What should I expect the first time I visit Christ Church?
We are a liturgical church, which means that there is a set pattern to our worship, and that we like for things to be done “decently and in order!” (I Cor. 14:40) Those coming from Episcopal, Roman Catholic or Orthodox backgrounds will recognize it as the Holy Eucharist, the Mass or Divine Liturgy. Those coming from protestant backgrounds might feel that it’s a bit formal at first, but often come to appreciate the beauty of the language of prayer that we have inherited and still treasure.
You’ll notice that we move around a bit in our liturgy. We stand; we sit; we kneel; we walk; we move around to greet one another. The traditional guidelines are “stand to sing,” “sit to listen,” “kneel to pray.” But you’ll often notice some people standing while others kneel or sit. It really depends on what helps you to pray or to be engaged most intentionally and prayerfully with the worship experience. Try to find the joy in this freedom and not be too distracted by what others do.
Our service is printed out in its entirety in our Sunday bulletin each week, so you don’t need to worry about following along. The only other thing you need is the hymnal (we use two – The Hymnal 1982 and a hymnal supplement called Wonder, Love, and Praise – also in the pew racks).
We hope you’ll feel very welcome here! We all had a first-time visit, and we’re glad every time we see another person walk through our doors. We hope you’ll want to know more about this community of pilgrims on the spiritual journey and join with us in learning and growing together in the life of Christian discipleship.
May I receive communion at Christ Church?
Yes. All who hunger and thirst for God are welcomed to the table here. We don’t check your denominational credentials. We’ve noticed that Jesus welcomed everyone whenever there was a meal, even when the religious authorities questioned him about that, and we think he would want us to do the same. Whether your background is Episcopal, Roman Catholic, Orthodox, Protestant or none of the above, we trust your desire to be included in this experience, and consider that it just might be God’s way of drawing you more deeply into relationship.
But isn’t Holy Communion the sacrament of renewal for those who are baptized? Yes, it certainly is, and it’s so important for baptized Christians to receive the sacrament regularly as a part of that continuing renewal in their life in Christ. And if you have not been baptized, we hope your experience here may inspire you to want to know more about how to be more fully incorporated into Christ’s body, the Church, through baptism.
Are children welcome in church?
Yes. Children are always welcome in church. And we have found that they are often most attentive and engaged when they sit up front where they can actually see and hear things better – and where there are fewer distractions from all those people sitting in front of them!
Sometimes, however, parents of young children need a break. If that’s the case with you, we have a nursery in the lower level of the Education wing of the building where your child will be well cared for by a professional childcare provider. And just so you know, all of our childcare providers have been CORI’d and have received Safe Church training to help us ensure the highest standards of safety and care for our children.