Going to church can be overwhelming, especially if you've never been before.
To help ease your mind a little bit, here are some things you can expect when you come to Pilgrim Canadian Reformed Church.
Before you come...
Babysitting is available for babies and toddlers. Other children are welcome and encouraged to sit with their families and worship God with the rest of the church members.
There is no dress-code at our church, but most people are dressed in semi-formal or formal clothing.
We have two worship services every Sunday: one at 9:30 am and the other at 3:00 pm. People typically arrive 10-15 minutes before the service. The earlier you come, the better the seat selection will be. And, yes, you're free to sit wherever you want! The worship service is about an hour long.
When you arrive...
As you enter the church building someone will greet you at the door. They will be able to answer any questions you may have, including questions about where to drop off your children for babysitting. They will also provide you a newsletter including an outline of the worship service (known as the liturgy). The songs are sung from a book called a Book of Praise and an usher will provide you with one for the service. The Bibles will be in the pews, which we share with each other.
During the worship service...
The worship service is primarily a meeting place between God and his people. God greets his people. He encourages them in their faith in Jesus Christ as they hear his Word read and preached. He also strengthens their faith with the sacraments (Baptism and Lord's Supper). Finally, God sends his people out with a blessing. In response to God's grace and mercy, his people confess their help in the Lord God, sing psalms and hymns to him, seek him in prayer, and give offerings for the poor.
The main focus of the worship service is the preaching of the Word of God. In the morning service a Bible passage is explained and is applied to the lives of God's people. In the afternoon service the sermon typically focuses is on a specific topic of Scripture as it is summarized in the Heidelberg Catechism (one of our confessional documents).
Near the end of the service an offering bag will be passed around. The money collected is distributed by the deacons to needy members in the congregation or to other Christian organizations.
After the service...
Once the worship service is over you are welcome to stay and chat. There is coffee every Sunday after the morning service in the hall at the back. Every Sunday a specific family (known as the host family) is more than willing to have you over for coffee after the service. Just ask, and you will be introduced. .