This is a brief guide to our worship, to assist those who may be less familiar with church. For full details of our service times please see the Events Calendar
Our main act of worship each week is the 10am Parish Eucharist on a Sunday morning. This service is regularly attended by people of all ages, from toddlers to senior citizens, and it is therefore the best option for anyone who is new to the church.
What about children and young people?
During school terms, a Sunday School is available for children aged 5 to 11, and leaders will gather children at the back of church from 9.45am from where they will leave to enjoy their own activities. Members of the Sunday School re-join the main congregation in time to share with them in the Eucharist.
There is a space towards the back of church for younger children to be with their parents, with toys and a safe carpeted area.
What happens during the service?
The service is a sung service, supported by our Choir, but with opportunities for everyone to participate fully in the worship, and usually lasts just over an hour. We use the words of Common Worship Order One in Modern Language.
There are four key sections:
- The Gathering: we meet together and prepare ourselves for worship with hymns of praise and prayers, including a time of confession
- The Liturgy of the Word: the service will usually include three readings (from the Old Testament, New Testament and one of the Gospels) and a Psalm. This will be followed by a Sermon (usually lasting around 10-12 minutes) which will focus on one or more of the readings or on a theme appropriate to the day. This is followed by the Creed, a statement of our faith, and the Parish Prayers for needs of the Church, the World and our own Community
- The Liturgy of the Sacrament: this is the Eucharist, where we remember the Last Supper Jesus shared with his disciples before his death and where they received bread and wine as tokens of his body and his blood. This section begins with the Peace, reflecting our need to be at peace with one another before we come to Communion; the gifts of bread and wine are then presented before the President who says a prayer to consecrate them and then invites everyone to come forward to receive communion. Those who regularly take communion in their own church are welcome to do so with us; those who do not are invited to come forward to receive a prayer of blessing
- The Dismissal: following communion some concluding prayers are said, the notices are given and the President blesses the congregation before everyone sings the final hymn and the service concludes with a final sentence of dismissal as we are sent out to live a Christ-like life in the world
Following the service tea and coffee are served in the kitchen at the back of church, and you are invited to stay so that we can welcome you more informally.
Worship through the Week
Most of our other acts of worship are quieter, more reflective services attended by smaller congregations. Morning Prayer is said from Monday to Thursday, an opportunity to begin the day with a time of reflection and prayer. A Said Eucharist is held early on Sunday morning, Tuesday lunchtime and Wednesday morning, following the same pattern as the main Sunday morning service but is a much shorter act of worship without music and a sermon and with a more reflective atmosphere.
Sunday evenings feature a broad range of worship styles, from a full Choral Evensong on certain festivals, where the choir leads much of the service on behalf of the congregation, to a regular act of worship in the style of the Taizé Community from Southern France, featuring meditative songs and more extended opportunities for quiet reflection.