Worship is central to our lives and all that we do at St Thomas. We welcome and encourage you to join us as we praise the God who created us, gives us new life in Christ, and is with us through the power of the Holy Spirit. Our prayers are offered from the heart and on behalf of a world in need. And we are blessed and sent to join in God's mission of healing the world. Worship at St. Thomas engages the head, the heart, and the hands, shaping our lives for serving the world that God loves.
We understand that you may be a little nervous on your first visit. Visiting somewhere new can be intimidating--let alone a new church! If you come alone, you may wonder who will sit beside you and whether anyone will speak to you. If you are coming with children, you may want to know where is a good place to sit, and if there's child care. If you have been away from church for a while or have never set foot inside a worship space before, please know that we are working hard at making you feel at home.
We have a Sunday School at our 10am service. Children 4 to 12 are free to join the service. Although we understand that children may want to stay with their parents in an unfamiliar space. Children who stay in the service are encouraged to join in with the congregation in worship, they are welcome to be kids, so don't worry about if they make a little noise or wander around the church.
If you're coming to St Thomas for the first time, there is ample parking at the church, or you can reach St Thomas by bus, the number 44 bus goes right down the street and there is a bus stop right in front of the church. St Thomas is fully accessible, with an accessible washroom, wheelchair ramp and lift.
When you arrive come in the main doors and there there you'll be met by volunteers who are there to greet you and answer any questions you might have. Please let one of our volunteers know that you're new so they can help you feel most comfortable.
At the entrance to the church (where worship happens), you will be greeted by an usher who will offer you a handshake and a smile, along with with an “Order of Service” bulletin. You will find a green book and a blue book in the pews. The prayers and liturgy is found in the Green (Book of Alternative Services) and the blue book has the hymns. The bulletin outlines the order of the worship service (what happens and when it happens), and includes the news of our life together, outlining the other opportunities that are taking place in our community. You are welcome to sit wherever you would like in the church--there are no reserved seats!
We gather on Sunday mornings at 8am and 10am. Our 8am service is a "said" eucharist, which means there are no hymns sung. It is a quieter and more contemplative service. Our 10am service is described below.
The service at 10am usually begins with a hymn, and the procession of the priest, choir, and other leaders for the service. Hymn numbers and the shape of the service that day are printed in your bulletin.
For the next hour or so the service unfolds. We will read from the bible, say prayers together, listen to a reflection on the readings and how it may apply to our individual and corporate lives, called a sermon. Following the sermon, collection plates are passed around and community participants contribute financially to the life and work of the church in the community. Newcomers are not expected to contribute, but feel free to give if you are able. Regardless, no one will be looking over your shoulder at what you put in!
After offering the Priest will celebrate Holy Communion (aka Eucharist). The congregation is invited to receive communion at the front of the church, standing or kneeling as comfortable or able.
At some points in the service we will stand and sit. You are welcome to assume the posture that is most comfortable to you. Members of the church may sit, stand or kneel for prayers, there is no right way!
After the service the minister usually greets people on their way out of the church. If you are able to stay, please join us for for coffee and tea at the back of the church or in the Fellowship Hall. It's a chance to get to know one another better.
We look forward to meeting you and having you join in exploring together our common meaning and purpose as people of faith in this time and place.