November 13, 2019
Making Advent Great Again!
We have just two Sundays remaining in the current “liturgical year.” The church’s liturgical year ends with Reign of Christ Sunday on November 24th and we begin a “new” liturgical year on Sunday, December 1st, which is the First Sunday of Advent. Several yeas ago, Church Historian, Diana Butler Bass, shared these helpful words about the season of Advent: 
According to ancient Christian tradition, “Christmas” is not the December shopping season in advance of Christmas Day; rather, it is Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and the Twelve Days following that run until early January. During most of December, Christians observe Advent, a four-week season of reflection, preparation and waiting that precedes the yearly celebration of Jesus’ birth. In many mainstream and liturgical (and even liberal and progressive) churches, no Christmas hymn will pass the lips of a serious churchgoer for another four weeks. If you wander into a local Lutheran, Episcopal or Roman Catholic parish, the congregation will still be chanting the ethereal tones of “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” or “Watchman, Tell Us of the Night” … There are no twinkling lights or over-the-top Christmas displays. Just four candles in a simple wreath, two partially burned, two yet to be lit. The mood is somber as December moves toward deeper darkness, and the night lengthens. The world waits, and it is time to prepare for the arrival of God’s kingdom. It is not Christmas. It is Advent.

During these weeks, churches are not merry. There is a muted sense of hope and expectation. Christians recollect God’s ancient promise to Israel for a kingdom where lion and lamb will lie down together. The ministers preach from stark biblical texts about the poor and oppressed being lifted-up while the rich and powerful are cast down, about society being leveled and oppression ceasing. Christians remember the Hebrew prophets and long for a Jewish Messiah to be born. The Sunday readings extol social and economic justice, and sermons are preached about the cruelty of ancient Rome and political repression. Hymns anticipate world peace and universal harmony. Churchgoers listen to the testimony of Mary, the Mother of Jesus, who speaks of God: 
He has shown strength with his arm; 
he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts. 
He has brought down the powerful from their thrones, 
and lifted-up the lowly; 
he has filled the hungry with good things,
and sent the rich away empty.

Jesus was born to confront the rulers of this world with the love and justice of the God of Abraham — that Jesus, the same Jesus who preached to the poor and marginalized were blessed, is the King of kings and Lord of lords. All earthly powers pale before him, the humble born one who will die a political traitor to Rome.

Something to think about as “Commercial Christmas” proceeds apace.
Scott Kenefake
Transitional Minister
Concord Christmas Parade
The annual Concord Christmas Parade is scheduled for Saturday, November 23rd from 2:30 - 5:30 p.m. We encourage everyone to come out for this fun event. Our church provides assorted cookies, hot chocolate and water free of charge as an outreach to the community. Bring blankets or chairs. There is plenty of open space to sit on the church grounds and enjoy fellowship while watching the parade.
We would welcome cookie donations. Store-bought or homemade are both great. If you would be able to bring two dozen cookies, please email Donna Cline at by Thursday before, so that we know about how many cookies to expect. You can drop off cookies, marked "The Christmas Parade," in the Fellowship House during church office hours or on Sunday morning. Also, we would welcome help to set-up, help to man the tables during the parade, and help with clean-up.
All Church Read- Neighborhood Church
Join us in November and December as we study the book "Neighborhood Church" by Krin Van Tatenhove and Rob Mueller. Together we will ask the question, "How can we embody the values of love, grace, and justice?" As faith communities, how can our collective embodiment of these values shine even brighter? The answers to these questions must always unfold right here, right now, exactly where God has planted us." 
Books can be bought online or they can be purchased through the church office for $12.
All Adult Sunday School classes as well as the High School Sunday School class are invited to gather in Davis Hall starting on at 9:45 a.m. Even if you don't read the book, we hope you will join us!
Here is our reading schedule for the remainder of the book:
Nov. 17- Chapter 3
Nov. 24- GIFT Sunday
Dec. 1- Sunday School classes will not meet
Dec. 8- Chapter 4
Dec. 15- Chapter 5
Tuesday Lunch Bunch
Come have lunch next Tuesday, November 19 at 11:45 a.m. in Davis Hall and enjoy a presentation "The Camino de Santiago." Join Brad and Linda Barnett as they share stores from their fall pilgrimage in Spain. Remember to make your lunch reservations by noon Monday, November 18th.
Called Congregational Meeting
There will be a Congregational Meeting following the worship service this Sunday, November 17, for the purpose of affirming the nominees that have been selected for the Pastor Nominating Committee. Here are the nominees for the PNC with a brief bio about them.
Pastor Nominating Committee
Dave Goff is a native of Gastonia, NC where he was raised in First Presbyterian Church and earned his Eagle Scout award. He moved to Concord in 1976 to work with the NC Cooperative Extension Service and soon after joined FPC, Concord, where he later married his wife, Gina, and raised two children. Dave has been active in the church and community in a number of ways including Sunday school teacher, deacon, elder, Habitat donor and volunteer, grounds cleanups, Bayonnais child sponsor, Church Street Market for Mission, and Commons volunteer. He is a founding and active member of Cabarrus Rotary, active volunteer with Meals on Wheels, past board chair for American Red Cross and a 20-gallon blood donor. Dave is a proud graduate and retiree of N.C. State University and these days he and Gina enjoy selling antiques and collectibles.
Margaret Hillman is the mother of two daughters; Spencer age 12 and Ruthie age 10. She currently serves on the Board of Deacons and enjoys volunteering with Meals on Wheels. Margaret is a member of the corporation for the Boys and Girls Club of Cabarrus County, and has worked locally in the insurance industry for 26 years.
Cheryl Kelling and her husband Doug moved to Concord in 1976 and joined First Presbyterian Church shortly thereafter. In her years here, Cheryl has served as a member of the diaconate as well as several terms as a member of the session. She served as Moderator of Presbyterian Women, has volunteered at Bible School for a number of years and is an active member of her circle. She served on the Associate Pastor Nominating Committee that called Julie Hester to our church in 1993. She also served as chairperson of the Transition Committee after Todd Hobbie retired. For 25 years, Cheryl taught the 5-day 4-year-old preschool class at First Kids. 
Cheryl and Doug have 2 daughters. Mitchell Kelling is a family law attorney who lives and works in Charlotte. Porter Kelling Peterson is a pediatrician at Cabarrus Pediatrics. She and her husband Ben, along with their 2 sons Miller and Teddy, are active members here at First Presbyterian. 
In her spare time, Cheryl enjoys walking, reading and being with friends.
I am Betsy Liles and I am a life long Presbyterian having grown up at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Charlotte and being a member of First Presbyterian Church since 1987. Married to Jock Liles, we have four sons, Welch married to Morgan, Paul engaged to Anna, and twin sons Woody and Hines. We also have two precious granddaughters, Harrison and Perry Jane.
I have served as a Deacon and chaired the Diaconate. I have served as an Elder twice, have taught elementary and Junior High Sunday School, Co-chaired a Women’s Circle, served as PW Moderator, am a member of the FPC Foundation Board, and was a member of the most recent PNC Committee.
I am deeply devoted to First Presbyterian Church and to all that God has provided for our church, for my family, for our congregation, for our community, and for those who came before us and for those yet to come. I am honored to be considered for the PNC and promise to prayerfully do my best to assist in finding the one God is calling to be our church’s next Senior Pastor.
I’m Rindy Moore and I am excited to participate on the PNC here at First Presbyterian. I joined First Pres in 2015 after moving back to Concord from Vancouver BC. I was married in the church in 2007 to long time member, Thomas Moore. Together we have two beautiful children: Emmaline (5) and Findley (2). I’ve been volunteering with the young people of the church since I joined. First, as a high school Sunday school teacher, and now as the leader for Daisy Troop 3631. I’m passionate about First Pres having an active and engaged group of children and youth. Some of my fondest childhood memories include my first church family. I work full time for Communities in Schools of North Carolina at the Performance Learning Center High School where I provide direct service interventions that encourage students to stay in school.
Hello my name is Mack Morgan. I am seventeen years old and I have lived in Concord my whole life. I have been a member of the First Presbyterian church my entire life. I have made many great friends because of going to First Kids and I have good memories from my time as a preschooler at this church. I went to R. Brown McAllister for elementary school.I went to Concord Middle in middle school, where I ran track and served on the student council as an executive board member. I am now a junior at Concord Highschool, and plan to attend college after my graduation. I have been a Boyscout for most of my childhood. I started cub scouts in 2nd grade at First Presbyterian’s scouting program before transferring to Pack 59. I stayed with this troop through cub scouts and boy scouts. The scouting experience has helped me to grow as a young man and has also been an enjoyable experience. I recently obtained my rank of Eagle Scout this past year. For my Eagle Project I assisted the church in the construction of the Prayer rooms in the recreation hall. My project turned out to be very successful and I am thankful that I was able to make a difference in my church and the community. The youth group of this church has been an important part of my life growing up in the church community. I enjoy going to youth group on Sunday evenings as well as our annual mission trips, especially Montreat. Youth group overall makes me feel very connected to god and happy to be a member of this church. The church has done so much for me throughout my childhood and I would love to give back to the church by serving on this committee. 
Todd Phillips and his wife Harriett moved to Concord in 1996 and joined First Presbyterian in 1997. They have two grown sons, McLeod and Jack. Todd has been a member of the Diaconate and currently serves on the Session. He is a teacher with the S&D Sunday School class. Todd is a partner at the Concord law firm of Hartsell and Williams.
Kathy L. Pilkington – Kathy has been a member of First Presbyterian Church since 1982. She has served as a Deacon, as Moderator of the Women of the Church and as Circle Leader for Circle 5. She served as an Elder from 2010 to 2013 and is currently serving on the Session. She is a member of the Todd Hobbie Sunday School Class and this year she is part of the teaching team for Middle School Sunday School Class (which she enjoys immensely!).  She recently agreed to be a member of the Committee for the Preparation for the Ministry of the Presbytery of Charlotte. Kathy is on the Board of Directors of Memorial Garden Association for which she served as President from 2016 to 2018. She has been on the Board of Directors for The Pines at Davidson since the early 2000’s for which she served as Chair of the Board from 2013 to 2015.  Kathy is in the process of retiring from the practice of law with Bringewatt, Wolter & Snover, PLLC. She has a son Nathan who is married to Cynthia and who is a professor at Fairfield University in Connecticut.
Dr. Nathan Woolwine moved to Concord 15 years ago, after completing his nephrology fellowship in Charleston, SC. Shortly after arriving, he and his wife found their church home here at First Presbyterian. Nathan has served as a Deacon and is currently serving as an Elder. He is the present moderator of the Christian Education Committee. He and his wife Amy have 2 children, Nate (12), and Sally (10). In his spare time, Nathan is an avid golfer and can frequently be found poolside or court-side cheering on his kids. 
Wednesday Night Fellowship
Join us on November 20 for Wednesday Night Fellowship when we will hear from Concord Police Captain Todd McGhee on Concord's opioid crisis. Dinner will be Italian chicken, pasta, broccoli, fruit, salad and dessert. Be sure to make a reservation with the church office by Noon on Monday, November 18th. There is a sign up sheet in the Fellowship House.
Save the Date for GIFT Sunday
Join us Sunday, November 24th for a time of hands-on intergenerational learning. All ages are welcome to experience GIFT Sundays - Generations in Faith Together, a Sunday program by the Christian Education Committee. Beginning with a light breakfast at 9:45 a.m., we will have fellowship, learn and grow together with our Advent Workshop, with crafts and prayer stations to help your family prepare for the birth of Christ. This will be the only Sunday School offering that morning, with all classes meeting together in Davis Hall, and nursery will be provided for infants and toddlers. Come learn and grown in faith together!
Angel Tree Update
Once again, the Board of Deacons in partnership with FPC members is pleased to participate in Angel Tree, a Prison Fellowship program that helps incarcerated parents strengthen relationships with families. Volunteers from the congregation participate by donating Christmas gifts which are then presented to a child as if they have come directly from the parent behind bars. This is a powerful way for us to share Christ’s love by ministering to those children suffering through the temporary absence of a parent.Those who did not choose a child from the Angel Tree last Sunday, November 10, are encouraged to choose an Angel Tree tag from the Angel Tree in the narthex this Sunday, November 17, the last day our tree will be in the narthex. We encourage you to choose an Angel Tree tag from the Angel Tree in the narthex this Sunday November 10 or next Sunday, November 17. We ask that all wrapped gifts be returned to the Fellowship House by Wednesday, November 27 so they may be sorted and distributed to the Deacons on December 3 for delivery to families. Thank you, the Board of Deacons
Brownie Troop 323 and Junior Troop 3142
All 2nd - 5th grade girls are invited to join Brownie Troop 323 and Junior Troop 3142 us this Thursday, November 14 for a meeting at 5:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. on the 2nd floor of the Education Building. Questions or to RSVP:. Rene Prager :
Girl Scout Troop 334
All 6th-12th grade girls are invited to join Girl Scout Troop 334 for our upcoming meetings:
Friday, November 15th, 5:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.: We will be earning a cooking badge, come hungry!
Tuesday, November 19th, 5:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.: Exciting plans in the works, TBA soon!
If you can attend either or both meetings, or would like additional information, please contact either Kirby Sheridan: or Rene Prager:
Red Cross Cabarrus County VIP Blood Drive
Monday, September 16th in Davis Hall from 2:30 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
To schedule an appointment, visit and enter: Cabarrus VIP Blood Drive or 28025
Sign-up Links
Lay Liturgists
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read scripture in worship on Sundays.

