Meet Our Staff
Rev. Kevin Pleas
Contact Rev. Kevin at 603-625-5093 or KPleas@FCCManchesterNH.org
Read more about Rev. Kevin...
After High School, I joined the Coast Guard for four years of active duty, then attended college at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, where I received a degree in Psychology. Then came three years at Andover Newton Theological School, a Master of Divinity Degree, and, in 1987, a formal Ordination to Christian ministry in the United Church of Christ. I have served churches in Massachusetts, Illinois, Connecticut, and Maine, and, in November of 2015, I was thrilled to be called as the Senior minister of the First Congregational Church of Manchester.
My ministry rises from knowing that God is gracious and extravagantly welcoming, that Jesus Christ provides a wonderful blueprint for faithful living, that life is abundant, that our hearts are best served by living close to a spirit of compassion, and that we are all invited into what Martin Luther King, Jr. liked to call the “Beloved Community.”
Personally, I have been happily, no joyfully, married to my wife, Pamela, for nearly 36 years. We have two beautiful daughters living in Maine: Sarah and Corinne. Sarah is married to a great guy named Sean, and the two of them recently gifted us with our first grandson: Caleb, who is perfect. And then there’s Coco, our lovely poodle-mix rescue dog.
Church office phone 603-625-5093
Contact Kevin Pleas at KPleas@FCCManchesterNH.org
Director of Music Ministry
Contact Adam at 603-625-5093 or APeithmann@FCCManchesterNH.org
Read more about Adam...
Adam completed an undergraduate degree in Organ Performance from the Eastman School of Music and a Master’s Degree with a church music certificate from the Institute of Sacred Music at Yale. He also completed additional studies as a Fulbright scholar in Bremen, Germany.
Adam and his wife, Lauren, and daughters, Audrey and Annie live in Chester, New Hampshire. Lauren, also a graduate of the Institute of Sacred Music, is a music teacher at Salem High School in Salem, New Hampshire. Adam and his family are delighted to be a part of the First Congregational Church of Manchester, NH.
Contact Adam Peithmann at APeithmann@FCCManchesterNH.org
Director of Parish Care
Contact Barbara at 603-625-5093 or BPapagian@FCCManchesterNH.org
Read more about Barbara...
I have a Certificate in Spiritual and Pastoral Care from Andover Newton Theological School and am working toward Commissioned Ministry in Parish Care.
Since I have been an active member of First Congregational Church for twenty-three years, I have worked on many committees, and was Deacon of Discipleship before joining the staff in my capacity of visiting ministry.
I grew up in Wellesley, Massachusetts and attended The University of New Hampshire. I now live in Manchester, New Hampshire and have two adult sons.
When I am not working, I enjoy reading, swimming, golfing, playing my oboe, and spending time with family and friends.
A Bible verse that really speaks to me is Romans 12:10. “Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.” That is the essence of my ministry.
Contact Barbara Papagian at BPapagian@FCCManchesterNH.org
Church School Coordinator
Contact Betsy at 603-625-5093 or BGreen@FCCManchesterNH.org
Read more about Betsy...
While attending First Church, I was a part of the church school program from Nursery through the teen youth group. I also found myself as a Girl Scout leader for 8 years. It only made sense that when the Children’s Education Coordinator position was made available, that I apply. I am now in my 4th year as coordinator and feel proud that we have a vibrant program of church school for pre K through 8th grade on Sunday mornings each week. We have recently begun a new program called “Me Too!” for grades 2-5 where families and children can come together once a month for bible study, fellowship and fun. First Church also offers a Vacation Bible School program each summer.
I look forward to “retiring” from so many hats and putting my efforts into more volunteering in the future. But for now, each Sunday the children’s weekly stories of their lives make my day!
Contact Betsy Green at BGreen@FCCManchesterNH.org
Contact Larry at 603-625-5093 or LDearborn@FCCManchesterNH.org
Read more about Larry...
In his spare time, Larry belongs to a bowling league and volunteers his time at the Elliot Hospital.
Contact Larry through the church office at 603-625-5093 or LDearborn@FCCManchesterNH.org.
Contact Linda at 603-625-5093 or LBonetti@FCCManchesterNH.org
Read more about Linda...
