First Presbyterian Church is a missional church in that we believe it is important to follow Matthew 25:34-35.
The following ministries are supported directly or indirectly by our congregation. Those ministries are Kairos Prison Ministry, Prisoners of Christ, Hope Outreach Ministry for Every-1, Ministry of Outreach to Slavic Tribes, Inc., Len Ministries, DESC, Habijax for Humanity, Feeding Ministry at Sulzbacher Center, Literacy Mission, Medical Mission Jamaica, India for Christ Ministries, First Ministries, Young Life, It’s All About Jesus – Pass It On, and East West Ministries.
Here are some of the ministries that we support.
Kairos Prison Ministry
Kairos Prison Ministry is a group of Christians who believe in the Holy Trinity and honor and live the teachings of the Bible they go into prisons conducting a weekend event similar to the Cursillo program. We have a group of men that regularly go into Union Correctional Prison at Raiford, FL to assist with the weekend Kairos events. To learn more, or to volunteer, please contact the church office.
Jamaica Medical Mission
Jamaica Medical Mission is supported in a variety of ways which includes 2 cents-a-meal and medical and dental mission trips. Dr. Jim Gaff, an FPC member, has long participated in the Medical Mission trips and in February 2005 led the first Dental Mission trip only with several other FPC members as support staff. He has led a team twice a year since the first trip. To find out about volunteer opportunities please contact the church office.
I.M. Sulzbacher Center for the Homeless
The I.M. Sulzbacher Center for the Homeless has provided shelter, food, health care and support services to over 300 homeless men, women and children each night since 1995. More than just a place to sleep and eat, the center offers medical, dental, vision, HIV/AIDS services, case management, substance abuse treatment, mental health services and suppportive housing. Job placement assistance, parenting classes, life skills classes and spiritual programs are also available.
FPC assists the center with the preparation and serving of one meal per month throughout the year (2nd Sunday). Volunteers prepare the food in our own kitchen the Thursday morning prior to “Feeding Sunday”. Members also offer a prayer opportunity for individuals after they have eaten. To volunteer with the “Feeding Sunday” contact the church office.
A nonprofit volunteer organization committed to helping groups, agencies, churches, etc. start their own literacy projects. They train tutors to teach their target group basic reading skills and help a few tutors to become trainers. Another fine program housed within FPC’s downtown campus, one of the current projects is taking place in the Jacksonville County jail. Contact their office at 358-7323.
DESC (Downtown Ecumenical Service Council)
This organization was formed in 1981 by a group of mostly downtown churches and reaches out to families with low income and others living on the street. Operating primarily on privately raised funds, DESC offers groceries, clothing, and utility/rental assistance to lives that are in economic crisis. This ministry takes place in our church basement with volunteers assisting the small staff 52 weeks a year in distributing food and clothing. Visit the Downtown Ecumenical Service Council online for additional information, or contact DESC at 358-0809 or by email.
Prisoners of Christ Ministry
Prisoners of Christ Ministry provides re-entry and transition services to men coming out of prison so that they can return to their communities as productive citizens. Since 1990, they have assisted more than 2,300 men, helping them learn skills, find jobs, develop a strong relationship with God, and reunite with their families. Their goal is to encourage our clients toward independent living within the first six months after their release from prison so that we can make a significant reduction in the recidivism rate in Florida.
Hope Outreach Ministry for Every-1
Hope Outreach Ministry for Every-1 is a local Jacksonville nonprofit agency that believes they cannot give up the chance of influencing our community that we call home. Christ is for "all of life" and "all people". They are committed to bring the Good News to a city in great need and to show Christ’s love to everyone. In their Center they established a practical needs ministry for every-1. (clothes, food pantry, mobile/stationary food preparation, temporary financial aid). For volunteer opportunities contact Eric Lockett at (904) 355-4060.
Ministry of Outreach to Slavic Tribes, Inc (M.O.S.T.)
A nonprofit, interdenominational organization, MOST’s ministry is to bring Slavic peoples to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ through building bridges of God’s love locally, nationally and internationally. With a vision to effectively communicate the gospel to non-Christians of Slavic origin living in the US and countries of the former USSR, MOST aims to channel those new believers into existing churches, where they will become disciples of Jesus Christ. MOST also provides resources to equip churches and other Christian organizations for effective outreach locally, nationally and internationally.
India for Christ Ministries
Prayerfully launched in 1988, India for Christ Ministries aimed at triggering a spiritual revolution in India. It is established under the mandate of our Lord. “The harvest truly is plenteous but the laborers are few”. Matt 9:37. It is a team of committed men and women of God dedicated to reach the millions in this vast country of India with the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is indigenous in structure and inter-denominational in ministry. It is registered as a Religious and Charitable Trust under the Government of Karnataka Act, with its headquarters at Bengaluru.
East West Ministries
East West Ministries has one consuming passion—to make God known among every nation, every tribe, every tongue, and every people. There’s a world waiting to know Jesus. And we are desperate to reach them with the radical message of God’s love and grace. They do this by focusing their attention on unreached and unengaged people groups as well as areas with limited or restricted access to the gospel. They also focus on building and mobilizing the Church because we believe it is central to God’s plan for bringing the gospel to the world.
FPC is a downtown church with three large buildings. As space is available, offices have been made available to other non-profit organizations. This helps in their ministry and also helps to make efficient use of our building. Organizations now sharing space in our building include DESC, the Synod of St. Augustine (PCUSA) and Literacy Pros of Jacksonville.