Questions you may have
It is not easy to enter into a new community for the first time, but we hope you’ll soon find yourself feeling at ease. At our 10:00am worship we have “greeters” at the doors to welcome you and to answer any questions. Feel free to ask questions of the minister or church members as well. Below are some questions others have asked which may answer some of your own.
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- What times are your worship services?
We offer weekly opportunities for worship and to celebrate God’s presence:
Sundays at 10:00am – Full Celebration Worship
At our weekly 10am worship we have our full choir, children’s message (followed by children leaving to attend Sunday School), thoughtful sermon and prayers.
Occasional Special Weekday Services on holidays and for special occasions.
- Do you offer childcare and Sunday School?
Yes, we offer child-care for infants through pre-school during our 10am worship service. We also offer a full Sunday School program for children during our 10:00am service. Children begin worship with their parents or guardians at 10:00am, and then go to their classes after the ‘Children’s Message’ which follows the first hymn and prayer. This program is free and open to all children. Amanda Spagnolia is our Church School Director, and she can be reached through the church office: 732-946-8821.
- How long are the worship services?
The 10:00am Worship Celebration is about an hour.
- What should I wear?
Come as you are! We live in a less formal world than years ago, and our church reflects the differing interests and styles of our area. Some wear blue jeans or shorts, while others wear dresses or suits. God is more interested in what is inside us than outside. And, you will be welcomed as you are.
- Is there a coffee hour or fellowship time after church?
Yes, after our 10:00am Worship there is a ‘coffee hour’ time for conversation and tasty treats. It is a fun time of catching up with friends and an opportunity to make new ones.
- Is the church handicapped accessible?
Yes. Our church has handicapped ramps to our buildings. We are in the process of renovating our Fellowship Hall to make it much more accessible, including a lift and handicapped bathrooms. We also have hearing aids and large print Bibles and Bulletins in the Sanctuary.
- Do you offer Bible Study for adults?
We offer a weekly ‘Second Hour’ program after church most Sundays on a topic of interest. These may include a visiting speaker, a video discussion or bible study. We also have a weekly Thursday morning Bible Study group that does study of scripture as well as book study or video series. We periodically hold Tuesday evening Bible studies that are announced in our newsletter.
- How do I become a member of the church?
We hold ‘Inquirer’s Classes’ twice a year that give background on the church and denomination to those interested in joining the church. These are open to all, including those who simply want to learn more, with no obligation to join. Then we hold Membership Services twice a year (Fall and Spring) to take in new members. Membership is a commitment to participate in and support this local church, which depends on its members for leadership. It is an expression of baptismal vows, offering us a community in which to live out these vows of discipleship. Please talk with Rev. Rusty about your interest, and he can give you more information.
- Can I Take Communion if I am not a member?
Yes. We view the Table of the Lord’s Supper as open to all baptized Christians. You are welcome to partake.
- What if I want to get married in this church?
This church is a wonderful church for marriage ceremonies, with a large pipe organ, a central aisle, and intimate space. We offer the opportunity to be married in this church to non-members, and have a creative planning process, allowing couples to decide on the kind of service, wording and music that is right for them. Talk with Rev. Rusty or our Minister of Music, Susan Davies, about this. Here is a link through Thumbtack that describes our service:
- What about money? How do I give and what are the expectations?
Like any church, this church depends on the generosity of its members and friends to carry on its ministry. Each Sunday we have an offering. We have a ‘Pledge Drive’ once a year in the wintertime to ask members and friends to make a financial commitment for the fiscal year, which begins on June 1st. These pledges are confidential; only the Pledge Secretary, Head Trustee, and Moderator know what you give, not even the minister. Giving is between you and God, and should come from genuine concern for the good of the community and love of others, rather than simply an obligation. We hold special offerings periodically to help support a variety of mission and outreach projects, but these are completely discretionary. Pledge envelopes are available, and you can arrange with your bank to have regular donations sent in to support the church. We hope to have an ability to give through our website soon.
- Is the Holmdel Community Church part of a Christian denomination?
Yes. We are part of the United Church of Christ, a ‘mainline’ Christian denomination that has over 6,000 churches in the US and a million and a half members. It is a newer denomination, begun in 1957, when four branches merged. Yet its roots are some of the deepest in the nation. One of its branches stems from the Pilgrims who came to this country in 1620. Others are German Reformed traditions that settled throughout our country in the 1700’s. Another is called the “Christian” church that was an early ‘ecumenical’ gathering that believed in Christian unity. In fact the motto of the UCC is ‘that they may all be one,’ quoting Jesus at the Last Supper. For more information, please go to www.ucc.org.
- How can I get more information?
Feel free to speak with our minister or one of the church members. Or call the church office at 732-946-8821 and speak with our secretary, Kam Kwong, or Rev. Rusty, our minister. Let us know if you’d like to be on our mailing or e-mail list and we will get you our monthly newsletter and other mailings. Visit www.ucc.org for information about our denomination, the United Church of Christ.