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  • #16
    I've never cared for how church services are done. I like the music portion - supposing they have a good music - they should have music anywhere from twenty minutes to an forty minutes.

    Its the message part that I don't like. First off, the messages are usually recycled and generic - rarely anything new - usually very boring. Second off, because of how its setup - its ackward to ask questions for clarification, let alone debate a given issue. Third, pews are extremely uncomfortable - this doesn't keep me awake, it irritates me and makes me want to leave. I think that after the music portion of the service, everyone should go off to a bible study class. Everyone then gets to choose to something of interest to them and they will ultimately learn a lot more. A short general message - like 10min - is ok before this break up, but it should be mostly general church announcements and such.

    Finally, services are typically start some time between 9am and 11am. If you want to be involved in the service, like with choir, you have to be there even earlier. I like to sleep in, I am not a morning person. Even if I do get up and get there, I'm tired and I'm not going to pay much attention - not to mention hungry cause I'll probably have not had time to get something to eat. Services need to start later in the day! Have night services! Then everyone is up, awake, and has had time to eat or do whatever. Then they can devote themselves to worship when they are actually alert!
    If you have material wealth, but do not give to those in need, then the love of God is not in you. Whatever you have done for the least of these you have done for HIM. To give to the poor is to lend to the LORD.

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    • #17
      Our Sunday service works great.

      2:30pm pastor starts by greeting, asks others to say hello to their neighbors (takes no time, we only have approx 70 members)
      2:35pm prayer requests
      2:40-45pm altar call for healing, prayer, ect.
      2:50pm announcements
      3:00pm preaching
      4:15pm- wrap-up, second altar call (usually a mass prayer, dismisses from there)
      4:30-45pm Dismissal, refreshments in the back, mingle time

      Love it

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      • #18
        Ideal church service? One that adheres to the RPW, which definitely excludes the typical, happy-clappy type services in vogue nowadays.

        Too many think that worship is a when we come together to be fed, to fellowship, or entertained. Yes, God will meet our needs as we worship, but to seek a church simply for the criterion of what we will get out of it misses the Biblical truths. Our focus in worship must be upon what God has done for us and how we are to respond to His gracious workings.

        Such typical service would be:

        0. Sunday School (60-90 minutes)
        1. A reading from Scripture (OT and NT)
        2. Singing: Exclusive Psalmody with very limited use of musical instruments
        3. Doxology and public prayer
        4. Sermon - expository (40-50 minutes)
        5. The Offering
        6. A recital of some portion of our Confession
        7. A closing prayer
        8. Baptism and Lord's Supper (monthly)
        9. Fellowship activities, e.g., a meal

        Note from the above: no altar calls! :squint:

        AMR
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        • #19
          Why no altar calls friend? Is it wrong to be prayed over?

          I also forgot to include the music in our church. Typically hymns, psalms, and some of that "old time religion" melodies.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Town Heretic View Post
            Let's start with Sunday...Out of doors--either along the banks of a river or overlooking a vista with rolling hills (I have two particular places, both nearby, in mind). The message would be relatively short and devotional in nature with a period of prayer and observation of God's gift in nature just prior. Two hymns, sung acapella, would begin and end the service. After which, people would be encouraged to remain in fellowship and would bring food for a general picnic together.

            A mid week study for more serious and interactive consideration of particular passages and books would be offered as well.
            The part about hymns in your description reminds me of a church service I went to recently. It was a Mennonite church and the only music they had were a few hymns. It wasn't completely without music though. They did have a piano for a couple of the songs.

            The Mennonite service was completely different from what I am used to but I enjoyed it. I liked the simplicity of it. It was very basic and very communal (though the small size is more conducive to that than larger churches that I'm used to).

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            • #21
              Actually, I am very comfortable at my church as described above ... for my worship needs ... BUT if I were to want a church that was all about out-reach, this is how I would like it to work.

              Typical church service on Sunday mornings ... but a mid afternoon service on Wednesdays.

              The Wednesday service would be casual attire and designed for the 18-30 something group. Hopefully at a time where all these young people, who often work such odd hours, that they cannot attend a regular Sunday Service.

              Using the 'Sunday School a.m. Bible Study' approach, this afternoon could be composed of Bible study teachers of small groups who would stagger their groups every 30 minutes... so that young people might be able to attend before or after work hours. The pastor might only oversee a large group service every other month... and make it something special.

              Every 4th Wednesday ... the members would break into small groups... and rather than worshiping on the church campus... would go out in the public for dinner or for coffee and rolls taking along their Bibles for their group study.

              Their only goal would be to demonstrate to un-churched people that socializing with like-minded Christians and studying the Bible together can be fun, normal, and legal.

