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Every service includes a Time for Children, in which a short, age appropriate message is given as the children gather at the front of the sanctuary. Following Time for Children, children pre-K (potty-trained) through 1st grade are invited to Children & Worship in the Multi-Purpose Room where parents can meet them after worship. Children 2nd grade and higher are welcome to remain in worship. There are worship bags in the Narthex with activities for them.
The third Sunday of the month is our Intergenerational Service. Children and youth will be the featured worship leaders. This is a particularly good service to invite friends and neighbors with children – or those who miss having children in their lives.
9:15am Christian Education (All Are Welcome!)
10:30am Worship service in the sanctuary
11:30am Coffee Hour in Fellowship Hall
We have a number of special services throughout the church year:
As you enter the church you will be welcomed by our greeters, and ushers will guide you to the sanctuary and provide you with worship bulletins. The worship service starts at 10:30am and usually lasts about an hour.
Worship begins as the people gather. In worship we acknowledge God present in the world and in our lives, and we are transformed and renewed. Worship is an activity in which members care for each other and the quality of their lives inside and outside the church.
Worship is the center of our life together, a relationship with God, individual and community. We have an energetic worship service–relaxed, comfortable and informal at times.
Scripture readings are guided by the seasons of the church year and conditions in the world, and sermons present the gospel with simplicity and clarity.
We are an Intergenerational community of faith–people from diverse backgrounds. We are deliberately flexible in our style of worship, using inclusive language in order to live our love of God and neighbor with the most open vision in worship.
Prayer is at the heart of worship, and may be spoken, sung, or offered in silence. It is an opening of the self to God, receiving and responding, speaking and listening, waiting and acting in the presence of God. During the service the congregation has the opportunity to offer up prayers of joy and concern.
The sanctuary facilitates ease of gathering and generates a sense of community. Through spoken word, art and music ministries, the richness of color, form and sound is brought into the act of worship, uniting the congregation and engaging the whole self. The Sanctuary choir, Bell Choir, Praise Band Kids Choir focus on the theme of the day.
Loving, professional care for infants and toddlers is provided in our nursery during worship services.
The congregation is bound together in communion with one another, united in relationships, contributing their strengths to the benefit of the whole. Communion is served the first Sunday of each month. All are invited to participate.
Our congregation participates in each baptism by affirming and welcoming each new member in the sacrament of Baptism. In Baptism, Christians receive new life in Christ, and adoption into the covenant family of the Church. First Presbyterian, in the Reformed tradition, understands Baptism as a sign of the real presence and power of Christ in the Church.
Children & Worship is a program created especially to make a special place where Children can come to encounter God, to be still with God and to listen to God. It is a place where Children come to nurture their spiritual life. (http://www.childrenandworship.org/)
All children are welcome to remain in the sanctuary for “adult” worship, but three to seven year olds are invited to the Multipurpose room just before the sermon into a special worship space, with a storyteller waiting to greet them. They sit in a circle, surrounded by bible stories, art materials and other activities just for them.
Next they will hear God’s word proclaimed through a bible story told with multi-sensory materials that children with all different learning styles can value and enjoy. As the story is finished the children are invited to enter into a time of wonder about the story. They are asked “wondering questions” to help them dive deeper into the meaning of the story and to listen for God’s still voice that is found there. These questions might sound like, “I wonder if the Good Shepherd’s sheep have names?” Or, “I wonder what it was like to be in the ark for forty days…I wonder if Noah knew that God was with him?”
There will be a time for the children to respond to the Word in a myriad of ways as well. Some of these ways include telling their own story or the story they just heard, using art and craft materials, praying at the prayer table, dancing in the dance corner, or building with materials such as clay or blocks.
Response time is followed by a shared “Feast” (usually just crackers, fruit and juice), but the children easily make the connection to the Lord’s Supper.
As they leave the worship center, each child is given a special blessing as they leave to be God’s disciples in their homes, schools, and other activities.
The Children and Worship Program at First Presbyterian Church Hightstown is staffed by trained storytellers and supporters.
For more information, please contact Chris Vincent at 609-443-5751 or firstname.lastname@example.org