Our Order of Service
order of service
Welcome and Announcements (Announcements are given before the beginning of worship.)
Prelude - The prelude fosters the meditative and preparatory environment we seek to establish prior to the call to worship.
Call to Worship - This Scriptural reading marks the beginning of our worship as the congregation is called to the joyful privilege and duty of worshiping the Triune God.
Invocation - The invocation is a prayer that calls upon God to be present among us by His Spirit and bless us.
Hymn - This is a robust, moving song of praise that focuses on the attributes and works of God.
Confession of Sin - As we are drawn into the presence of our holy God, we are made aware of our sinfulness. We pray together a prayer of confession included in the bulletin.
Assurance of Pardon - The Bible assures us that "if we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (1 John 1:9). This truth is celebrated as a passage of Scripture is proclaimed affirming God's promise of forgiveness in Christ.
Gloria Patri - This Trinitarian ascription of praise dates to the fourth century. We sing it in response to the redeeming work of our Triune God.
Affirmation of Faith - We affirm our Christian identity and faith by using a historic creed for centuries expressing our unity with the whole church, past and present (The Apostles' Creed, The Westminster Shorter Catechism, etc.).
Congregational Scripture Reading - In addition to the sermon text, we read a portion of Scripture.
[Sacrament of Baptism] as occasions arise - Baptisms are administered upon the request of Christian parents of their child [we practice covenantal baptism] and new believers [if never previously baptized in a Christian Church via Trinitarian baptism]. All those who are baptized are initiated into the membership of the church. Baptism is no mere ceremony, but a means of grace, blessing, and growth for believers and their children.
Prayer of Intercession and the Lord's Prayer - This is a comprehensive prayer following the five-fold pattern of intercession found in Scripture [e.g. 1Tim 2:1ff]: (1) for civil authority; (2) for Christian ministry; (3) for all peoples; (4) for the sanctification of God’s people; (5) for the afflicted. It is concluded with the Lord's Prayer with the congregation.
Psalter - We sing a psalm in each service declaring the inspired hymns of God.
Prayer for Illumination - This is a prayer for God's blessings upon the reading and exposition of His Word. We believe that it is the Holy Spirit who makes the proclaimed Word effective to the hearts of the hearers.
Sermon - Normally the sermons are sequential and expository, verse-by-verse through books of the Bible.
Hymn - The final hymn is normally related thematically to the sermon and/or prepares us to approach the Lord's Table when celebrated.
[Sacrament of Communion/Lord's Supper] on the first Sunday of each month - The Lord’s Supper is a covenantal meal (“this is the new covenant in my blood”) which seals or finalizes covenantal commitments. In doing so, we renew the covenant, recommit ourselves to Christ, even as He reaffirms the efficacy of His atoning death on our behalf. We believe in the “true presence” of Christ in the Supper, that is, His spiritual presence. We enjoy fellowship with the ascended Christ at the Table (1 Cor 10:16) and partake of spiritual food to the nourishment of our souls (1 Cor 10:3).
Presentation of Tithes and Offering - A simple collection is taken for the support of the ministries of the Church. It is our joyful and token response to the material grace that we have received from the Lord.
Doxology - The doxology was written by Thomas Ken in 1709, and perhaps has done more to popularize the doctrine of the Trinity than all the theological books ever written. It extols our Triune God as the source of all blessings.
Benediction - The benediction is a prayer for the blessing of God upon the congregation as it departs.
Congregational Response - A brief response in song by the congregation concludes the service.