Never been to church before? Don’t know what to expect? Moved to the area and looking for a new church? We love new people and welcome everyone, regardless of whether you’ve never been to church before or have been a Christian for years.
DO I HAVE TO BE A CHRISTIAN TO COME TO CHURCH?
No – we welcome people from all backgrounds. If you’re exploring, enquiring or just want to see what’s going on then you are very welcome. We also run Alpha which, if you’re interested, is a great way of finding out more about the Christian faith.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT?
We believe that being a Christian is about a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, not about being religious. Jesus Christ loves and welcomes everyone no matter what their background and we set out to do the same.
We know what it can be like going to a new place and not really knowing anybody. Our Welcome Team are always looking out for new people and you will be given a very warm welcome.
WHAT HAPPENS ON A SUNDAY MORNING?
There are two services each Sunday morning:-
9am – A Traditional Service with hymns and songs as well as a short talk from the bible (typically 10 minutes). Each week we have Holy Communion as part of the service where we receive bread and wine as symbols to remind us of God’s incredible love and care for us, shown in the life and death of his son Jesus. All those who know and love Jesus are welcome to receive communion, otherwise feel free to watch, or to come forward for a blessing instead of the bread and wine (just keep your hands to your side).
At 10am, between the two services, we serve free breakfast with fresh coffee and pastries, a great time to meet new people.
10.30am – A more informal service with contemporary worship music led by the band. At this service we have wide provision for children and families. We start with some songs, after the first couple of songs the children go out to their groups. Then there is a talk from the bible (typically 20 minutes) followed by some more worship songs during which there is a chance for people to be prayed for. The service typically finishes between 11.45am and 12.00pm. On the first Sunday of the month we have an all age service when there are no children’s groups and we usually end by 11.30am. On the third Sunday of each month we also have communion during the 10.30am service. You can always check out our events page to see details of what’s happening on a Sunday.
WHAT ABOUT MY CHILDREN?
We have lots of families with Children at St Mary’s and we wish to be as welcoming as possible to Children. Children join us at the beginning of the 10.30am service for worship and then go out to various groups. We have a crèche for under 3s which is in the vestry at the front left of church. There is a TV screen in the vestry so you can hear the talk if you would rather not leave your little one at first. Konnect Kids is our Children’s groups which takes place in St Mary’s Church Hall just across the road from the Church. A parent or carer needs to accompany the children over to the hall and all children are signed in and you will be given a numbered token which you need to hand back in when you collect your children at the end of the session. There is a group for children in school years Reception to Year 2 and another group for children in school Years 3 to 6. We hope that those who are 12 years old and above will find the informal service engaging and enjoyable.
What if we don’t have Children or I’m Single?
We are a diverse Church and as well as families we also have lots of couples and single people. We also have people of all ages from 20’s to 80’s. If you are single or a couple, married with young children, with grown-up children or with no children, divorced or widowed, young or old, you will receive a warm welcome at St Mary’s and we hope you will find us a great place to make new friends.
DO I HAVE TO SING OR JOIN IN?
We hope that everyone feels at ease at St Mary’s and will know the unconditional love of Jesus and not to feel judged. So whether you sing like an angel, sing loudly out of tune, dance around with your hands in the air or stand quietly with your hands in your pockets you are very welcome at St Mary’s.
WHAT SHOULD I WEAR?
Whatever you like or feel comfortable in.
DO YOU HAVE A HEARING LOOP?
Yes we have a hearing loop installed and it is always on during our gatherings.