The Service of Ordination and Installation of Ruling Elders took place on January 5th. Candidates Sherrie Cathcart, George Manning, Delaine Nelson and Ann Sullivan came forward for the Constitutional Questions, prayer and laying on of hands by all ordained elders present in the congregation.
Longest Night Service
The ecumenical Blue Christmas worship service was held in our sanctuary on Saturday, December 21st, offering a time and space for grieving our losses, acknowledging our pain, and taking comfort in God’s abiding love and care for us. The service was one of prayer, litany, scripture and hymns, in an atmosphere of quiet meditation.
Christmas Eve Service
Candlelight, harp and pipe organ music, and the singing of Christmas carols filled the sanctuary on December 24, the night of our annual Christmas Eve service. Worshippers filled every seat, including the chairs on the chancel, and overflowed into Coleman Hall where the service was shown live.
Advent Lessons and Carols
This Advent service is based on a composition by E. W. Benson, Anglican Bishop of Truro, England in 1880, for a Christmas Eve service at that time. In 1918 it was adapted for the chapel of King’s College, Cambridge, by its Dean, Eric Milner-White, who also wrote The Bidding Prayer. The current service at First Presbyterian incorporates out Chancel Choir, a guest harpist, flutist and oboist, and congregational members who read scripture verses foretelling the coming of the Lord. It is a beautiful, heart-felt service of scripture, prayer, the lighting of candles, and music.
Smoky Mountain Brass Quintet Concert
Always popular and loads of fun, especially at Christmas time, the Smoky Mountain Brass Quintet was once again a crowd-pleaser at First Presbyterian on December 7th.
Empty Bowls Luncheon
The ninth annual Empty Bowls fundraiser for the Food Pantry
“Empty Bowls” is an annual fundraiser for the Highlands Food Pantry, co-sponsored by the Bascom. Area potters and wood turners contributed handmade bowls for purchase, which entitled participants to enjoy a luncheon of hot soups prepared by local chefs. The bowls are a reminder of the many in our world who go without food on a regular basis.
Harpist — Kela Walton
November 2 — Kela Walton, harpist, accompanied the Chancel Choir and played the Prelude and Offertory for the worship service on November 2nd. Kela is based in Spartanburg, South Carolina, and performs with many regional symphonies as well as giving private harp lessons and writing for harp journals.
Bluegrass — Charles Wood and Friends
October 20 — Charles Wood and Friends, a much-loved regional bluegrass band, had the congregation tapping its toes and singing along during the Sunday morning worship service.
Amernet String Quartet
Saturday, October 12 — As part of the Highlands-Cashiers Chamber Music Festival, the Amernet String Quartet from Miami, Florida, offered a spectacular Saturday afternoon concert in the sanctuary.
The Rabun Gap-Nacoochee Singers
September 29 — Our sanctuary was filled to overflowing with the glorious music of Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School’s Gap Singers, directed by Allegra Boggess.