For Immediate Release: History Repeats Itself –
Local family celebrates three generations of worship in 127-year-old church.
Callie Weber, 404-831-4460
Peggy Curington, 352-567-3435 Jean Weightman, 352-206-2036
Dade City, FL – Callie Curington Weber was the guest minister for historic First Presbyterian Church on Sunday, August 14. But she didn’t need directions for the drive up from Brandon. She knew the way—deep down in her DNA.
Family ties to this church for Callie and her family are many. Her parents, Dr. Arnold and Peggy Curington both grew up in Dade City, both were baptized in the church and married in the historic 127-year-old sanctuary in 1971. They had three daughters, Emily, Anna and Callie, who were all baptized in the church and attended services and Sunday school there throughout their youth. Callie went on to work at Camp Cedarkirk, a Presbyterian youth camp located in Lithia, Florida, where she met her husband, Kevin Webber. They were also wed in the Dade City church in 2008. Her father is currently the ruling elder at the church.
“We’re fortunate to have many multi-generational families who attend our church, but we’re the first to have an ordained minister in our family,” said Peggy Curington.
On Sunday, August 14, it all came full circle when Callie returned to First Presbyterian Church as a guest minister, bringing along her two young children, Molly and Ben ages 5 and 7 respectively. Callie, who currently works as a Grief Counselor for Tidewell Hospice in Ellenton, became an ordained Presbyterian minister following her education at Union Theology Seminary in New York. Her husband also graduated from the seminary, but his true passion was teaching advanced math. He currently teaches online courses for the Florida Virtual Academy.
But for Callie, this sermon hit particularly close to home. First Presbyterian is in the process of selecting a new pastor to lead them, and is welcoming visiting ministers from around Tampa Bay each Sunday to lead them in worship.
“I’m a visiting minister for many Presbyterian Churches, so I realize the challenges a church faces in finding and retaining the right person,” said Callie.
“It’s a process,” said Jean Larkin Weightman. “First we have to find the right person, then we have to attract them to our wonderful little town. It’s a big move for everyone, so it takes time. But we’re hopeful we’ll find a new pastor soon.”
The church as established a selection committee to find a new minister, which consists of Gary Carr, Eva Harris, Lynn Plazewski, Bob Sandborn, Jean Weightman, Clay Mickler as its chair, and Callie’s Mom Peggy is the recorder for the group.
Meanwhile, Callie expects to come back to fill in again before the new pastor is found.
“I love coming back to this church. It’s like coming home,” Callie said.
About First Presbyterian Church: First Presbyterian Church of Dade City was organized on January 13, 1889 by the Rev. L. H. Wilson, an evangelist of St. John’s Presbytery of Florida. Sunday worship is at 10:30 a.m. and adult Sunday school is available at 9:30 a.m. Children’s Sunday school programs are also available. The church also offers meeting spaces for individuals and organizations not associated with the church for a minimal fee.