Our mission is to seek the challenges of the city and to be a part of downtown Wilmington as we live into the realities of urban life.
Our principal focus on local mission is now incorporated into Urban Immersion, with its main programs: The Corner (partnership with visiting mission groups) and The Corner Table (cooking classes for youths aging out of foster care, and for young adults with Down Syndrome moving into independent living).
Winter Sanctuary: In cooperation with Friendship House, First & Central's Memorial Hall is open Saturday mornings from November through March for use by Wilmington’s homeless population. Volunteers from F&C and the wider community provide fellowship while participants enjoy a cup of coffee or hot chocolate in a safe, warm, and dry environment.
Friendship House Dinners: One or more volunteers prepare and take dinner to typically ten women residing in Friendship House's transitional homes. Volunteers are invited (and encouraged!) to share the meal and hear the stories of the women. To offer assistance, contact the church office.
Wilmington Kitchen Collective: In May of 2022, First & Central became an official part of this community development program, which provides culinary entrepreneurs access to commercial kitchen space. Our 2018 kitchen renovation will be put to great use! This is a partnership with the Wilmington Alliance, Grace United Methodist Church, and the Riverfront Church.
Giving Tree: During three of the Sundays in Advent, First & Central congregants donate gift cards, food, clothing or other products for distribution to organizations like A.I. Hospital for Children, YWCA Homelife Management Center, Emmanuel Dining Room, and Friendship House. For 2021, our Giving Tree recipients are Team Hope (an Afghan family resettlement project), the PC-USA Young Adult Volunteer program, and Friendship House.
Meals on Wheels: This renowned program delivers hot meals to the homebound. A First & Central member and pastor brought Meals on Wheels to Wilmington 40 years ago, and it continues to be an important volunteer opportunity for our members.
Serving special youths: In cooperation with PFLAG of Delaware and various schools' Gay-Straight Alliances, we have hosted Prom-style dances for the LGBTQIA+ youths in our community. As well, in partnership with the Down Syndrome Association of Delaware, we hosted a Valentine's Day Dance.
I was originally drawn to First & Central to join the choir, and I realized my spiritual journey also would include the Mission at Home program. This gives me an opportunity to serve the poor in the urban setting of which this church is an integral part.
Our Larger Community
Appalachian Service Project: In many summers, a group of F&C youth volunteers travels with their chaperones to the mountains of Appalachia to participate.
Cuba: In 2014, a group from F&C traveled to Cuba, taking sewing materials, tools, and other much-needed goods. The travelers learned a great deal about Cubans and their worship during the visit, and also enjoyed talking with the hosts about life in the US. In return we have welcomed leaders of the Presbyterian Church in Cuba to worship with us, as we maintain an ongoing relationship with the church in Placetas, Cuba.
First & Central member Grace Fulda is spending a year as a YAV (Young Adult Volunteer) in the Republic of Korea (beginning September, 2021). Follow her blog, and keep her in your prayers.
Team Hope, based at First & Central, is helping to resettle an Afghan family following takeover of their country by the Taliban. The family of three are now living in Wilmington, adjusting to their new lives here.
In addition, financial, material, and/or volunteer support are provided to the following (click to connect):
PC(USA) Based Organizations:
Delaware Based Organizations: