Ruth cares about helping people, animals, the environment, injustice, and making a difference.
She finds joy in her cat, as well as all animals. She appreciates the unconditional love they offer.
God is teaching her about patience. How important it is to do good work and not pay as much
attention to what others think. She is learning about giving herself grace. She chose to be a
member at FPC Dallas because her sister recommended it, as well as it felt like a church where
people care for people and that it was not shy in talking about things that are real. Ruth has
experienced FPC Dallas as a place of welcome.
Cindy + Eric Samuelsen
Cindy cares about social justice as well as the importance of making the world a better place.
The greater church has not always done that. Cindy finds joy in sharing a meal with friends and
having meaningful conversations. She enjoys meeting new people. God is teaching Cindy that
there is an infinite amount of experiences and people to meet and things to do. There is so much
that she doesn’t know, hasn’t experienced, or learnt.
Eric cares deeply about social justice. He enjoys gathering with friends and sharing life together.
God is teaching Eric how to be more open. How to listen to what people are saying, the inbetween
Cindy and Eric chose FPC Dallas to be their church home because it is a church that is trying to
make a difference. It is a downtown church, and it is a great way to meet new people. Also they
really enjoy Zach and Jessie Light-Wells.
Sharon cares about people, as well as her health and being a child of God. She finds joy in her
daughter, people, and comedy. She finds joy in the place she is in, she likes herself right now!
God is teaching her how to love herself and that there are no mistakes. “God made me, me, and
I am alright!” Sharon chose to join FPC Dallas because she loves this church, and always has.
Everyone is welcoming and gives her space. She also likes the way people dress here!
Perry cares about many things, but mainly the personal well-being of his friends. He cares about
nature, the happiness of others, and doing good in this world. He strives to be the best person he
can be. He finds joy in living, spreading goodness, and experiencing love exhibited in fellow
human beings. Every day he wakes up he sees the world with wonder. God is teaching Perry
about patience. He is learning that the conclusions he makes about things based on his
observations might be different than others. It might even take people quite a bit longer to come
to their own conclusions. He is learning about gratitude, thankfulness, optimism, and hope.
Perry chose to join FPC Dallas as a baby step on the golden road of spirituality. He recently
moved to Dallas, which a big step for him. By joining the church he has fulfilled a spiritual goal
Ross doesn’t want to sound too cheesy, but he cares about career development and passing his
CPA exams. He is ready to start his adult life. He also cares about his faith, family, friends and his
cat Willow. Ross finds joy in spending time with his nieces and nephews through self-sacrifice
and service to others. He has appreciated the etymology of the word joy as associated with
something poignant and spiritual. God is teaching Ross about acceptance, knowing that he is
right where he is supposed to be. He is doing the next right thing. He also feels as though he is
often not aware of what God is teaching him, he sees purpose and understanding for God’s
lessons best through hindsight. Ross has joined FPC Dallas because he went to a service and
loved it. He experienced the love of Christ in the sanctuary and wants to keep coming back.
Addie + Andrew Warren
Andrew cares about friends, family, environmental things: conservation and sustainability, and people.
He finds joy in being outside; hiking, camping, seeing cool, beautiful places and things. He finds joy in the
interactions between people and how God shines through. He finds joy in acts of sacrifice and
undeserved grace (ie. Les Miserables). God is teaching Andrew how to understand the Bible in a new
way. He has moved from a more literal, rigid view into a view that is truer to what the Bible was intended
to be. Because of what he is learning he is getting to know new and different people. It is unfamiliar
territory, uncertain…exciting. He is also learning more about himself and how he operates. He is learning
how to give people room to feel their emotions, as well as allowing that room for himself.
