Visiting another church can be a fun and interesting time or it can turn into a nightmare.
Last Sunday Mick and I were going to visit our son and his family in Sydney, so we wanted a church that was on the way. Our first step was finding one that was evangelical and at a convenient time. But it’s always a bit of a risk going to another church. Some churches are just not good at welcoming strangers. We know we‘ve encountered it before.
Friendliness is something many people have commented on in regard to our church, so it’s something we are conscious of.
This time we visited Menai Anglican Church. We were made to feel welcome and engaged in conversation by several different members of the congregation of averring ages. That’s always a good start.
The choice of songs was good. Two were modern ones and two were old hymns with great words but modern tunes. The bible talk or sermon was both scriptural and funny enough to keep our attention at all times. The fact that it was from John’s gospel, my favorite, helped too. The minister raised some interesting points I had not thought of before. It allowed plenty to think about later.
The children presented a dramatized version of a bible verse which was very clever and the kids’ spot was pitched at the appropriate level and not too long. The prayers were heartfelt. What more could you ask?
We thoroughly enjoyed our experience there and certainly felt we had met with the Lord and with His people. It set the tone for the rest of the day. We will certainly go back there if opportunity permits.
It should also give each one of us pause to think about how visitors to our church perceive their experience. You want to be seen as a church that is friendly but also one that is biblically sound and where the music reflects the themes of the bible talk.