Type of service: those centred on Communion and those that don’t have Communion.
How do you tell which is which?
All services where there is Communion have the word Communion in the name, those that don’t have the word Communion in the name are not Communion services.
Who may take Communion at our services? Anyone who is a Confirmed member of the Church of England [CofE] and anyone who is a Communicant member of their own church of whatever denomination e.g. Roman Catholic or Methodist.
Everyone at a Communion service is invited & encouraged to come to the altar rail whether as a Communicant or to receive a blessing but no-one is forced to do something they are not comfortable with so if you want to remain in your pew please do so.
What form do our services take?
Sung or said?
Those that are sung contain music, some sung by everyone, usually hymns and some sung only by the choir.
Those that are said are, in the main, without music.
Traditional or modern?
Those that are based on the Book of Common Prayer [BCP] are traditional.
Those that are based on the Common Worship [CW] are modern.
Understanding the services listed in the Parish Magazine, on the web or on notice boards
Holy Communion BCP based said is a traditional said service of Holy Communion.
Parish Communion CW sung is a modern sung service of Holy Communion. The sermon or address will be aimed at adults.
All Age Communion CW sung is a modern sung service of Holy Communion designed to have something in for all, from children to granddad & granny. The sermon, address or talk will be aimed at children but will not be childish.
All Age Worship CW sung is a modern sung service without Holy Communion designed to have something in for all, from children to granddad & granny. The sermon, address or talk will be aimed at children but will not be childish.
Are children welcome?
Yes they are. Some services are more suitable for children than others and whether to bring children is a decision that only their mothers, fathers and carers can take. If you bring them we will do our utmost to make them feel at home. If you want to chat to someone to help you make up your mind please ring the Rector or another member of the clergy. We have Happy Bags for younger children and we provide an activity corner at our 10am Parish Communions with a supply of paper & colouring pens etc. where parents are welcome to take their children should they wish. They may stay with them or leave them to enjoy themselves. You may not be able to see them, but someone can. Find out more about our facilities for children.
How do I follow the service?
You will be given an Order of Service. We have large print versions of both these and the hymn books please ask for these.
How do I know which hymns & psalms are being used?
Those for our main 10am service are given in the Weekly Notes which you will receive. They are also normally shown on the Hymn Board(s) which are easy to see.
Where to sit?
We don’t have a “that’s my seat” attitude. If you’re new to our churches and are concerned you might stand or sit in the wrong place we suggest you don’t sit at the front but sit somewhere in the nave where you can see what’s going on and where there’ll be people in front of you so that you can follow what they do.
For our 10am services we suggest you aim to arrive 10 minutes beforehand so that you have a choice. For big services like Easter and Christmas we suggest even earlier.
For the others which are not so well attended we suggest 5 minutes before so that you can assess the situation for yourself.
Receiving or making your Communion
When we receive Communion we do so in the form of both bread normally a wafer followed by wine. There are no rules as to how the bread is consumed, please follow your own tradition. If you want to dip the bread in the wine rather than drink from the chalice cup [called intinction], please do so.
Most people prefer to kneel to receive but it is not obligatory and if you either wish to stand or find kneeling difficult, please do.
If you are in any way prevented from going up to the altar to receive Communion, please let someone on duty know and it will be brought to you.
What sort of “Churchmanship” will you find?
We would describe ourselves as those who adhere to the middle way in the Anglican Communion, being neither markedly High Church/Anglo-catholic nor Low Church.
We are strong supporters of women clergy. While our Rector Nick is a man, both our Associate Minister Judy & Curate Sarah are women. We are very fortunate as our Rector’s wife Hazel is also a priest [and The Diocesan Director of Ministerial Training] and is occasionally free to lead services and or preach.
For Communion services our clergy wear white albs and stoles. At other services it may be a cassock & surplice. Our chalice assistants wear albs. Our choir are usually robed. At our 10am Communions our clergy and choir process into church led by a cross and the choir lead us in the Gloria etc. and sing an Anthem as we take Communion.
We have both organ & a piano accompaniment. We do not use incense nor do we have votive candles. We do not call our Rector Father, we call him Nick.
Do we have a toilet?
Not in Shere and in Peaslake it’s in the Old School Room next door. In Shere there are public toilets in the centre of the village which are usually open during the working day.
Do you have a Hearing Loop?
Yes in both St James’, Shere and St Mark’s, Peaslake.