Our main church services take place on Sundays.
In the morning, at 10:00, we have a more informal service which includes having a live band lead us in our music and singing. The first Sunday of the month is usually a family service, where all ages stay together in church. On the other weeks we have a Sunday School for the children to go along to and to learn in a way that is age appropriate to them. On the third Sunday of the month we usually share Holy Communion in the main service and the children come back in to join us for this special family event.
The evening service takes place at 6:30 and is more of a traditional feel than the morning service. In the evening we tend to sing more hymns and more older songs, and we usually sing along to carefully chosen CD tracks. The congregation is smaller in the evening which means that it is a quieter service.
We also have another service that takes place once a month, on a Thursday morning. Cake & Communion is a very relaxed service. We meet in the church lounge, around coffee tables. We enjoy each other's company over a piece of cake and a cuppa first, and then staying in the same seats we have a Service of Holy Communion together, using the old words from the Book of Common Prayer.
Sometimes visitors are not sure if they can just come along to a church service, or if it is like a closed club. Like the other activities at church visitors are always welcome to come along and try us out - without feeling and pressure or a need to commit to coming again. There is some extra information below for anybody considering visiting us for a service and what you can expect.
What to expect when you visit a Sunday service
We're all a bit messy
We’re not all perfect. In fact, none of us are. When you visit All Hallows you will find that we are a friendly bunch of people. But, we are not perfect and we don’t pretend to be. In our congregations there are people who are going through life’s struggles, or dealing with hurts from past experiences, or dealing with different habits or frustrations in life. We may also be going through good and happy times in life. We are the same messy people as you will find anywhere else. What makes us stand out from many in society though is our experience that Jesus and his teaching can impact our lives in fantastic ways.
What will my visit be like?
When you turn up for a Sunday service you will find somebody friendly at the front door who will greet you. They will show you the way into church and where the toilets are etc. What they won’t do is jump on you, sign you up to a whole list of things, point you out to everybody else and take money off you. Most of us were visitors to a church once upon a time and we love to have new visitors. We want you to just feel relaxed and at home with us.
What about my children?
We are fortunate to have really good children’s work on a Sunday morning. There are special Sunday School rooms where the children go, or there is a crèche where small children can go. The person at the door will show you these places. But, if your children won’t settle then feel free to keep them with you in the main church service.
We take safeguarding very seriously and all of our children’s and youth workers have passed DBS checks before we let them do this work. They are all great too and have a real heart for children and families.
Usually once a month we have a Family Service, where everybody of every age meets together in church as one big family.
What should I wear?
Clothes. Feel free to just wear whatever you would usually be wearing. Some people in church dress up smartly because that is what they are used to. Others dress up casually.
What happens during the service?
We spend some time singing songs of worship to God. Some people might put their hands in the air as a sign of praise when they are singing, but don’t feel obligated to do so yourself. We spend some time looking at the Bible, and somebody will preach. The aim of each sermon is to help us to understand what the Bible means for us today. We pray for needs of the world and people known to us. There is also a prayer ministry team who pray for anybody who would like prayer after the service; if we have a particular concern for ourselves or somebody else.
Also, don't worry about doing the wrong thing at the wrong time. The service leader guides us all throughout.
What about after the service?
You are, of course, free to go when the service finishes. However, we put the kettle and the coffee makers on and spend some time together – just chatting and being sociable. We would love to get to know you a bit during this time.
If it is a Family Service week we usually get the bouncy castle out for the children at this point too.