REV IAN SNARES: Delight as Bishop joins Altogether Service

Prayer is always an important part of the services at St Wilfrid's, Cowplain
Prayer is always an important part of the services at St Wilfrid's, Cowplain
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The vicar of St Wilfrid’s Church, Cowplain, on finding a service that suits you

If you’re not a regular churchgoer, you might not realise that most churches have several congregations meeting at different times.

Typically, there may be a traditional service early on a Sunday morning; a mid-morning family service, which often includes a Sunday School; and an evening service, which can vary from a quiet, reflective service to something led by a rock band.

At St Wilfrid’s, we actually have all three of our services on a Sunday morning – 8am, 9.30am and 11.15am – but a similar principle applies.

There are some people – like the vicar – who might be at all three, but most people select the service they feel most comfortable with, perhaps at the time of day that suits them best.

Sometimes that means that these three congregations don’t often meet each other, apart from on social occasions. So we thought it might be good to build into our programme occasional services where everyone gets together.

We’ve decided to do that whenever there are five Sundays in a month. So on that fifth Sunday each month, we’re going to hold what we call an Altogether Service.

The first one of these services is happening at 10.30am this Sunday and I’m delighted that the Bishop of Portsmouth is coming to join in the fun. As well as all three congregations being involved, the children won’t be disappearing to their regular Sunday morning groups, but will stay in

the main church and participate.

We hope it will include something to suit everyone, and that it will be a valuable time for people to meet others who they don’t always come into contact with.

To make sure there is enough time for the congregations to mix, we’re also having lunch together.

If you’ve ever wondered about coming to church, but you weren’t sure what to expect, this would be a good opportunity to try us out.

Tell us which bit of the service you most enjoyed, and we can then suggest which of our normal Sunday services you might like best.

If Sundays aren’t great for you, we might even suggest a midweek group or activity that might be more convenient. Either way, you’d be very welcome!

St Wilfrid’s Church is in Padnell Road, Cowplain.

Go to stwilfridscowplain.co.uk