Sanctuary Flowers
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sanctuary flowers please click here
to sign-up for one or more Sundays
during the year .
Wednesday Night Fellowship
6:00 p.m., Davis Hall
Youth Newsletter
Sign up here to receive the Youth Newsletter for detailed information
about all events related to youth who are in 6th-12th grade.
Do you have a love of cooking and feeding hungry youth? Please consider signing up with a friend to supply a meal for our Youth Fellowship program on Sunday nights. The youth's stomachs thank you! Rachel will send out meal specifications, including allergy needs, etc.
Sign up 
Sunday, November 17
Rev. Dr. Scott Kenefake
   Luke 21:5-19             
Thursday, November 14
9:00 a.m. First Kids Preschool
9:00 a.m. ALC Board
Friday, November 15
9:00 a.m. First Kids Preschool
9:30 a.m. Adult Literacy Tutoring
Sunday, November 17
9:45 a.m. Sunday School
10:30 a.m. Sanctuary Choir
11:00 a.m. Worship/Congregational Mtg
3:00 p.m. Children's Choir
4:00 p.m. Daisy Troop 3631
4:00 p.m. Youth Choir
Monday, November 18
9:00 a.m. First Kids Preschool
9:00 a.m. Commons Committee
11:30 a.m. AA
2:00 p.m. Red Cross VIP Blood Drive
Tuesday, November 19
9:00 a.m. First Kids Preschool
10:00 a.m. Adult Literacy Tutoring
11:45 a.m.. Lunch Bunch
6:00 p.m. Cub Scouts
7:00 p.m. Boy Scouts Troop 3
7:00 p.m. PW CT
Wednesday, November 20
7:30 a.m. Men's Bible Stud y
9:00 a.m. First Kids Preschool
2:00 p.m. Staff Meeting
6:00 p.m. Fellowship Supper
7:30 p.m. Sanctuary Choir

