When you enter one of our five beautiful church buildings, you will normally find someone to welcome you and give you any books you might need.
Please sit anywhere you like.
If you are new to church, then it might help to sit near the back, where you can see what everyone else is doing. Or you might like to ask the person handing out books to suggest someone to sit beside you and guide you through anything unfamiliar. Whereever you sit, please don't worry about 'getting it wrong'. It's not unusual for even the most regular churchgoers to chime in with the priest's words by mistake, or sit down when everyone else is still standing - and nobody minds!
Before the service, some people will be chatting or helping to prepare for worship, while others are sitting in silent prayer. Please do whatever feels most comfortable for you.
During the service
Service sheets or books will guide you through the service. Follow the links in the menu on the left, to find more information about different types of service on offer in Dassett Magna and when they take place.
The service sheets include guidance about when we usually stand or sit, but if you are unable to change positions easily, or find it difficult to stand for any length of time, then you are very welcome to remain seated throughout.The service leader should let us know if we need to skip pages or do anything different. We really do try not to get this wrong, so that you won't find that there's a part of the service where everyone seems to know what's happening except you - but if we do, then please remember that this is our mistake not yours, and just join in by listening at that point.
Similarly, if you don't know one of the hymns or songs that we sing, then please don't worry. The words of the song may still be very meaningful for you to read, and as you hear the tune repeated through the verses you may feel able to join in.
During one of the hymns in the middle of the service, it's likely that an offering will be taken. The service sheet may describe this as the "offertory" hymn, and someone will come pass a collection plate along each row of people. We need to take a collection, as this is our main source of income: in the UK the church does not receive government or council money, so church members' giving is what pays for our priest and other ministry costs, and for the upkeep of our historic buildings. As a visitor, you should feel free either to pass on the collection plate or to contribute if you wish. There is no 'right' amount to contribute: each of us gives what we feel called by God to give.
At the end of the service
We usually remain standing while the person or people who have led the service walk to the back of the church, and then we sit for a few moments in silent prayer or reflection.
Afterwards, many people like to remain in church to chat together. Tea/coffee and biscuits/cake are often served at this time (there is no charge for the refreshments, which are donated by church members). Please do join us for this time of fellowship, which will also give you chance to ask any questions you might have.
We try to be as welcoming as possible, but if we get it wrong - if people are either so deep in conversation that you feel left out, or so very 'welcoming' that you feel overwhelmed - then please do let us know. God is perfect but we are not!
Sometimes people worry about what to wear to church. We are interested in you, not what you are wearing. Some people like to dress smartly for church and others dress casually: please wear whatever makes you feel comfortable.
Please note that our ancient church buildings do not match modern standards of heating. In winter they are cold. Please wrap up warm, so that you can relax and enjoy the service. Some of us even bring hot water bottles!
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