Staff

Pastor

Greg Rupright

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Pastor

Greg Rupright

The Rev. Gregory J. Rupright (“Greg”) is a native of Fort Wayne, IN where he attended Homestead High School, graduating in 1979.
Greg earned his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Religion and History from Hope College, Holland, MI in 1984.  From 1984-1986, he studied at New Brunswick Theological Seminary, New Brunswick, NJ, but decided to complete his theological education at Union Theological Seminary, New York, NY, earning his Master of Divinity Degree in1989.  Greg served as the Part-Time Licensed Interim Minister of First Reformed Church, Union City, NJ from 1990-1994.  Having accepted a Call as the Minister of Word & Sacraments of Emanuel United Church of Christ, Woodhaven, NY (served from 1995-2005),  Greg was ordained by the Metropolitan Association of the UCC New York Conference on November 17, 1996 at Broadway UCC, New York, NY.

In 2005, Greg was called to serve as the Settled Minister & Teacher of Rutherford Congregational Church, UCC, Rutherford, NJ until September 28, 2014. He moved to New York City in October of 2014, was married to his partner of twenty years, Hector Ramon Mencia Rivera, on November 20, 2014, and has worked various secular temporary jobs before accepting the Call to serve as the Pastor & Teacher of First Congregational, UCC on August 28, 2016.

Greg is an amateur pianist and organist, loves all kinds of music, and enjoys studying the Medieval, Renaissance, and Reformation historical periods.  In his spare time, Greg likes to hike.




Church Secretary

VIcki Sherry

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Business Administrator

Cheryl Overs

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Director of Music

Heather Watras

Heather has been a member of the First Congregational UCC of Fairport, NY since 1983. She has been a visible and active member of the church throughout her years of membership. As a student she participated in the Sunshine Singers and Youth Choir, Junior and Senior Youth Fellowship groups, and Habitat for Humanity Mission trips. As a young adult, she participated in worship weekly as a member of the Chancel Choir. In 2002, she served as Substitute Choir Director for three months. After four years as the Music Director at the First Congregational UCC in Spencerport, NY, she was very happy to come “home” to First Church in Fairport as Choir Director in September 2010.

Heather works professionally as a public school Instrumental Music Teacher at Odyssey Academy in the Greece Central School District. At Odyssey, Heather directs the middle school and high school bands. During her spare time she sings in a professional-level community chamber choir, Madrigalia, and with Nik Entertainment Company (a.k.a. Nik & the Nice Guys). She lives in the village of Fairport with her husband, Jesse, and puppy, Otis. Heather holds degrees in Music Education from the Eastman School of Music/University of Rochester and Ithaca College.




Organist

Bea Benedict

Playing the piano and organ have been Bea’s vocation and avocation! Bea started piano lessons when she was five years old; she continued through high school and on to Houghton College where she received her Bachelor of Music degree, majoring in piano and minoring in organ and voice. After that she attended Syracuse University where she received her Master of Music degree.

Prior to her present position as organist at the First Congregational Church in Fairport, Bea was organist at South Avenue Presbyterian Church, Hilton Baptist, East Rochester Methodist and Presbyterian churches, and the United Church of Christ in Pittsford, NY.

Besides her organ positions, Bea has also taught many private piano and organ students and has worked as piano accompanist in several school districts. She was the piano accompanist at Greece Arcadia High School for twenty years and the piano accompanist for Pittsford Musicals shows for thirty years. She has accompanied many talented and gifted high school vocal and instrumental students in Kilbourn Hall at the Eastman School of Music and in New York State music competitions. Currently she accompanies the 6th, 7th, and 8th grade choirs at Martha Brown Middle School; she has also accompanied at Johanna Perrin, Minerva Deland, and Fairport High School.

“My mother told me she prayed for a daughter who would always love music. I know God answered her prayers. I will keep continuing to use my talent as long as God gives me health and strength.”

--Beatrice Benedict




 
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