WHO ARE WE?
A Community focused on PEACE, JUSTICE,
Love Thy Neighbor
Here are some of the specific ways we bring these words to life:
WHAT DO WE DO?
From infants to the retired persons in our community, we believe each brings a unique and vibrant gift. Bringing these gifts together creates unexpected opportunities for children to lead and adults to play.
Affordable housing and responsible progress
We advocate for those squeezed out of the inhumane New York City housing market with partners at Interfaith Assembly for Housing and the homeless and local community boards.
Care and respect for the earth
We are involved in revitalizing a sense of responsibility and connection to the earth, through gardening, responsible use of resources, and sustainability.
Alternatives to violence
We participate in a wide range of efforts to address systemic and intimate violence with partners including Connect NYC, New Yorkers for Gun Sense, and the Presbyterian Mission to the UN, Innocent Spouses Project.
Curiosity and diversity
We believe the opposite of fear is curiosity. So we seek to learnabout and lift up difference as a gift t be celebrated, participating in BlackLivesMatters, New Sanctuary, Parity, St. Pat's For All, Faith in NY, and Moral Mondays NY.
HOW DO WE DO IT?
We believe that the garden is a place of healing, connection, growth, and renewal. In a garden we can find peace and create peace.
Through the arts we seek to open new possibilities for mutual and self-understanding, to promote community, and to bring beauty into unexpected places.
We believe in going into the streets to suport the human dignity and rights of those who have been marginalized, oppressed, and cut off from fullness of life.
We trust that by centering ourselves in something greater than our own ideologies and individual capabilities that we will be able to bring even more to the conversation and work of justice and peace as Christians in a multi-faith world.
Like a tree that grows for more than a hundred years and is felled by a storm, only to push forth a green shoot from its hidden roots, Astoria First Presbyterian Church is a symbol of new life, resilience, and the hope that springs forth as God does a new thing when and where you least expect it.
Astoria First Presbyterian Church (member congregation of the Presbyterian Church (USA) is a re-emerging community with a history that reaches back to 1846. Founded by a group of 17 members, the church grew for over a hundred years until, like many churches in the late 20th century, its membership started to decline. After selling its buildings in 2005 to make way for affordable senior housing, Astoria First has been reborn. The community is now vibrant, diverse, and steadily growing.
Since October of 2012, the Rev. Thia Reggio has been working with the leadership and congregation to articulate their particular gifts and vision for reflecting God’s loving presence in the community of Astoria and beyond. With a growing artistic community in the neighborhood, and a number of musicians and artists in the congregation, Astoria First has incorporated the arts into its mission of gathering, serving, and bringing worship, social justice, and study opportunities to the neighborhood. By hosting our local Hellgate Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) and with a community garden in our plans, we have committed ourselves to honoring and caring for the earth as another central part of our mission.
The next chapter is being written, and if you are reading this, we hope God is calling you to write it with us.