Our worship service is guided by several ideals.
We are Christ-centered.
We believe that the Gospel itself - God’s redemption of his people through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ - should shape the worship service. We begin worship by claiming God as our own God and calling all people to worship him. We recognize that we are sinners in need of God’s grace, and we confess our sin. Having received assurance of our forgiveness through Christ, we proclaim what we believe using the Apostle’s Creed. In gratitude and obedience, we give back a portion to God of those blessings he has given to us. Finally, in seeking how to live as faithful followers of Christ, we read and hear the Word of God proclaimed, so that we may know him better and impact the world through the Gospel.
We are Covenantal.
Throughout the history of God’s people, we have gathered to hear, understand, and renew our special relationship with God. He calls us, and by grace, we have responded. We remember and renew our covenant as God’s people by regularly celebrating the Christian sacraments of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper or Communion. We do not limit who may share in Communion to our own church members or Presbyterians. Rather, on the first Sunday of each month, we welcome all baptized Christians to join us at the Lord’s Table.
We are Traditional.
We believe that no one culture or tradition holds a monopoly on a form of worship which is pleasing to God, but that true worship comes from a humble, joyful heart. We also understand that traditional patterns of music and liturgy which have served Reformed churches for centuries inspire many to worship which is reverent, but joyful and genuine. This also emphasizes God’s unchanging faithfulness to the Church generation after generation. While the pattern is traditional, we do not live in the past. Our worship is rooted in our history, but living and relevant.
We seek to be Scriptural.
We believe in the Reformed ideal that worship that is acceptable to God should follow the principles of worship which we find in the Bible, the unique and authoritative witness to Jesus Christ, and God’s Word to us. We are committed that our worship service should not be entertainment guided by our own tastes and preferences, but praise which reflects Biblical principles of worship. However, we take care not to be legalistic or unnecessarily literal as we seek to live out these principles.
We are Participatory.
In 1 Peter 2:9, the Church is described as “a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for His own possession,” whose members “declare the excellencies of Him who called [them] out of darkness into His marvelous light.” We believe that every Christian is called to share in the duties of a priest in God’s House, declaring God’s excellencies and praises. So, in our worship, we encourage all people to participate fully and audibly in our corporate prayers, confessions of sin and faith, and in singing hymns to God’s greatness.
We are Reverent.
We believe that God is not an old buddy who we drop in to see once a week or whom we should treat with flippant familiarity, but rather he is the one, true Almighty God, holy and sovereign, who existed before time, who created all and guides all nature and human history beyond our ability to see or understand, who is just, wise, and exists beyond all human comprehension. Accordingly, we seek to have worship that is appropriately reverent.
We are Joyful.
While we are reverent, we know that our God loves us, through Christ he has shown mercy to us, and by the Holy Spirit he has given us grace. This is the ultimate reason for celebration! The Gospel is good news, and we seek for our joy to be evident in our prayers and praises to God. Morbid, decrepit, funereal worship does not honor God.
We seek Excellence.
Above all, God and God alone must be exalted. Through the form and content of our worship, through the work of the Holy Spirit, we seek to have worship which changes the hearts of all present so that they experience the beauty of being in God’s real presence. Therefore, we strive to ensure that our music is beautiful, that our service is orderly, and that all is done to the best of our ability for the glory and honor of God.