When entering the narthex (lobby) of our church building, greeters will welcome you warmly at the door, and then introduce you to our guest hosts. The hosts will briefly share what to expect during our worship service, invite you to sign our Guest Book, and give you a welcome packet with information about our church. An usher will then present you with the Sunday bulletin with the Order of Service and the weekly announcements. Congregants may join in the singing of contemporary songs prior to the start of the 10:15 a.m. worship service or they may also view the television monitor in the narthex (lobby) featuring our weekly announcements, activities, programs, and events.
Episcopalians use the Book of Common Prayer (BCP) and a Hymnal during their Sunday morning worship service. The form of service is called The Eucharist, meaning “Thanksgiving.” The name recalls Christ giving thanks while instituting the Last Supper on the night He was betrayed. At Holy Sacrament, these books, as well as the Bible (New Revised Standard Version), are located in front of you when seated. However, at Holy Sacrament, the entire order of our worship service is displayed via a projection system. This makes it easier for members and guests alike to follow and participate in the service.
Receiving Holy Communion
All baptized Christians are welcome at the Lord’s Table, called the Altar. The ushers will direct you to the altar or communion rail and you will take the next space when it becomes available. Our custom is to kneel at the rail to receive the Blessed Sacrament, but you may stand if it is more comfortable. After receiving communion, please return to your seat. If you are unable to come to the altar rail, inform one of the ushers and the priest will bring communion to you.
Receiving the Bread and Wine
The wafer or bread (the Body of Christ), may be placed in your hand r on your tongue, whichever is your preference. If your preference is to receive the wafer in your hand, you may immediately consume it, hold it and intinct (dip) it into the wine, or have the Eucharistic Minister do it for you. When taking the wine (the Blood of Christ), you may need to guide the chalice to your lips.
Receiving the Bread Alone
Receiving the bread alone is considered full communion. After receiving the bread either in your hand or by mouth and consume it, you may leave the altar rail and return to your seat.
Receiving a Blessing
If either you or your children prefer to receive a blessing instead of communion, kindly come forward to the altar rail during the ministration of communion and place your arms across your chest as a signal to the priest.
Children at Worship
Although we offer child care (Nursery) for children between the ages of 1 and 3 years old, all children are welcomed in Church. Sunday School for children begins at 10:15 a.m. and ends usually during the Greeting of Peace in time for the children to join their parents for the Liturgy of the Lord’s Table. Here are some tips to make your children’s Church experience a pleasant and rewarding one for them and our congregants.
- Sit in a seat where your children can see what is going on at the altar.
- Share your Worship bulletin with your children and help them join in the music and prayers. Children cannot be expected to sit quietly all the time but as they grow older they develop longer attention spans and can participate, with your help, in the service.
- Feel free to take your child out for a while, when necessary.
- Children are encouraged to come to the altar rail for a blessing or to receive Holy Communion. Some parents allow their children to receive communion only after completing First Communion instruction. Children, 8 years and older (grade 3) are encouraged to participate in these classes so as to have a deeper understanding of their worship experience.
At the end of the service some persons kneel for a private prayer before leaving. Tthe Clergy greet the people as they leave. Fellowship Hour takes place immediately following both services as a time for further fellowship among members and guests. Following the 10:15 a.m. Eucharist, prayers for healing are offer to congregants by the Prayer Team at the altar rail.