First Presbyterian Church      Belle Vernon, Pennsylvania
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About Us


Mission Statement

We live and share the Gospel of Jesus Christ in worship, service, and witness.  As a Christ-centered church empowered by the Holy Spirit, we seek God's plan for each of us and all of us; we invite eveyone to journey with us as we strive to grow in love, faith, trust, and discipleship.  (Adopted by Session, October 10, 1988; Revised February 2, 2013)

 

Our Beliefs

First Presbyterian is a church in the Reformed Tradition.  We hold to the traditional beliefs of the historic church of Jesus Christ as expressed in the Nicene and Apostles' Creeds.  We believe that people are saved by grace through faith.  We hold the Bible to be the inspired Word of God that is interpreted through the work of the Holy Spirit.  Scripture teaches us that God loves us unconditionally and sent his Son Jesus Christ to die for our sins.  We believe that the most appropriate response to this undeserved and unearned Grace is gratitude, shown by our submission to the will of God and by our commitment to do God's work in the world.

 

Our Denomination

First Presbyterian Church, Belle Vernon, is part of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), which has approximately 2.4 million members, 11,100 congregations, and 14,000 ordained and active ministers. 

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) is divided into 16 geographical areas called Synods; each Synod is further divided into Presbyteries.  Our local church is in the Synod of the Trinity, Presbytery of Redstone.  In addition, First Presbyterian is a member of local ecumenical organizations.

A fundamental tenent of presbyterianism is that activities of the church are governed by ordained Elders (lay members) and Ministers of the Word and Sacrament (clergy).  At all levels of the church above the local congregation, votes and actions are taken by assemblies consisting of equal numbers of laity and clergy.  At the congregation level, governance is by elected church officers.

 


Our History

Belle Vernon Presbyterians were meeting for worship by 1833 in the Rostraver area.  In 1869 the original church building for First Church was erected on land at First and Main Streets, donated by Louis Speer, a member.  A charter was granted to the church in June of 1874 with a membership of 51.  The first ordained minister to serve the new church, Rev. A. B. Lowes, was installed in October, 1874.  A larger brick building was erected on the same site in 1900.

We recently celebrated the 50th anniversary of our current building.  As part of that celebration, we commissioned the banner shown to the left, commemorating the historic meeting places of our congregation. 

 

In the mid 1950's the congregation undertook a project to build a new facility at our current location, 501 Fayette Street.  Called "the Church built from Chicken Pies," the building was largely paid for by chicken pie sales, still a vigorous fund raiser for our congregation.  It was this building whose anniversary was commemorated with the banner shown at the right.

Our sanctuary was recently enhanced by the addition of eight memorial banners celebrating the liturgical calendar.

The church offices and 3 meeting rooms are located in the Parish House at 511 Fayette Street, on property adjoining the church building.  A manse on Broad Avenue houses our minister and her husband.