I LOVE THE FORUM...you are excellent resources. So my newest one is can everyone tell me what your order of service is? Ours is currently....
Pastor Greets and Prays
Bridge of that first song or chorus
Song (fast or transition song)
2 or 3 Worship songs then just some chords and worship time
Then we get done after what is typically a very worshipful time with the Holy Spirit and I say something like..All God's People say amen everyone amen's and we're into ok shake hands etc. then offering and a sermon. We have an altar call ever Sunday so we have a little more worship at the end.
My question is we've mixed it up a little by having our fast songs, then offering and other business then our slow worship time and that flows into a message. I just dislike the current transition and wonder what you guys all do. God Bless you all for your service!!
Our morning looks like:
One song - usually uptempo
Prayer, welcome, announcements
Set of 4-6 songs - many times incorporating scripture reading (tempos vary but usually move from fast to slow - sometimes fast - slow - victorious (more uptempo again))
FOCUS - Finding out Concerns - Understanding Struggles (a time to mingle, grab a coffee, and the time when children head to their classes)
One song - usually uptempo
Offertory - special number
Closing Song and Benediction
Most times we have two upbeat songs, then stop to dismiss the children. Then we do three more songs after which there is a prayer time or announcements or both, and then the message.
Most times the second set of songs is slower, but this Sunday we're ending with Today (As for me and my house) by Brian Doerksen, as an intro to the Father's Day theme.
I know some folks follow a fairly rigid format, something that ties in with the ancient tabernacle and temple symbols. I tend not to think you need to be that set. God works through many different forms, and besides, people can get in a rut!
We are very deliberate with our order of service. I am a firm believer that everything we do during the worship service we can sit back and give biblical credence to why we do what we do.
We are not a liturgical church, per se, but our order of service comes off as a little liturgical to some.
Here is our typical Sunday morning order of service..
Welcome and Greet Each Other (Hand shake etc.)
Time of introspection and confession--Our Pastor has a short talk regarding our need to be right with God before we enter his presence in Worship. This includes confessing our sins, and possibly making things right with someone whom we are not in right relationship with. Pastor closes this time with prayer.
Call to Worship--I will usually read a couple of verses from an appropriate Psalm.
Let me pause right here and answer the question...Why don't you start with a song? Or something else exciting... The reason is this: Everything that can not conceivably be called "worship" is placed before the call to worship, or after the benediction. The "Worship time" is all for God. If an announcement is forgotten, to bad...this is God's time now.
After the Call to Worship...
Then one of the following--communion, baptism, testimony, special music (usually our choir--occasionally a smaller group, rarely a solo), membership, baby dedication etc.
Scripture Reading--usually the passage that the pastor will preach from.
Announcements and Dismissal.
Our service runs an hour and half.
Thanks for letting me share.
Thanks everyone for the feedback. I think we may experiment a little with some of your suggestions. I like getting the business (and greeting) out of the way early, I think that allows fast worship songs to flow into slower songs, to flow into just enjoying the Holy Spirit and worshiping which culminates in the word of God when pastor preaches. Thanks again!!
We start our service with a time of thanksgiving. The pastor asks people what they are thankful for and people shout it out. It could be something as simple as having clothing to wear to something as deep as God's redeeming grace. He closes that out with a prayer of thanks and praise to God and then we have a worship set of 5 songs. Two fast, transition, and two slow.(we sometimes do more if the spirit leads) We then have offering and then break into groups of 2-3 and pray for eachother, followed by a 10-15 min. coffee break at which point the kids go to class. Announcements, message, time after for more prayer if you need/want it.
I have been to churches where it's more broken up like what you do, and as a person who loves to worship I found it really diffacult to get into a good flow with the HS because it kept getting interruipted. I personally prefer to have it flow straight through.
In my former church the intercessors would gather in the sanctuary 30 minutes prior to the service. The worship team would join them for "harp and bowl" and this would frequently flow directly into the service with no discernable start to teh service but a powerful presence of God.
It is interesting that we always use offering and anouncements to transition from worship to the message? Why? Because our churches can't handle much else. Why will we start the worship on time while congregants continue to straggle in over the next 10 minutes but we will interup the flow of worship for anouncements. My suggestion - anouncements first at the start of the service, then worship transitioning directly into the word. Offering can be handled by having various baskets or boxes stationed around the church where the congregation can give there offering as they depart or even during the worship service as an act of worship.
we usually have the following in our church but at times it varies..
Fast songs for welcoming and a worship song for the opening prayer,
then song presentation of different groups (men, women, kids, youth or by department officers)
Praise and Wroship
Altar Call (according to the leading)/Prayer Time
At times there are instances that we have the message of God first then a great worship flow and celebration...
There are also instances that we have the giving of testimony as one of the parts of the service, prayer for the prayer requests and other celebrated events such as pastor's bday, mother's day, father's day etc.