Each week we gather to be caught up again in the story of our salvation: that God has come to dwell with us in Jesus Christ. God gathers us together to worship him, to grow in Christ, and to be sent again into our society with his love. On Sundays we celebrate God's goodness, hear his Word, and respond in prayer and action.
WHAT TO EXPECT
DURING THE SERVICE
Some people are not familiar with how a church service takes place or what to expect at a church they have not been to before. Below are some pointers so that you won't feel awkward and can concentrate on what God might have to say to you during the service.
Our service begins with a brief call to worship, a welcome, and opening prayer--thanking God for bringing us together again.
We receive an offering, thanking God for all he has done for us.
Our worship music is led by a contemporary band. You will notice people dancing, flagging and lifting their hands as they worship. The tone is charismatic, joyful, and participatory. We have a regular flow of service, and we welcome the prompting and movement of the Holy Spirit. Following the worship music, we often take time to welcome one another. We also hear a few announcements regarding community life.
Having been gathered together, welcomed by God and one another, we hear God speak to us through his Word.
After the sermon, we respond in a variety of ways: once a month we celebrate Communion together, often we will take time to pray with one another, or sing a final song as we prepare to be sent out again into the world with God's love. Our service ends with a benediction. Folks often stick around to visit and grab a cup of coffee or tea in the foyer.
We love having CHILDREN with us. They often love the music, and we have streamers and flags that they are welcome to use. Before the preaching we invite children aged 2-12 to come up for a prayer before they head down to their Sunday School classes. Sunday school lasts about a half hour, and then the children rejoin the adults before the end of the service.
Once a month, COMMUNION is celebrated for all Christian believers. If you love Jesus and know him as your Lord and Saviour, you are welcome to the Table. Sometimes we pass trays with the communion elements down the rows. Simply take a piece of bread and a cup of juice. More recently we have had servers stationed around the room. You are welcome to come forward and receive the bread and cup. Children can participate in communion at the guidance of their parents or guardians. If not participating, children are still welcome to come and receive a blessing.
If you are unable to come to the front for any reason, but still wish to partake in communion, please let a greeter know before the service begins so that we can accommodate you. If you do not wish to receive communion, you can simply pass the tray along, or remain seated. Whatever the style that morning, the pastor or service leader will give further instructions.
THE MAIN ELEMENTS OF OUR WORSHIP
- Music - Christianity is about relationship – loving God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength. And music helps us to express our love, devotion, and thanksgiving to God, and in the process to deepen our understanding of Him.
- Expository Biblical Preaching - The centre of our time together each week is hearing God speak to us. God has promised to speak to us through the reading and explaining of his written Word – the Bible. Each time we gather we read from the Bible and then we listen as one of our leaders explains and expounds the meaning to us. We call this expository preaching. The important thing is not the thoughts and insights of the speaker, but God’s message in the text. As the preacher proclaims God’s message from the Scriptures, God’s Holy Spirit challenges, comforts, encourages and convicts us, drawing us to the heart of the Father.
- Corporate & Individual Prayer - Together we invite the presence of God to be with us. We ask him to move us to hear and receive his Word for us that day. We intercede for one another and for our world.
- Charismatic Expression & the Gifts of the Spirit - In the New Testament, Paul explains that God empowers the church with a variety of gifts (healing, discernment, prophecy, etc.) (1 Cor. 12). We believe that these are for the church today, and you may see these active during the service. The Bible is clear that spiritual gifts must be rooted in love, not self-seeking (1 Cor. 13). God desires orderly worship, and He is the God of peace (1 Cor. 14). So, we seek to follow Paul’s biblical instruction: hearing the Spirit and living out God’s love, order and peace in worship, fellowship and ministry.