If you’re coming to Gentle Shepherd for the first time on a Sunday morning, you can expect the following:
- a warm greeting at the door
- a worship service that starts at 10:30 am and ends around 11:45, followed by coffee/tea and snacks downstairs for those who are interested
What should I wear?
If you’re curious about the “dress code” at GSCC, there isn’t one—some people come in suits or dresses, some come in jeans and t-shirts. Our pastor tends to dress quite casually, and you’re invited to do so too.
What does a church service look like?
You might be wondering what exactly happens in the service itself. Here’s a brief synopsis:
- After a few announcements, our time of worship begins with prayer. We believe the Lord is with us when we worship, and we offer our time together to him.
- We sing a few songs to celebrate God’s character and his work in our lives. We invite all to sing, but you won’t be centered out if you don’t! Generally speaking our choir also sings one special song they have prepared in each service.
- The children (elementary school or younger) are invited to the front of the church for a couple of action songs especially for them before they go downstairs for a children’s teaching time. The kids are currently watching episodes of “What’s in the Bible?” during this time.
- The largest part of our service is the sermon, when the pastor speaks for about a half-hour on a passage or topic from the Bible. We believe God has spoken to us through his Word and given it to us in the Bible, so we highlight this time as a time to hear what God has to say to our lives.
- Before we leave, we sing a final song as a “blessing,” a prayer that God will be with us all until we meet again!
What about my kids?
We have a nursery downstairs for young children (under four years old), and a children’s program for age 4 to grade 8. We invite all families to bring their young children in to the service upstairs for the beginning of our service, up to the point when we sing the kids’ songs. At that point all the children go downstairs together, where they learn from their teaching video and have a snack while the grown-ups take in the sermon.
Once a month (usually the first Sunday) we celebrate communion. All who wish to participate (whether you’re a long-time member or a first-time visitor) as a sign of their commitment to Jesus are welcome to come to the front of the church to receive communion from our elders. Don’t worry: when we share communion, the pastor explains the procedure clearly, so you don’t need to lose sleep about being lost or confused about what to do!