First Congregational Church
164 Deer Hill Ave.
Danbury, CT 06810
Phone:(203) 744-6177


The Human Side of Jesus

His hometown only knew him as the Carpenter’s Son.

(Posted July 6, 2018)

Stepping into the pulpit for me this Sunday as I recuperate from oral surgery will be my husband, Gary. He’s going to bring his own perspective on the side of Jesus that we don’t often focus on -- his human side. 

Worship with Us

Services begin at 9:30 a.m. All are welcome.

Certainly with all of the miracles that the Gospel writer Mark relates to us, we are used to thinking of his supernatural side. But this week we see Jesus as he returns to his hometown full of people who only know him as the Carpenter’s Son, and who harbor a world of doubt. Please join Gary for this special Sunday. I’ll be back next week. -- Reverend Pat Kriss

From Reverend Pat Kriss: God IS Listening

Acknowledging Divine Power and Presence are all potent ways to move the energy of this world.

(Posted July 13,2018)

When every hope is gone, 'when helpers fail and comforts flee,' I find that

help arrives somehow, from I know not where. Supplication, worship, prayer

are no superstition; they are acts more real than the acts of eating, drinking,

sitting or walking. It is no exaggeration to say that they alone are real,

all else is unreal." – Mahatma Gandhi


Instead of  the turmoil and political drama of this week that is ending, I think all of us were most intensely glued to the news of those twleve young boys and their soccer coach who were trapped far underground in a cave that instantly filled with floodwater. Amidst all the political posturing and deck-stacking in Washington and on the international stage, I found that what I looked for first each morning that I awoke was news of the rescue mission. While Supreme Court appointments are important, these young ones and their rescuers were far more pressing on my mind.\

Worship with Us

Services begin at 9:30 a.m. All are welcome.

When things are tough and realistic hope seems all but gone, that is, indeed, the moment where we find ourselves reaching out in mind and spirit to that which transcends reality and infuses it: God. We find our souls calling out for divine intervention to release from darkness the Innocence of life. We pray. We bargain. We call out Holy, Holy, Holy God of Lord God Almighty, All Thy works shall praise Thy name In earth and sky and sea… And we trust.

And we wait.

As Gandhi pointed out in the quote above, even when hope seems gone, help arrives from somewhere, as if God were really listening. The answer is…. GOD IS LISTENING. Of course, not all prayers are answered the way we want them to be, but the fact is that asking for God to intervene, worshipping God and acknowledging Divine Power and Presence are all potent ways to move the energy of this world so that the very minds, and arms, and strength and human ingenuity that it takes to do the impossible are brought together. It is mind-boggling to have learned that, not even minutes of the last child and diver leaving the caves, the main pump that held back the cave water for the last week so that all could escape, broke.

I know that there have been many times over the last year of school shootings and violence when “thoughts and prayers” were the words carelessly tossed out when no one knew what to say about the tragedies. And THAT deserves our condemnation. But thoughts and prayers – and worship, when offered honestly, can pave the way to the kind of bravery it takes to force people in power to act.

From the letters of James that we don’t often read, comes this advice from the disciple:

Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise.  Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.  And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. 

This Sunday and for the two remaining Sundays in July, I’ll be focusing our message on the incredible ways that those who wrote some of our most favorite hymns were inspired by circumstances to write them. This Sunday we will be spending a few minutes with “Holy, Holy, Holy.” We’ll have the very talented Linda Wrenn sitting in for Jim Moriarty as he recuperates from last week’s surgery.

See you soon! --- Pastor Pat Kriss

Our Music: A Surprise and an Honor

(June 21, 2018)

I was so surprised and honored when during our June annual choir recognition Sunday service, I was presented with the organ plaque- normally located on the top of the organ console, with my name added to the list along with all the very talented organ/music directors of this church’s organ. I thank Nancy Wildman who initiated this venture as she realized that I have been here since 2011 and thought it was time to add my name to this plaque. This is a remarkable sanctuary that has a wonderful Aeolian Skinner rebuilt organ, and it is truly a joy and honor to be here. Thank you for all the support you have given me over the years.

This Sunday is the last of our Jazz Sundays until September. If it this is a favorite service of yours, be sure to attend the 10 a.m. service.

This past Sunday the choir sang for the last time until September. I want to thank them for their continuing dedication, support and contributions. Please see me if you would like to join us this Fall and if you have a little experience with reading music. I am sure you’ll enjoy it.

This summer there will be featured soloist either vocal or instrumental. The exception will be July 1st when I have a quartet planned to sing at our annual Independence Day Service. This service will also include preservice music of traditional American folk songs with which to sing along. So bring the family and your kazoo!

Peace and Joy through seasonal songs -- Jim Moriarty


First Congregational Church
164 Deer Hill Ave.
Danbury, CT 06810
Est. 1696

Phone: (203) 744-6177

Office Hours:
Monday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Tuesday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Wednesday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Thursday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Friday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Thrift Shop Hours:
Friday 9:30 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Saturday 9:30 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Sunday Worship:
Sunday    10 a.m.–11 a.m.