Newcomers

You are very welcome!  Here are answers to some questions you may have, especially if you don’t usually go to church:

What do I do when I come in?
Someone will offer you a notice sheet and some books for the service (although much of it will be projected onto a screen).  Please sit anywhere you like. If in doubt ask the person on duty by the door.

We follow a modern form of Church of England service from a booklet or on the screen (using PowerPoint). Those who are able to do so usually stand for singing and the ‘creed’ (the statement of what Christians believe) and sit for other parts. We sing some modern songs and traditional hymns, accompanied by a piano and guitar, and sometimes other instruments. Someone reads out some prayers and we say ‘Amen’ at the end to show we want to make the prayer ours. We also have a reading from the Bible and one of the staff speaks about the Bible passage, relating it to our lives.

What about children?
Children are welcome and some come along with their parents each Sunday.  There is a small play area at the back of church for smaller children, and in school termtime we have activities with a Bible theme for those aged 3 and upwards, which take place in the St Andrew’s Centre next to the church. Children stay in the service for the first part, and then go out together for their activities.  Once a month (usually on the first Sunday) we have a slightly shorter ‘family service’ for all the family.

What is Holy Communion?
Once a month (on the second Sunday in the month) we have a ‘communion’ service (called ‘eucharist’, meaning ‘thanks’, in some churches), remembering the last supper that Jesus had with his first followers just before he died, when they ate bread and drank wine together.  To remember Jesus’ death for us, the central part of the Christian faith, we come to the front together, stand or kneel and are given a small piece of bread and a sip of wine (alcohol-free wine and gluten-free bread are available).  If you believe in Jesus Christ you are welcome to join in, no matter which church you belong to.  If you prefer, you can come to the front for a blessing (don’t hold out your hands for the bread and cup), or just stay in your seat.

What do I wear?
Nothing special; our services are informal so you just need to feel comfortable. For baptisms (christenings), weddings and funerals, people do usually want to wear smarter clothes. 

What if I want to talk about problem?
Have a word with one of the staff, or with one of the church members. If you would like it, someone might pray for you while you are there. Or you can contact them by phone or email via the Parish Administrator (see Contacts)

Will I be expected to give money?
No; we don’t pass round a bag for money!  There is one at the door but this is for regular church members who like to contribute to church expenses. Visitors are not expected to do so.

Will I have to say anything in public?
No – don’t worry!  But if you are a godparent at a baptism (christening), you will have to agree in public to certain promises. You need to check these out first so that you’re not taken by surprise and so that you can make the promises sincerely!

How long does it last? 
Services usually last round about an hour. Family services, when the children stay in church all the time, are a bit shorter.

What happens afterwards?
There is tea, coffee and squash with biscuits (or sometimes a healthy alternative of fruit) and we have a chance to chat. Stay as long as you like! 

Sunday services | Find us

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