Church Report
Congratulations to Brian and Stephanie Floyd on the birth of their daughter, Hollins Rose Floyd born on October 15, 2019, in Concord, NC. Grandparents are Locke and Cathy Floyd.
November 14 - Austin Rohrer, Ashe Simpson
November 16 -Fred Pinion
November 17 - Jock Liles Jr.
November 18 - Allison Mitchell, Stephany Moffitt, Harrison Reiff
November 19 - Steve Kopelic, Dan McDonald, Mack Morgan, Jennifer Rinker
Scott Kenefake
Interim Senior Pastor 

Associate Pastor 
for Care and Mission

Associate Pastor
for Christian Formation
Director of Music and Organist


Suzanne Russell
Church Administrator

Financial Secretary
Heath Ritchie
Maintenance Superintendent

Director of First Kids

Church Hostess

Wedding Director
Contact Info
First Presbyterian Church

70 Union Street North
Concord NC 28025 

Mailing Address: 
PO Box 789 Concord NC 28026-0789

Church Office Hours: 
Monday - Thursday, 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
Closed Friday
The Commons Prayer Room:
Monday: Closed
Tuesday/Thursday/Friday - Open for Scheduled Groups
Wednesday: 10:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Saturday: 10:00 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Sunday mornings for FPC

Memorial Garden:
(980) 621-0719
36 Spring Street SW
Concord NC 28025
Garden Hours: 
Tuesday - Saturday, 9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Sunday, 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Closed Monday