Our welcome mat is wide…all are welcome! For those visiting for the first time, we wanted to provide additional information to put your mind at ease as you join us in worship.
Below are questions folks frequently ask before attending our worship service.
Please note that during the COVID-19 Pandemic, as of September 2021 we are now worshipping in-person. Some of these details below may have changed slightly, but no matter how you are joining us (in-person or online) the spirit of the answers below remain true!
What to expect….
Worship is Sundays at 10am and lasts about an hour.
When should I arrive?
On Sunday mornings we worship at 10 AM. Our building is on the corner of Woburn Street and Sanborn Street right behind town hall.
We encourage you to come a bit before 10 AM on your first visit so we can help you get oriented. If you come a little late, that’s okay! Our Deacons and Ushers will welcome you and help you settle into worship.
Where should I park and what door should I use?
Feel free to park on Sanborn Street or in the parking lot behind Town Hall. Please do not park in the Baptist Church parking lot.
The easiest parking is in the Town Hall parking lot. Enter through the door to the church that says Creative Arts and take your second left. You will pass the conference room on your right, go down a short ramp and the sanctuary will be straight ahead.
If you park on Sanborn Street you can enter through the side doors labeled office and walk up the stairs. You will then take a right and be greeted by an Usher at the entrance into the Sanctuary.
The main doors on Woburn Street will bring you directly into the Sanctuary.
Is the building accessible for those with limited mobility?
Yes, the best entrance for those with limited mobility is the parking lot behind Town Hall.
What should I wear?
There is no dress code. You will find folks wearing everything from very casual attire (jeans, shorts, etc) to suits. Wear whatever will make you most comfortable.
Are children welcome?
Of course! Children of all ages are welcome.
Currently during the COVID-19 Pandemic, we are offering Sunday School once monthly (email email@example.com to get on the children & families mailing list!). While Nursery Care and Sunday School programming have not yet returned, we hope that they will soon.
Each Sunday there is a special message just for children during the worship service. There is also a large area dedicated just for kids, with toys, books, and activities on a carpeted area with a large table to work at. Kids are welcome to play and work at that table throughout the whole service.
We offer both nursery care and church school during worship. If your child is preschool age or younger you can drop them off in the nursery (starting around 9:45am) or they can stay with you for worship, whatever is more comfortable for you and your family..
Children in kindergarten and up, including middle school, typically stay with their families for at least the first part of worship until Story on the Steps (about the first 15 minutes or so into the service). After Story on the Steps, they will accompany our church school located in room 13 next to the nursery. The first Sunday of the month we have communion and children would go to either nursery or Church School at the start of worship.
What if I am visually impaired or hard of hearing?
We have large-print bulletins to help with following along. If this would be helpful, let an Usher know when you arrive and they’ll get you what you need.
What does Worship look like?
The printed bulletin you receive from an Usher will have the plan for that Sunday’s worship. Worship begins with a warm welcome and includes a mixture of prayers, songs, scripture readings, a reflection, and a time when folks can share joys and concerns with the congregation.
Once a month, on the first Sunday of the month, we receive the sacrament of communion.
Can I take Communion?
Of course! We welcome each and every person to receive communion.
Once a month (typically on the first Sunday) we share a simple meal of bread and grape juice—symbols of the living presence of God in us and among us.
You don’t have to be a member of First Congregational Church of Reading or the United Church of Christ to partake. Gluten-free bread is available.
Everyone is welcome!
Do I need to give a financial offering?
If you’re joining us for worship for the first time, your presence itself is a gift to our congregation! You do not have to give anything further.
If you would like to give financially, gifts support our church and our local mission partners. (link to mission partners page)
What happens after Worship?
All are welcome to join coffee hour in the chapel. The chapel is located down the corridor towards the back of the church. Follow the crowd or feel free to ask for help finding the chapel.
Coffee hours is hosted by various members of the congregation and offers a time for casual conversation and to catch up with each other while enjoying coffee, tea, juice and various snacks.
If you have further questions, please reach out to our office administrator at firstname.lastname@example.org.