Addie cares about similar things to Andrew, as well as her students. She cares about healing and making
sure that she allows space for people’s feelings, and extends it to her students, as well as justice work
around fairness and educational issues. Addie finds joy in children, being outdoors as well, and being
with people she loves and know her and see her. She finds great joy in being with her sisters and doing
silly things with her students. God has been teaching Addie about the damage and harm done to people
by the church. She is learning that God was in the painful past and that God continues to show up. She is
learning that God is okay with anger. God’s patience is prominent in history, in the unfolding future, and
When Addie and Andrew got married, they started looking for a church and decided to make sure that
they found a place that was welcoming to all people, particularly affirming to the LGBTQIA+ community.
They wanted a church that cares about racial diversity and plays a role in seeking justice and equity in
the city of Dallas. They wanted a church where friends could be involved and invited, as well as a place
they could call home. That is what they have seen at FPC Dallas, and it has begun to feel like home as
they continue to become more connected.
Destini cares about being there for her community, remaining grounded in faith, and
being a part of something bigger than herself. She finds joy in dancing and spending time
with close friends. God is teaching Destini about patience. She is learning to slow down
and not jump to worrying if things don’t come to fruition on her preferred timeline. She is
learning to be slow to respond, thoughtful, and patient with herself and others. Destini
has chosen to join FPC Dallas because she wants to be part of a church where she can
build friendships and be involved in her local community while in med school. She was
drawn to FPC Dallas because it reflects the heart of Jesus in action and in word. “FPC
Dallas is in the heart of the city, involved, actively caring, and scripture centered.” Destini
joined to take on responsibility as a member of her community and participate in the
continuation of the characteristics of FPC Dallas that she admires.
Thomas cares about God, family, and friends. He finds joy in being around people, being a part
of the church, and worshipping. God is teaching Thomas patience. In the past, before I came to
Dallas, if I had to wait long before, I would get upset but I am learning how to wait and not get
upset. I am recognizing that things are out of my control. When I moved to Dallas in May 2021, I
had walked by the church on my way to meet a friend and he told me that he had been
attending. I then attended a service, and the people were really nice, the pastor was really nice,
and I decided to keep going.
Vic + Aracely Brown
Vic cares about humans and putting an end to injustice, the rich, and the poor. He is fascinated
by the differences found in humans, on why some can act one way, and others so completely
different. Vic finds joy in traveling and experiencing new things, like road trips and historical
places. God is teaching Vic about being more patient; as a parent, with others, as well as with
Aracely cares about actions rather than words. She strives to live in harmony and do the best
she can each day to make the world the best place she can. She finds joy in being with her family
and going to the movies. Aracely is learning that God has a plan for her life. God is teaching her
about being thankful and experiencing things as a blessing even when things are hard.
Vic and Aracely decided to join FPC Dallas because they had been looking for a new place to
worship for a decade. After attending for FPC Dallas for several years they decided that this was
the place that reenergized their faith and they wanted to be a part of this church. They have
been impressed by how people engage their family and really want to know them. They enjoy
Sunday School classes, tai chi, Amos’ sermons, the chapel, meaningful prayers, the choir, the
way the church demonstrates charity, caring, helping the community, mission. They are joing
because of a little bit of everything.
Cynthia cares about her family, the consideration of all people. She cares about all people
treating each other better and about the playing field being made level. She finds joy in getting
her hands in the dirt. God is teaching Cynthia to take a breath, it doesn’t have to work out this
minute. She is taking her time and open to where God is calling her. She has joined FPC Dallas
because it reminds her of the church she grew up in. She is a 5th generation Presbyterian and
another denomination would be incomprehensible. She loves the forward thinking and outreach
of the church, the ritual, music, and reverence of worship.
Marty cares about the reading and interpretation of scripture, as well as issues of social and
racial inequality. He finds joy in holding his grandchildren and discovering fascinating
gems within the Biblical text. God is teaching Marty that those who have differing political
beliefs than him are also his neighbors. He is also exploring when and where his voice is
appropriate. He has joined FPC Dallas because the church lives into speaking and
acting according to God's truth. There is a willingness to push the comfortable… a move from
discipleship to apostleship.