Over the next few weeks, I will offer a column explaining the various parts of our 11:00 AM worship service. The United Methodist Book of Worship is the basis for what is offered here.

Trinity uses an order of Sunday worship using the basic pattern (That pattern can be found on pages 3-5 of the United Methodist Hymnal).

The first “element” of our worship service is known as the Gathering. The worship service begins as people come into the sanctuary. As people enter, it is a time of conversation and fellowship. We are coming together as a community of faith.

The carillon offers hymns from the speakers in the steeple on Sunday morning. This is a historic way of calling the community to worship. At about 10:50-1055 AM, a musical selection of the organ, piano, or strings or a combination of these is given. I encourage us to use those moments for quiet meditation or prayer so that we may prepare our hearts for worship.

At the conclusion of the musical offering, we welcome all to worship and two or three announcements and/or parish notices are given. At the conclusion of these announcements, the prelude is offered. The prelude is meant to be another opportunity for private prayer.

The Call to Worship or Greeting comes next. It can be as simple as a scripture sentence, or a responsive act between a worship leader and the people. The ringing of the chimes (three tones) precedes a congregational hymn. As the Book of Worship reads, “The people, having been greeted in the Lord’s name, may return the greeting to God with a hymn of praise.” In pre-COVID days, this was also the processional hymn for the acolyte, the crucifer, the choir and the clergy to enter the worship space.

Next week, we will learn more about the prayer of confession and the words of assurance.

Joseph R. James, Jr.

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