure due to weather conditions.
How do I get there? Where do I park?
First Church is located at the corner of Hanover and Union Streets in Manchester, NH. There is parking on Sunday mornings and evenings just north of the church on Union Street in the adjacent parking lot. Additional spaces are available in front of the church on Union Street and in our small parking area along the church driveway. For detailed information, please see our Contact page or view map below:
What happens during our Worship Service?
As you enter the church you will be welcomed by a friendly greeter. You will then enter the sanctuary where an usher will give you a Sunday Bulletin with a printed order of the worship service.
Worship services feature readings from the Bible, preaching, prayer, and music. Children are invited to join the pastor during the service for Time With God’s Children, after which they are escorted to Sunday School classes.
What about children?
Children are always welcome in our worship service. Children begin in the worship service with their parents. Following the Time With God’s Children, children go to their respective Sunday School classes.
Will there be communion?
The Sacrament of Holy Communion is celebrated six times each year in the sanctuary during worship on Threshold Sundays. These include: the first Sunday of Advent, the first Sunday of Epiphany, the first Sunday in Lent, Emmaus Sunday (the second Sunday of Easter), Pentecost, and World Communion Sunday (the first Sunday in October). We serve only non-alcoholic grape juice, and always offer a gluten-free bread alternative. Whether you are a member of First Church, another church, or no church, you are welcome to join with us in this moment of blessing and grace. On the first Sunday of every month that is not a Threshold Sunday, we have a short, informal Communion service held in the Chapel following the 10:00 am service.
Will I be expected to give money?
An offering will be received during our service to support the church and its various ministries. We welcome any and all gifts from those who are able to contribute, but please do not feel obligated to put anything in the offering plate.
What happens after worship?
Following worship all are invited to Fellowship Hour where you can meet others and enjoy coffee, punch and refreshments. This gathering is located in the dining room on the lower level of the church. You can take any stairwell from the sanctuary exits to get to the dining room, and an elevator to the lower level is also available.
Do you offer childcare and Sunday School programs for children and youth?
We welcome and cherish children and families. We have trained and experienced teachers for our Sunday School classes and responsible adults who care for our youngest children in our church nursery. Our ushers can direct you to our nursery care.
What should I wear?
On any given Sunday, some of the congregation will come dressed in their “Sunday best”, while others dress more casually. You are encouraged to dress in whatever way feels most comfortable to you.
Is the Church Handicap accessible?
First Church is accessible for the disabled through the ramp door on the Amherst Street side of the building. There is also an elevator that serves all floor levels. A handicap accessible restroom is located on the main floor. In addition, we provide large print bulletins and wireless hearing assistance devices for those who may wish to use them. The church driveway has reserved handicapped parking. Please ask our ushers to assist you with any of these services.
How do I become a Member?
Joining First Church as a member means that you agree to a covenantal relationship with God through Jesus Christ and with others in our community of faith. We offer a New Member Orientation to explore and discuss what membership is all about. This is followed by a New Member joining Sunday, at which time new members are welcomed into our church family.
Rev. Carolyn and Rev. Barbara will offer a variety of multi-week book and Bible study classes at different times during the church year.
“It is my time at First Church that helps me "recharge" my spirit with faith and hope for the coming week!”
“A path which leads me forward in a journey of grace and love with my family, friends, and community."
“Cherished elements of core traditions live on at First Church…”
“I hope others will find such joy when they come here.”
Eleanor Flint Campbell
“We treasure our many friends and colleagues in this wonderful congregation.”
Susan and Bruce Felmly
“I love First Church because of my involvement with Women's Connection.”
"We visited several churches after moving to Manchester. In our worship at First Church we were overwhelmed by the great preaching, the magnificent music and the very welcoming congregation. We feel truly blessed to have been led to membership at First Church."
Ross and Marion Palmes
Please watch our pre-recorded Worship service every Sunday at 10am on Facebook. Our next in person/live streamed worship service will be on Sunday, February 27th at 10am.
[CLICK HERE] to send a Prayer Request to Rev. Barbara Papagian by 8:30am Thursday to include in the service.
Rev. Barbara will be sending out periodic inspirational messages via The FCC Friday Link on the 1st and 3nd Fridays of the month; and special editions to keep you updated with FCC Covid protocols. To sign up, send your email to Rev. Barbara by [CLICKING HERE]. We pray that everyone stays safe, obeys the rules, and keeps in phone or email contact with all those in need of kindness and an encouraging word.
Visitors are always welcome at First Church, but appointments must be made. Masks must be worn in the offices.
The Food Closet is available Monday-Friday 9-12noon.
Due to the rapidly rising numbers of Covid cases in New Hampshire and the contagiousness of this latest variant, First Church is temporarily moving to pre-recorded Sunday worship at 10am on Facebook with the expectation of returning to in-person, livestreaming worship on February 27th and continuing throughout Lent.
-Rev. Carolyn Keilig & The FCC Church Council
Thanks to everyone who submitted a photo! We have published the "online instant directory" with personal passwords! Refer to directions in the Friday Link for how to connect and edit your own information.
Thanks to everyone who pitched in to work on the Memory Garden! Our tranquil space for personal reflection and healing is available to you outside the Chapel doors. Donations to the Memory Garden can be sent directly to FCC with "Memory Garden" in the memo.
[CLICK HERE] to enjoy our current videos on Vimeo. Recently Adam has been recording some select pieces for your enjoyment. Also check out "I Believe", Jeffrey Frye's original "We are Unbroken (After All)"; "Weave" sung by our choir during the Dress A Girl Around the World Blessing and Stewardship Sunday service; and other unique and enjoyable FCC musical moments!!
The Open & Affirming Committee generally meets via zoom on the 4th Sunday at 1pm. Contact Carol Soucy for more information and summer meeting times.
See the order of worship at First Church for the Sunday Service, including the Scripture Reading. Learn more...
The Sunday News & FCC Friday Link
What’s happening this week in the life of First Church? Click on the FCC Friday Link to see what happening around First Congregational Church!
Bulletins and Sunday News will be available at all in-person services.
What’s happening this month at First Church? Learn more...
Only 6 left at $12.50 each!
!See a member of Women's Connection or call the office for your copy of our favorite recipes
First Congregational Church
508 Union Street, Manchester, NH 03104