What to Expect

What to Expect

Our 10:30 Sunday service lasts about an hour and a half. You will enjoy both a contemporary praise band and hymns with an organist. We take communion every week at the end of the service. Childcare is available for children under 5. Kids 5-12 leave for part of the service for children’s church time. Check out our Children’s Ministry page for more information about what kids can expect at Good Shepherd. Here is what a 10:30 service on Sunday is like:

Welcome

When you enter the church you will be welcomed by our greeters and other members of the congregation. People will be dressed in many different styles: suit and tie, ethnic dress, business casual or jeans and a polo. You will be given a bulletin that has the whole service mapped out for you (order of service, words to songs, when to stand/sit/kneel, etc.).

Praise & Bible Reading

The priest and others serving will enter from the back of the church during the opening hymn. Then the priest usually straps on his guitar and joins the praise band for a couple of worship songs. After some opening words and prayers, the congregation listens to Bible passages from both the Old and New Testaments.

Children’s Message & Adult Sermon

Children up to 12 years old are invited to the front of the church to listen to a kids sermon. Kids 5-12 are then able to leave with the teacher for a fun activity and more discussion. Children under 5 return to the childcare room.  All the kids come back to the service in time to take communion with their family.

After the children’s message (which adults enjoy, too!), Fr. Marc or another speaker shares a sermon with the adults. Come ready to be challenged and encouraged! Check out our Sermons Page to listen to messages from previous weeks.

Prayers and more

After the sermon, the congregation has their bulletin handy as it is time to do more than just listen! Here are some things to expect:

  • We stand and recite the Nicene Creed (found on our What we believe page).
  • We kneel for responsive prayers – the prayer leader prays and the congregation agrees by saying the words written in the bulletin.
  • We recite a confession of sin.
  • We stand and greet each other, usually saying the traditional words “Peace be with you.”  (We don’t just shake hands with the person on our right and left, we like to get out of our seats and greet folks all around the sanctuary!)

Offering & Communion

After giving our tithes and offerings, we participate in communion. The communion liturgy is all typed out in the bulletin so you can follow along. Our church has open communion, which means you’re welcome to take communion with us if you believe in Jesus Christ and have been baptized.  You don’t have to be a member of the Episcopal church. Some people dip the little wafer in the wine and others eat the wafer first and then drink from the communion cup.

If you are seeking God but don’t know if you should take communion, please come talk with us before or after the service! We would love to share with you more about Jesus and why communion is such an important part of our spiritual journey.

Announcements & Closing

Fr. Marc then shares some announcements and the service closes with a hymn. The priest and others serving at the altar will walk to the back of church during this recessional hymn.

As you leave the sanctuary, you will have an opportunity to greet the priest and his wife.  Then we hope you’ll join us for coffee, donuts and fellowship in the library!