Introducing St. Paul’s New 9 am Service: an engaging, family-friendly service
When designing the new 9 am service we focused on three themes: Welcome, Formation, and Participation. The liturgy itself will use traditional elements of the Episcopal service, but will also offer pieces explicitly for our youngest parishioners.
The new 9 am service is open to people of all ages and walks of life, but you’ll find elements in this service that engage our youngest parishioners — like movement, real bread, and musical instruments for them to play during the closing hymn.
Each week, we’ll begin with a “ministry moment” that will help connect particular pieces of the service to one’s faith formation.
We’re looking for kids ages 6-9 (pre-acolyte age) to be bell-ringers and oblation bearers (bringing up the bread and wine at the offertory), for families to sign up as ushers and to lead the prayers of the people together, and finally for bread bakers. The children’s choirs will be apart of the service on a regular basis, and when they aren’t singing a prepared anthem, we hope their enthusiastic voices will lead the service! The most noticeable difference regarding participation is that everyone will gather around the altar for the Eucharistic Prayer and closing hymn. (If standing is difficult, anyone can choose to sit in a front pew or on one of the chairs or benches on the altar.)
To sign up for any of these new roles, contact The Rev. Alyse Viggiano (firstname.lastname@example.org).
As with most new undertakings, changes to the 9 am service will be a work in progress, so we are looking for people to explore the question, “How is the 9 am service doing?” with us. If this sounds intriguing to you, or if you have more questions, please contact The Rev. Elizabeth Rees (email@example.com).
We invite everyone who attends to help create an atmosphere that is warm, flexible, and informal so kids feel they belong, parents feel comfortable when young ones squirm, all in order that everyone feels fed as one Body in Christ.