We are informally formal, Christian, protestant in worship; and you wonder “what does all that mean?”
A journey into a typical service…
What can we say about worship? Right now, all we can say is worship is in transition. As Peace Church prepares for its move to OLLI at the Cheezem Education Center on Patrick Square, it enters into a period of intentionally rethinking how a typical gathering will look. It is quite possible that each Sunday will usher in a completely different format of worship. One week the service may be developed entirely around a musician and her spirituality. Another may be developed around a Biblical food item, a meal, a related Bible Passage, and conversation. Another might be “service” oriented. Still another may be somewhat formal, liturgical, include hymns, and celebrate Communion.
Beginning September 2017, each month the Sunday 5 PM gatherings at OLLI will follow the following pattern
- 1st Sunday, Holy Words/Sacred Meal: The gathering may well be the most formal. The language of “worship” along with the corresponding message and music, lifts up inclusive language, progressive faith, emphasizes social justice. Each gathering includes the celebration of Communion, to which ALL are welcome–no matter age, gender identity, ethnicity, race, belief. Much of the language of worship is influenced by what is known as “Celtic” Christianity.
- 2nd Sunday–5 PM, Singing the Faith: The gathering includes a lot of singing. The songs emphasize a particular theme and usually will be led by a pianist. One Sunday might be African American Spirituals, another might be, Old Classics, still another month by be “Creation”–each month a different theme. At the center will be scripture, message, prayer.
- 3rd Sunday, Savor the Sacred: The gathering will be developed around sharing the meal. At the heart of each meal will be one dish related with the theme for the day. The sacred will arise in and around the meal, with the message being discussion oriented. Those who gather are encouraged to bring a dish to share. Those who have specific dietary concerns are encouraged to make sure that the dish they share meets their own needs. Expect this gathering to last 75 minutes plus or minus.
- 4th Sunday, Rhythm and Meditation: These gatherings are developed around a musician or musical group.
- 5th Sunday (when such occur), Experiencing the Contemplative: There is time for meditation, silence and having a Christian meditative experience. We may use Taize songs and other forms of music designed to help enter into that quiet place. No formal sermon.
Worship lasts about one hour (exception–Savor the Sacred), beginning at 5:00 PM every Sunday evening.
When we talk about the God, Jesus, and the Bible it is liberal and progressive.
We are intentional about taking time to hear people’s concerns and pray about them.
Approximately once a month we celebrate the Sacrament of Holy Communion with an “Open Table”. This means that anyone, and we mean anyone, is welcome.
As a church and denomination, we generally practice infant baptism (a welcoming into the family of God) but respect the right of individuals to choose no baptism or to wait for a later date for a believer’s baptism. If already baptized there is no need to be re-baptized.