I have been blessed to work at First Church since 2014 with a talented, compassionate staff and a host of members and friends who have embellished my life in unbelievable ways! My husband, Michael, two children and four grandchildren will attest to this! I now have time to enjoy puzzles, reading, sewing, cooking…and every weekend at our camp swimming, boating, and enjoying friends and family.
Contact Linda through the Church Office at 603-625-5093 or LBonetti@FCCManchesterNH.org
Contact Sokhom at 603-625-5093
Read more about Sokhom...
On his off days, he cares for his 14 grandchildren, his 25’x50’ garden, his model train collection, and he escapes to go fishing as often as he can.
Contact Sokhom through the First Church office at 603-625-5093.
Front Office Assistant
Contact Lauren at 603-625-5093 or LHendersonFCC@Yahoo.com
Read more about Lauren...
Lauren lives here in Manchester. She is married to Mitchell and together they have a ten-year-old daughter named Violet. Lauren’s professional experience includes library work in Manchester and Bedford. She has worked at the Currier and Shaker Village Museums, and teaches Meditation and Yoga as well. We hope you’ll drop by to welcome the most recent member of our staff!
Contact Lauren at LHendersonFCC@Yahoo.com .
First Church Choirs
Our choirs enrich your worship experience, which includes children’s story, music, sermon, and prayer.
Communion is celebrated during worship on “Threshold Sundays” – the first Sunday of Advent, the first Sunday of the New Year, the first Sunday... Learn more...
Rev. Kevin offers a variety of multi-week book and Bible study classes at different times during the church year. Past classes have included... Learn more...
“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.”
“I get an overall feeling of being uplifted.”
Lenten Sacred Space...A time for silence, prayer and meditation
The mission of the Board of Deacons for Lent is to offer a refuge and a respite from the hectic pace of daily life.
During the 5 Fridays of Lent the chapel will be opened on March 2nd, 9th,16th,23rd and 30th, from 12:00 - 1:00. All are welcomed to experience an oasis to reflect, to pray, to mediate or just to enjoy a few moment of peaceful silence in the intimate surroundings of the First Congregational Church Chapel. The chapel doors on Union Street will be open so anyone who wants to come in can spend as long as they want in solitude. A Deacon will be present to offer a smile of welcome.
This is the Second Sunday in Lent. Barbara Papagian will lead traditional worship at 10am in the Sanctuary.
Prior to the 10am service, please enjoy the new Time of Greeting ... meet new friends and share fond memories before worship begins.
Bible Study Class is a weekly gathering led by Reverend Kevin. This week’s session, Tuesday 3/6 & Wednesday 3/7, include the
Sodom and Gomorral
Read: Genesis 18:16 - 19:38 & Kenneth Davis: “Don’t Know Much About the Bible” "Why did Lot's Wife turn into a pillar of salt?"
Service of Prayer and Healing
Inspired by the Celtic Tradition, the roughly half-hour service will include music, readings, prayers and an opportunity to receive a “Laying on of Hands” blessing. Service will be held in the Chapel following the 10:00 am worship service and fellowship, on the 2nd Sunday each month.
From the Pastor's Desk
Get connected to Rev. Kevin's insights! Learn more...
See the order of worship at First Church for the Sunday Service, including the Scripture Reading. Learn more...
The Sunday News
What’s happening this week in the life of First Church? Learn more...
What’s happening this month at First Church? Learn more...
ONA Covenant approved on Sunday, November 19th
The faith community of First Congregational Church, Manchester NH reaffirms our shared covenant and beliefs that the Gospel of Jesus Christ calls us to love one another and to extend welcome to all people. We affirm that each individual is a child of God and that all are worthy of God’s love and grace.
As witness to these beliefs and as covenant members of Christ’s church, we proclaim and celebrate God’s love for people of all ages, all races and ethnic backgrounds, all mental and physical abilities, all socioeconomic backgrounds, all sexual orientations, all gender identities and gender expressions, and all other diverse attributes that are woven into the fabric of humankind.
We are called to be as one body, seeking to walk together in the complete life and ministry of our church. With God’s grace, we resolve to be an open, inclusive, affirming, and accessible community of faith. We invite all to participate and share in the life and leadership, ministry and fellowship, worship and sacraments, responsibilities and blessings of our Christian community.
Approved by the Congregation on Sunday, November 19, 2017
First Congregational Church
508 Union Street, Manchester, NH 03104