The worship of God is the primary purpose of any church. This is how we carry this out at Church of the Redeemer.
What is your worship style?
The type of Christian spirituality that you’ll find when visiting Redeemer is deeply rooted in our catholic and Anglican heritage. It is a modern expression of an ancient faith.
- Our church life follows the seasons of the church year—Advent, Christmas, Epiphany, Lent, Easter, and the season after Pentecost. Adjustments are made to the music and church decorations to fit each season.
- Our services follow the 1979 Book of Common Prayer or other authorized texts by the General Convention of the Episcopal Church. The “common” in Common Prayer means that all Episcopalians share a common basis of our worship, even when there are stylistic differences in individual congregations. We worship following patterns used around the world and through the ages.
On Sunday mornings, we light candles. Sometimes we burn incense, ring bells, and are sprinkled with holy water. Some of us cross ourselves, but no one has to do that. On Sunday mornings, we celebrate the Eucharist, which all baptized Christians may receive. Services at other times of the week can be different.
There’s solemnity and joy. There is also laughing and joking. And there is the occasional mix-up.
What are these books, and how do I use them?
When visiting, you will see we use three books during worship:
- Book of Common Prayer
- The Hymnal 1982
- A supplemental book of hymns called Wonder, Love & Praise.
The first Book of Common Prayer was created hundreds of years ago in England during a time of intense religious conflict to help Catholics and Protestants worship together in a united Church of England. The Episcopal Church in the United States carries on this tradition. The BCP contains prayers and liturgies ancient and new. Even if you may prefer a different worship style than what is found in a particular Episcopal Church, you can still worship because your part in worship is provided.
On occasion a liturgical text may be taken from other sources authorized by the General Convention of the Episcopal Church, in addition to the Book of Common Prayer. Music may come from sources that are congruent with any of the authorized texts.
The Sunday Bulletin that you receive tells you when visiting which pages to turn to during the service. Your neighbors in the pews will be happy to help you.
What is the Holy Eucharist?
[T]he Eucharist isn’t a performance at which we are an audience of spectators. It is a mysterious and powerfully transforming encounter with God. We are called to be active participants in the Eucharistic liturgy, so that God’s power and grace may be manifest in our lives.
The Holy Eucharist is central to our Sunday worship service. This is also known as the Lord’s Supper, Holy Communion, or Mass.
The Episcopal Church welcomes all baptized Christians to receive Communion. If you are not a baptized Christian, please feel free to come forward with fellow worshipers to receive a blessing from the priest.
We believe that, in the Bread and Wine of the Eucharist, our Lord is present among us. We use real wine at the Eucharist, not grape juice, mixed with a little water.
How do I take Communion?
Taking the Holy Eucharist is as easy as eating and drinking.
When you get to the front of the line, step close to the priest with your hands out and palms up. The priest places the wafer in your outstretched hands, saying, “The Body of Christ, the Bread of Heaven.” You may respond, “Amen” to show your agreement. You may eat the consecrated bread right then (most do), or carry the bread with you to the next station for the chalice bearer to dip it in the wine and give it to you (called intiction.)
- If you are only coming for a blessing instead of receiving communion, cross your arms over your chest in an “×.” This lets the priest know that you won’t be taking Communion.
When you reach the chalice bearer, he or she will offer you the cup to drink from, with the words, “The Blood of Christ, the Cup of Salvation.” Again, you may respond “Amen” to show your agreement. Help the chalice bearer guide the cup to your lips and take a drink. If you prefer to receive by intinction, hand the consecrated bread to the chalice bearer, so this person can dip the bread in the wine and place it on your tongue.
Church of the Redeemer
Church of the Redeemer is at 6210 181st Street in Kenmore, Washington. We are a short distance north of Bothell Way, near the Burke-Gilman Trail. The entrance looks like a gravel driveway. The campus is larger on the inside than it is on the outside.
The Episcopal Church welcomes you.