About FPCe


Who We Are

First Presbyterian Church of Elizabethton, TN, is a community and congregation with 250 members that celebrates diversity, pursues and supports social and ecological justice for all peoples and Earth, and worships God's grace through ritual, sacrament, and creative services.

A Progressive Christian Community
(see Affiliations, below)

A Green Congregation

Contact Us

Office Assistant,                Jackie Edmondson

Treasurer, Elaine Kolp

Music Director, Phil Haga

Where We Are

119 West F Street
Elizabethton, TN  37643

Click here for a Google Map


Adult Forum and Youth Sunday School: 9:45 am

Worship Service:  11:00 am

Nursery Opens at 9:45 am

Wednesday Meditation led by Dr. William Kirkwood: 7:30-8:30 pm

Who’s Who at FPCe

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What Is Going On Around Here?


The Center for Progressive Christianity

More Light Presbyterians

Covenant Network

Every Church a Peace Church

Green Interfaith Network, Inc.

You now have the option of making your Pledge or one-time gift online.  Simply click the button to get started!

Visit our Stewardship page to learn more about the FPCe Stewardship campaign



About Us


The story of the First Presbyterian Church of Elizabethton, Tennessee is an important part of the early story of the State of Tennessee. The earliest reference to a Presbyterian congregation, in what was later to become Elizabethton, is in the minutes of Hanover Presbytery, dated October 25, 1782. In those minutes the Rev. Samuel Houston (uncle of Sam Houston of Texas) was instructed to "supply [preach] one Sunday at Watauga." This would have been Fort Watauga, recognized by the State of Tennessee with construction of Sycamore Shoals Historical Park within the city limits of Elizabethton. This was also the site of the gathering of the Over-Mountain Men in 1780, which, blessed by the Rev. Samuel Doak (a member of Hanover Presbytery), marched over the mountain and defeated the British at the Battle of King's Mountain, a battle that was decisive in the eventual outcome of the Revolutionary War.

Sometime prior to 1835, the congregation in Elizabethton sensed the need for a new church building and constructed the beautiful brick structure, which still stands on Main Street. In this building the Presbyterians of Elizabethton worshipped God and experienced with the entire country the agonies and ecstasies of nationhood. In 1951 the congregation decided to relocate and to build a new church building. This was to be done in two phases. The educational building was constructed in the first phase and the nave in the second with the steeple being placed on the completed building July 17, 1964. Throughout its history, the people of First Presbyterian Church have been committed to communicating the transforming power of the Christian faith. It has sought to do this through the preaching and teaching ministry of the church as well as through a continuing effort to relieve human suffering within the community, in our nation, and around the world. This commitment has seen the congregation through the 221 years of its history.

[The historical information is taken from A History of the First Presbyterian Church, Elizabethton, Tennessee (1982) by Robert K. Johns.]


The “Open Arms” that grace the front of the church were designed to be just that - open arms.  We want it known that we welcome everyone.  We reach out to everyone in the community, embracing everyone who enters our doors.  Our new logo incorporates this element as well.


With joyful hearts and open minds, we welcome all persons as diverse, unique, and individual expressions of the image of God as we:

Affirm the unconditional love of God for all people as expressed in the life of Jesus Christ.

Celebrate God’s grace and creative work through ritual,
sacrament, music, art, movement, and play.

Honor our Christian heritage while we explore the knowledge and wisdom of multiple religions, science, philosophy, humanities and psychology to deepen and enrich our spiritual journeys.

Nurture one another through fellowship and compassion in a community that seeks to offer wholeness.

Embody our faith through local ministries and in actions that promote environmental sustainability, peace, and justice for all people and Earth.

In awe and gratitude for the Divine Mystery that dwells within each of us and pervades our Universe, we seek to create a Christian community that honors our past, is vitally connected to our present, and looks with hope and vision to the generations after us.

Our Mission Statement

More Light/Covenant Network Affiliations

On May 12th, 2008, the Session of the First Presbyterian Church of Elizabethton, Tennessee, by a unanimous vote, affiliated with More Light Presbyterians and with the Covenant Network of Presbyterians.   First Presbyterian of Elizabethton is a progressive congregation that has a range of social justice ministries, while embracing scholarship, science, and the insights from the world’s religions.  

We are an inclusive, welcoming congregation for all people regardless of race, ethnic identity, economic status, sexual orientation, and gender identity.   In a climate of discrimination within the church against gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people, First Presbyterian affirms the mission of More Light Presbyterians:

Following the risen Christ, and seeking to make the Church a true community of hospitality, the mission of More Light Presbyterians is to work for the full participation of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people of faith in the life, ministry and witness of the Presbyterian Church (USA).   

First Presbyterian in a time of division affirms the inclusive vision and unity of the Covenant Network of Presbyterians:

The Covenant Network of Presbyterians is a broad-based, national group of clergy and lay leaders working for a church that is simultaneously faithful, just, and whole. We seek to support the mission and unity of the Presbyterian Church (USA) in a time of potentially divisive controversy. We intend to articulate and act on the church's historic, progressive vision and to work for a fully inclusive church. We are committed to finding a way both to live out the graciously hospitable gospel we have received and to live together with all our fellow members in the PC(USA).

First Presbyterian Church of Elizabethton is a member church of Holston Presbytery and works with its sister congregations in cooperative ministry and witness while affirming the mission of Holston Presbytery:

* To proclaim Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord;

* To serve Christ by helping Presbyterian
congregations within its boundaries to serve Him;

* To coordinate the mission to which the Presbytery itself is called; and    

  1. *To interpret the work and witness of the Presbyterian Church (USA) for its own members and for all others in this region. 

Click here to learn about Amendment 10.

What Do We Mean by “Progressive”?

We call ourselves a “Progressive Christian Community”.  We are affiliated with The Center for Progressive Christianity and affirm The Eight Points.