601 N. Vermont St. Arlington, VA 22203


"As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord,  continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving." (Colossians 2:6)  

Letter From a Birmingham Jail

January 6 - 27, 2019
from 9:45 to 10:45 am
Room 102

During the month of January we will take a careful look at Martin Luther King Jr.’s Letter From a Birmingham Jail, one of the seminal writings from the Civil Rights movement and one of the great compositions of American Literature. The most recent General Assembly of our denomination recommended that Letter From a Birmingham Jail be studied for possible inclusion in our denomination’s creeds and confessions. Our Adult Sunday School class will read, study, and discuss this letter during January.  Perhaps we'll make an informed opinion about its creedal / confessional significance. Pastor Bryan will be leading this class.

MLK Prison

Also coming Sunday mornings from February thru April 2019:

Greatest Hits from the Bible - a Deeper Dive into their Meaning! 

Watch this space for future details.

adult christian educ


 Reformed Institute Convocation

Saturday January 26, 2019; 9:30 a.m.

Still People of the Book?  Protestant Identity in Our Time

Dr. R. Bruce Douglass, Outgoing Director of the Reformed Institute

Does it matter whether Christians know anything about the Bible? Does it matter whether they understand the claims their churches’ creeds make? For most of their history Protestants assumed the answer to questions of this sort was obvious. Not only did they seek to make the Bible as widely available as possible, but they also made a concerted effort to enable people to understand the basic doctrines of their churches. They valued, in other words, an educated laity, out of a conviction that religious literacy is important to the practice of discipleship.  In our time, however, that appears to be less and less the case — in the industrialized world, at least. In other parts of the world Protestants often exhibit today some of the same zeal for Biblical and theological knowledge that past generations did in this part of the world. But even in the United States, the level of Biblical knowledge among Protestants (including evangelicals) appears to be quite low, and the churches seem to be unable to do anything about it. What is the meaning and significance of this development? Does it portend a fundamental change in Protestant identity? Where is it taking us?

This program will be held at: National Presbyterian Church,  4101 Nebraska Ave. NW, Washington DC.  Continental Breakfast 9:00 am; Program 9:30 - Noon.  This program is free.  Registration on the Reformed Insitute website is encouraged, but not required. www.reformedinstitute.org 

First Presbyterian Church is a Sponsor of The Reformed Institute of Metropolitan Washington

FPC Website images clipart2

In 2013, First Presbyterian Church became a sponsoring member of the Reformed Institute of Metropolitan Washington (RI). The RI is an organization that was established in 2003 "to promote understanding and awareness of the Reformed Tradition among the staff and members of Presbyterian churches located in the Washington area."  Its purpose is to help the churches in this presbytery live up to one of the basic principles of the Reformed Tradition – to ensure an educated laity. 

FPC Arlington has benefitted from many of the RI programs – the Confirmation Retreat, many of its classes, the annual convocation, and its Company of Teachers. As a sponsoring church of the Reformed Institute, First Presbyterian members are invited to participate in all of the RI adult education programs.  RI offers half-day, one day or short series adult education formats during the year for sponsoring church members. 

One member of our staff and a member of our congregation serve on the Board of Directors.  As members of the Board of Directors, we are involved in determining the programs that are offered, development activities, staffing decisions, etc.  We are expected to actively support the programs of the Institute by encouraging our members, friends, and community to participate in their offerings, and to take the things we learn and put them to use in our own congregation. For more information on the Reformed Institute, visit their website at: www.reformedinstitute.org

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Children's and Youth Ministry

Take a few moments to check out a PHOTO SLIDESHOW of the Summer 2014 Youth and Middle School Mission Trip. Five middle and high school girls were ready for a mission adventure. The experience depended their faith, broadened their perspective as compared to their own lives, opened their hearts and the girls were inspired by volunteers that were committed to making a difference.

At First Church, we partner with families to guide and nurture children and youth, providing plenty of ways to encourage kids to know and follow Jesus Christ and be faithful members of his church. Learn how we approach spiritual development of children and youth at Children's Ministry and Youth Ministry.