              Of course they should not tie up a table too long - taking away from a waitress's tip money - nor should they approach anyone ... but if anyone wants to approach them with questions, that would be fine.

              I think that the church needs to leave the church walls and make the world their meeting place ... and substitute their comfortable hours for the hours of the focus group they want to reach.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by kmoney View Post
                The part about hymns in your description reminds me of a church service I went to recently. It was a Mennonite church and the only music they had were a few hymns. It wasn't completely without music though. They did have a piano for a couple of the songs.

                The Mennonite service was completely different from what I am used to but I enjoyed it. I liked the simplicity of it. It was very basic and very communal (though the small size is more conducive to that than larger churches that I'm used to).
                So how in the world did you find yourself in a Mennonite church?

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by mmstroud View Post
                  So how in the world did you find yourself in a Mennonite church?
                  A couple friends of mine used to go to it (they've since moved away so they no longer attend). I was just visiting to check it out because I've been in a dialogue with this guy about various church related things. I'm soon moving to a house closer to this church, however, so I may end up going there more often.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by kmoney View Post
                    A couple friends of mine used to go to it (they've since moved away so they no longer attend). I was just visiting to check it out because I've been in a dialogue with this guy about various church related things. I'm soon moving to a house closer to this church, however, so I may end up going there more often.
                    Sweet. I think it's great you're willing to try something so different from what you're used to.

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                    • #25
                      Low or common Episcopalian church

                      Early church service 8AM
                      One hymn
                      Sermon about 30 minutes, expository
                      Prayer
                      Greetings
                      Offering
                      Communion
                      Closing hymn

                      service last about one hour

                      The mooring serve is more sermon focused and appeals to adults

                      10AM service
                      Several hymns
                      Sermon about 25 to 30 minutes, more explanatory, less depth
                      Prayer
                      Greetings a bit longer
                      Offering
                      Communion
                      Several closing hymns

                      The late morning service is more family oriented, longer service many due to more hymns.

                      Larger crowd in late morning service. More social.

                      High Anglican church is more similar to late morning service.

                      Catholic features, such as incense and formal priest garments, stained glass windows, prayer after Communion.

                      I attended the high church as a child and low Episcopal church as an adult.
                      So, what?

                      believe it!

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by mmstroud View Post
                        Sweet. I think it's great you're willing to try something so different from what you're used to.
                        I've not been enjoying my church very much lately so I've been wanting to do some visiting. I plan to visit several others as well.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Ps82 View Post
                          I really enjoy our praise and worship time (Music with reflections made by the worship leader about the LORD in order to direct our focus).

                          I'd love a service filled with men calling out AMEN. I don't hear enough of that lately. I quietly give my amens ... but I would be so encouraged about life if I could just hear more strong men saying it with enthusiasm.

                          My pastor uses a teaching style when dealing with the WORD and is good at organizing his points ... but the thing I like about him the most is that he stands up for God's will ... and speaks out bravely against evil ... such as abortion, etc.

                          Our service is a mixture of traditional aspects and new praise and worship styles. I like this... I find comfort in some of the traditions, but really like the personal lyrics of the new songs.
                          It reminds me of a revival. I see nothing strong about men emoting during a sermon. The focus should be on God, not the chance to vocally emote. Such services leave me cold. The sermon should reveal the Word of God to a greater clarity and comprehension, not a chance to holler out as if the church members already know a perfect exegesis of Biblical understanding.
                          So, what?

                          believe it!

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Ktoyou View Post
                            It reminds me of a revival. I see nothing strong about men emoting during a sermon. The focus should be on God, not the chance to vocally emote. Such services leave me cold. The sermon should reveal the Word of God to a greater clarity and comprehension, not a chance to holler out as if the church members already know a perfect exegesis of Biblical understanding.
                            Hi Ktogyou,
                            To each his own ... There is nothing wrong with strong Christian men affirming their belief in the truth they hear from the WORD of God.
                            God even considers the public affirmation of one's faith in the LORD Jesus in a public ceremony of baptism as a good thing.

                            This may also be why it was said: If you deny me before men, I'll deny you before the Father. Sitting in silence leaves a lot about which to wonder as to just what people believe.

                            I agree an amen can be said for self-glorification, but so can giving to the poor. I'll have to leave judgment to God.

                            I just happen to find comfort in knowing that grown men are not ashamed to humble themselves and show their agreement with the will of God in a public way ... by openly risking ridicule from those, who don't like to hear their affirmation of an amen.

                            Above, did you happen to read my version of a progressive out-reach church that I'd like to see?
                            What do you think of those ideas?

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