Frequently Asked Questions
When are services?
Services are 11:00am on Sundays from September to June and at 10:00am in July and August.
Do I need to be a member to attend services?
No. We welcome anyone who wishes to attend the service. We hope you feel comfortable and leave the church feeling you would like to return.
What should I wear?
People wear a range of styles from suits and dresses to jeans. We do ask however, that you don’t wear scented products because some members of our congregation are allergic to scent.
Do I have to sit in a specific place?
No, really only the Choir and the minister have assigned seats. Some people may have their favourite spots but unless there is a reserved sign on it, all seats are available for use.
What about standing, sitting and kneeling?
There is an asterisk (*) in the bulletin to indicate when you stand. The quick rule of thumb is we stand when the choir comes in and usually for the hymns that the congregation sings. If there is something special that requires standing the Minister usually announces it. If you find standing hard, please remain seated. We sit to listen (sermon, readings, special music that someone plays and sings) and we don’t kneel. If you find it confusing, just keep an eye on someone near you and follow what they do.
How do I know what is going on?
When you arrive a greeter will give you a bulletin, which is like a program to guide the congregation. The first three pages have the order of service listed. The titles of what is happening are in bold. When it is the congregation’s turn to read or speak, the text is bolded. The last pages have the announcements, church news and a weekly calendar.
Do people say the prayers?
Sometimes. Look for the bold text after a prayer is listed. We all say the Lord’s Prayer. If you don’t know the words, or want to check the version, it is found in Voices United (red book) number 921. We say it with the extra two lines “For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, forever and ever. Amen”.
Is it okay to laugh in Church?
Yes, if something is funny, laugh. The Minister feels better when we laugh at his jokes. It is okay to cry too. Sometimes we hear things that make us feel sad or we are remembering a sad event. It is okay to laugh or cry.
Is it okay to clap in Church?
Church is changing and people will clap after special music is played or to recognize a birthday or special achievement of a church family member. Sometimes we clap while singing.
Do I have to sing in Church?
No you don’t have to. You may feel more comfortable to be standing and have a hymn book open but you don’t have to sing. Sometimes when it is a new song we are learning our Choir Director will help teach it to us and make us sing it again.
If I have to leave for something is it okay?
Yes, someone may check to see that you are feeling okay but if you have to go out to go to the washroom, you are coughing and want a drink or some other reason, please do.
If I have a baby what do I do?
You can either keep the baby in Church with you or we have a nursery downstairs. If you want, you can walk with the baby at the space at the back of the Church.
Young children can be taken down to the nursery 5 or 10 minutes before the start of the service or anytime during Church. Your baby can either be left with the volunteer there or you can stay with your child. There is a live video feed of the service in the nursery.
Do you have children’s programs?
We have Sunday School for children age 3 and up. The children are usually in Church for the start of the service and go downstairs for Sunday School after the Children’s story. If you wish, you can go down and stay with your child.
Where or what is the sanctuary?
The sanctuary is the place that we gather for the formal worship service. It is place with the pews (the fastened down benches). It has the pulpit at the front called the lectern that the Minister usually speaks from.
Where is the Minister’s Office?
His office is through the door off the Annex at the back of the sanctuary. It is marked with a sign.
Where is the Church Office?
It is off the Annex at the back of the sanctuary through the open door on the right. Office hours are 9am to 1pm Monday to Friday.
There are a lot of doors to the church, which one should I use?
The main doors for the church are on King Street. The one on the left is used by most people, the one on the right has a wheel chair ramp. Both doors open to the sanctuary. If you are parked in the rear parking lot the door with the canopy opens to the basement. When you enter, the stairs on your right will take you to the sanctuary. All other doors are emergency exits and do not open from the outside.
How accessible is the church?
One of the doors on King Street has a wheelchair ramp but the door will need to be opened. There are no steps in the sanctuary or the Annex, but the floor of the sanctuary is sloped to the front. There is space in the sanctuary for wheelchairs near the wheelchair entrance but all the aisles must remain clear.
What is a sacrament?
The quick definition that some people use is that it is an outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace. To put it a little more clearly it is a formal religious act/ceremony that is sacred as a sign of a spiritual reality. In the United Church we celebrate two sacraments, communion and baptism.
What is communion?
This is sometimes called the Eucharist or the Commemoration of the Lord’s Supper. It is symbolic of the sacrifice that Jesus Christ that establishes a new relationship between God and God’s people. It is a remembrance of the Last Supper when Jesus took bread and wine and blessed them and said to his disciples that these were his body (bread) and blood (wine).
Do you use wine for communion?
No, we use grape juice.
I am not confirmed, can I still take communion?
Yes. All we ask is that you love God.
I belong to another denomination, can I still take communion?
Yes, we believe that there is an “Open Table”, communion is open to all those who love God.
Can my child take communion?
Yes. We leave it up to the parent(s) to decide if a child is ready to take communion.
Do we go to the front to take communion?
Windsor United does communion in two different styles. The traditional style has the bread and the grape juice delivered to people in their seats. The people wait to eat or drink together. The “Methodist” style has people come to the front and pick up bread and grape juice from the servers and consume it there. If you cannot move easily to the front, the bread and juice will be delivered to you at your seat.
I would like to get my child or myself baptized, what should I do?
Please speak to our Minister. He will want to meet with you. The baptism will take place during a church service.
Do you marry same sex couples?
Windsor United will marry same sex couples. The same wedding policy and expectations for the couple are the same as opposite sex couples.
If I would like a visit from the Minister what should I do?
You can either call the Church Office (902-798-2667) or fill out the card in the book rack at your seat and place it in the collection plate.
I don’t have any money to put in the collection plate, is that okay?
Yes, God understands. You can just pass the collection plate to the next person, or if you are the only one in your row just hand back the plate to the person who gave it to you and shake your head.
I have money to put into the collection plate, how much should I put in?
That is always a hard question to answer. What people put in varies according to their circumstances. Please consider that it takes over $200,000 per year to pay staff, heat, lights, run our programs and help in our community and the world.
I would like a receipt for the money I put in, what should I do?
There are offering envelopes on the table at the entry to the church. You can write your name and address on the envelope, and an income tax receipt will be mailed to you.
I am coming on a regular basis should I get envelopes or something for offering?
We have two options:
You can ask for envelopes at the church office. Cheques should be made out to Windsor United Church. Please indicated how you would like the money divided – to local church expenses, to the National Church Mission and Service Fund and/or for the building Fund. If you have other special donations that can be written in Other.
The other option is PAR – Pre-authorized remittance (giving). Arrangements can be made to have a certain amount withdrawn from your bank account every month. If circumstances change, you can change the amount. If you arrange to use PAR, but feel uncomfortable not putting something in the collection plate on Sunday, we offer Pre-Authorized Remittance cards for your use. PAR helps the church manage its budget as your offering comes in every month