It can be a little intimidating walking into a church for the first time. Maybe you are new in town, or maybe it’s just been a long time since you’ve been to church, or maybe you have never been to an Episcopal church at all.
You will feel welcomed:
We extend a warm and unconditional invitation to you to worship with us. The sign says “The Episcopal Church Welcomes You,” and we mean it; whether you are just visiting in town, or searching for a community that will embrace you as you are.
You will not be embarrassed:
When you visit St. Paul’s, you will be welcomed with a smile and simple greeting. You will not be singled out in any way, nor asked to stand before the congregation and introduce yourself. You will worship God with us. Should you wish to know more about St. Paul’s or the Episcopal Church, the clergy, greeters, and members will gladly answer your questions.
Your entire family is welcome. All members of your family, regardless of age, may participate in the service. For the convenience of parents, we have a staffed nursery during the service for 0-3 year olds and a children’s church for preschoolers-2nd grade, but infants and toddlers are also welcome to stay in church with their parents.
When you enter the church:
Greeters will welcome you and provide you with a booklet called a bulletin that will assist you in following along with the service. It lists the songs, page numbers and special prayers that will be used during the service.
The service is a celebration of the Holy Eucharist, which means “thanksgiving” in Greek. We give thanks for what God has done for us in Jesus Christ. It is also known as Holy Communion, because in it we commune with God and also with each other as the Body of Christ.
The first part of the service is called “The Liturgy of the Word,” in which God’s acts in history are recalled through scripture and applied to our lives in a reflection given by the priest (sermon). The second part is called “The Liturgy of the Eucharist,” in which we repeat the words and actions of Jesus’ last meal with his disciples and make that story our own.
All are welcome to receive communion at the table of the Lord. Greeters will assist you in coming up to the altar rail. The priest and lay minister will offer you the bread and wine consecrated as the body and blood of Jesus Christ. To receive the bread, simply place your hands together, palms facing upward and the priest will place the bread into your hand. To receive the wine, simply guide the bottom of the cup that the minister will hold toward your lips and take a sip. If you wish to receive a blessing rather than the Sacrament, simply cross your hands over your heart as a signal for the priest. Gluten free hosts are also available for those unable to consume wheat.