If you are looking to try out Church for the first time, or have moved to the area and are looking to give EMCC a go, let me help you with what happens inside. Often the doors of a Church can be a little bit daunting even fi you are used to Church! New place, new people, new ways of doing things. So here's what happens at EMCC on a sunday morning at 10:30 am.
If you are coming by car there is a small car park at the rear or there is the village car park. The village car park is connected by some steep steps to the Church or you can walk around the front for ramped access. Whether you come in the car park entrance or the main entrance you will be met by one of our welcome team. They will probably shake your hand, introduce themselves and give you a notice sheet. You don't have to stop for a life history here but you are welcome to chat with them.
Once you are inside you can slide along the main corridor or from the car park down the steps or lift to the Broad room. When Rev Simon Leigh our minister is preaching you will find him stood here to say hello. From here a set of wooden doors in gothic style take you into the crush hall and then on into the main church. The main church is laid out with comfortable chairs and don't worry its well heated even in winter.
The front two rows are usually sued by out youth team and if you have a young family they may sit here. To begin with they may like to stick with you, and that's fine. If you do have a young family and you arrive before the service starts please come and have a chat with one of the youth team in the main hall. The main hall or Moore hall as it's called, is located at the top of the first flight of stairs, on the middle level. Most of our sunday school work takes place here. Come along and say hi to Julia, Tony, Tracey, Dawn, Tristan Helen or me (Jon).. We will be pleased to meet you and take you through what's next.
The sunday school folks usually play in the hall just before the service and then head down to the church around 10:25. If you have young ones you can stay with them in the hall and go down at 10:25 or you can take them in the church and they can stick with you or come with JaM (The Sunday School). At 10:30 our service usallu begins with a word from one of the Church stewards. The stewards organise the Sunday service and lead our church. They will welcome everyone and give any notices. Then we open with a short song, usually just a few verses lead by the choir.
Next the preacher will say hello and a few words. During the opening 10 minutes someone from the youth team will probably say a few words about what we are doing that day. We will then sing a hymn and head off to the sunday school.
If you are staying in the Church the sunday service is at the discretion of the presiding preacher. That might be our minister Rev Simon Leigh or more likely someone from another Church. Often it's one of our lay preachers. Usually we sing around 5 or 6 hymns have a sermon of around 20 minutes. We get Bible readings from 2 or 3 of our own members. We almost always have a prayer time where we pray for those people and situations that need our prayers.
The collection is taken is some blue bags. These are passed up and down the rows. A steward will pass it in at the end and another collect it at the far end. Once the collection bags get to the front we all stand as they are taken to the front. This is our way of offering our minds bodies spirits to God alongside the money we offer.
Services commonly end with a blessing or the "The Grace" the grace has words which many of us memorise and it goes like this "The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy spirit be with you all, evermore, Amen".
Each month we have a service of Holy Communion. We have an open table in the Methodist Church, that means you don't have to be confirmed to take communion. If you accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, you are welcome. A communion steward will direct you to the front when it is time. If you do not want communion you can stay seated or when you get to the front cross your hands over your chest and the Minister presiding will simply say a blessing over you.
If you take part in communion you will be given a piece of break to take and eat and a small glass of wine to drink. Hold your hands out as the minister comes past to indicate you would like to receive the elements. We kneel at the communion rail for the sacrament. At the end, once you have received the bread and wine the minister will say a blessing and the row of people will stand and return to the seats you came from.
We don't use books for our hymns but we do sometimes use them for communion.
If you are nervous or unsure about our services we would be very happy to chat with you or show you around the building at a none service time. Just give us a call. Our morning service is big and lively with over 100 folks. Our evening service is quieter and attracts around 20 to 30 folks.
Hope this has helped.