Worship at Central

Worship this summer will feature a different hymn each Sunday. It will be an opportunity to sing many familiar hymns and dig into the meaning and significance of the words, the history of the hymn and how they both reflect and shape important aspects of our faith.


Sunday, August 21

The Rev. Adam Copeland served on the committee that selected hymns and format for our new Glory to God hymnal.  When we made plans for our summer worship series that would feature a different hymn each Sunday, we really wanted to hear from Adam about the process and about a hymn of his choosing. Adam will preach on Be Thou My Vision.

We are delighted to welcome back the Rev. Adam Copeland to our pulpit.Adam teaches at Luther Seminary in St. Paul where he is director of the Center for Stewardship Leaders. An ordained Teaching Elder in the PC(USA), his research engages questions of public leadership, technology, and religious rhetoric. Copeland is editor of Kissing in the Chapel, Praying in the Frat House: Wrestling with Faith and College (2014) and author of several book chapters on ministry and culture. He served on the committee that developed Glory to God: The Presbyterian Hymnal. He lives in Minneapolis with his wife, Megan Thorvilson.

Our own Jennifer Anderson will be joined by Lise Schmidt for an organ duet!

Following worship, all are invited to Third Sunday Lunch.

Sunday, August 28

This summer, each worship service has featured one hymn.  As our summer series wraps up, we will conclude with communion and a hymn sing that revisits the featured hymns of the summer.

Everyone age 7 and up is welcome to participate in a Drum Circle during worship!  Come at 10:00 AM to choose your drum, learn a few basic techniques, and to play!  We will play both the prelude and the postlude during worship.  No experience necessary.  If you do have a drum, you are welcome to bring it.


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We Choose Welcome

From Central Pastor Rev. David Colby

The Refugee Task Force and the Coordinated Mission Committee invite us to gather after worship this Sunday to take a picture under a banner bearing those words.  To those who are part of the current global refugee crisis, a sight of a church proclaiming and living that message matters.

We choose welcome is not a new idea for this church.  It is in our DNA.  To those new to downtown or lowertown Saint Paul, we hope you will find a welcome at Central.  Families with young children looking for a community of support and deep values find a welcome at Central.  To those who have lived in the city a long time, but realize that they need a community, we offer welcome.  To those who are gay or lesbian or bisexual or transgender, who wonder if this church will accept them for who they are, we offer welcome.  To folks who are homeless or hungry we offer practical hospitality and we hope they feel welcomed.

We won’t always get it exactly right.  Some will come wanting or needing anonymity and find too much attention.  Occasionally people will come and we won’t provide the welcome they are looking for.  We will occasionally fail, but our intention is to choose and offer welcome.

As we continue to absorb the news of the tragedy in Orlando on Sunday, this message is all the more needed in our community.  We must not give in to fear.  We must not give in to hatred that seeks to divide and conquer.  In the midst of terrible violence, we must do our part to be the light that will continue to shine.  We must support one another.  We must keep our hearts and arms and doors open.  Not because it is the easiest thing to do.  Not because it is the safe thing to do.  But because that is the good news we learn from Jesus.

One time Jesus was busy and his disciples tried to protect him and keep him from being bothered by little children.  And Jesus responded with words that still offer us guidance.  “Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.”  In Hebrews, the church is encouraged with these words:  “Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it” (Hebrews 13:2).

Central Presbyterian Church.  In the city for good.  We choose welcome.  And we hope you will join us.

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Pop Up Classical Concerts, co-sponsored by Minnesota Public Radio and Central Presbyterian Church

Pop Up Classical logoPop Up Classical time and place graphic


Wed., September 14 featuring Brian Carson (Organ)

Brian Carson, a native of Watertown, NY, received his Bachelor of Music degree from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music as a student of Garth Peacock and Haskell Thomson, and his Master of Music degree from The Eastman School of Music where he was a student of Russell Saunders.  In 1992, he took Second Prize in the American Guild of Organists National Young Artist Competition in Organ Playing.  From 1989 to 1991, he was the Assistant Organist to Bruce Neswick at St. Paul’s (Episcopal) Cathedral, Buffalo, NY, and from 1991 to 1998 he was the Director of Music at St. James’s Episcopal Church in West Hartford, CT.  At St. James’s, his choir included boy and girl trebles in the English choir school tradition.  In addition to singing for weekly services, they also sang at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City, The White House, and made two tours to England, singing at Ely and Lincoln Cathedrals, York Minster, and Westminster Abbey.  In 2002, Mr. Carson was a founder and first director of Hymnus, a choir comprised of boys and girls as well as adults, to specialize in the great sacred music of the western tradition.  Hymnus toured England in 2004, singing at York Minster, Westminster Abbey, and Westminster Cathedral.  In 2006, the choir toured Italy where they sang at St. Mark’s, Venice; the Church of the Gésu, St. John Lateran, and St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.  Mr. Carson was appointed Choirmaster-Organist of The Church of St. Louis,  King of France, in 2003.  In 2007, the St. Louis choir traveled to New York City, singing morning Mass at the Church of Our Saviour on Park Avenue, and Evensong at St. Thomas Church, Fifth Avenue.  In 2007-2008, he was the Music Director for St. John Vianney College Seminary, at St. Thomas University in St. Paul, the largest college seminary in the country.  Mr. Carson is married to Dr. Catherine Rodland, who teaches at St. Olaf College.  They have two children, Cate, 14, a violin student of Sally O’Reilly at the University of Minnesota; and John, attended St. Thomas Choir School in Manhattan, and is now a junior at St. Olaf College.

Concert 12:15- 12:30; free;

Lunch 11:45 – 1:00; $8.00.  

No tickets or reservations required.  

co-sponsored by Minnesota Public Radio and Central Presbyterian Church
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Wind In Our Sails! VocalPoint’s 5th Season

Fun group shotThank you for your generosity!   You helped us raise $21,621.89 for Upstream Arts!

Thanks to all for attending the concerts, and to the singers of VocalPoint for their powerful work!

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