The Worship Committee meets with the Rector and the Minister of Music to plan our worship services. Committee members take responsibility for training service ministers, such as Eucharistic ministers, acolytes, lectors, ushers, the Altar Guild, and others. They coordinate worship services with special events such as the seasons of the Church year, Come 4th Sundays, baptisms, etc. Each year they review our worship services and plan changes to make them better suited for our congregation and worship experience.
A Worship Committee member must be a regular attender on Sundays and should be involved with one of the ministries listed below or sing in one of the choirs. Members need to listen carefully to the people in the congregation and be open to change in our worship style at St. Peter’s. This Committee meets quarterly.
Acolytes are members of the parish (both children and adults) who serve during the liturgy by carrying the processional crosses, candles, and banners. They are trained to serve the Priest (celebrant) at the altar, taking part in the Gospel Procession, distributing the offering plates, and assisting with setting the table for Holy Communion.
Acolytes serve at the principal Sunday liturgy and festival services. Some assist at special services including weddings, funerals, etc. The Acolyte serves with sincere devotion of mind and body, reverence, and an attitude of helpfulness and dignity. Training classes take place annually.
The Altar Guild is responsible for preparing and caring for all of the holy objects used at the altar during the worship services. They take care of the linens, robes, candles, vessels, bread, and wine. The Altar Guild is also responsible for the Sacristy and the Nave, making sure everything is in order for each service. A member of the Guild is always in the Sacristy before our services to assist all of the ministers, acolytes, and others participating in the service. The Guild covers Sundays, holidays, and special services such as weddings and funerals.
Altar Guild is a ministry for those who are careful, who love the liturgy, and wish to see the services run smoothly. Members, who serve on a rotating basis, meet as a group 3 or 4 times a year on a Saturday morning. Training is provided for new Guild members.
Our Eucharistic Ministers (EMs) serve at God’s table by assisting our priest during worship. An EM is called upon to help the priest prepare the altar for Eucharist, to administer the bread and wine at communion, and sometimes to read the lessons or prayers of the people. These duties may be performed at the scheduled Sunday services, when extra services are scheduled (as during Holy Week or at Christmas) or at funeral services. EMs are usually scheduled for one Sunday service every six weeks. A training session with our Rector or another EM is required before serving in this role.
Intercessors lead our congregation in prayers for our Church, our Diocese, our parish family, our community and the world. Gifts they bring to the worship service are:
A prayerful heart and a gift for public speaking;
Willingness to be an intermediary for others in need of God’s mercy; and
A knack for allowing people time to say their own silent prayers.
Intercessors do not have regular meetings, but do commit to being at the service when scheduled or finding a replacement if unable to attend. Intercessors are assigned on a rotating basis.
Lectors read the appointed lessons for the Sunday and special services
throughout the year. They are assigned on a rotating basis. Gifts the Lectors bring
to the service include:
Ability to read and project in a meaningful way before the assembled congregation.
Willingness to prepare and become familiar with the reading.
Lectors do not have regular meetings but are expected to be present for the service assigned or to find a replacement if unable to attend.
Ushers are often the first person a visitor meets, so their first ministry is to smile. Other activities include:
Greet parishioners and guests, giving leaflets and information as needed;
Introduce visitors to a member of the Vestry or to the Rector;
During the service they receive offerings and present them at the altar; direct parishioners to the altar to receive the Holy Eucharist; make sure the Eucharistic Ministers see any parishioners who need to receive communion at their seats;
After the service is over, they help anyone who needs information or directions; and straighten books, kneelers, papers, and collect any trash or leaflets that are left behind in the pews; and help take altar flowers to the kitchen if necessary.
Skills and interests you can bring to this ministry are a pleasant attitude, an over-all knowledge of how the church service flows, and an awareness of any assistance you can lend, including welcoming and helping visitors.
Ushers do not have regular meetings but are expected to be present for the service assigned or to find a replacement if unable to attend. They serve on a rotating basis.
Members of St. Peter’s and the wider community gather periodically for Taizé Prayer. This is a meditative form of worship based on scripture, song, and silence. Taizé ministers offer many gifts. On the preceding Sunday, a small crew prepares our worship space with dozens of candles (and occasionally soaring banners). Before the service, candles are lit, and leaflets and chant books are set out. At the service, assigned participants play accompaniment, offer welcome remarks, and read the psalm, scripture, intercessions, and closing prayer. All in attendance join in singing the short, meditative chants. At the end of the service, another small team stays to put everything away. New volunteers are welcome to become involved either by planning and preparing behind the scenes, or by filling musical or speaking/reading roles during the service. We have music for keyboard, classical guitar, recorder, flute, and other instruments. Please contact the church office for more information.
Our Tech Team is responsible for live-streaming our services via our Facebook page and Youtube. St. Peter's began streaming in 2020 when the COVID lockdown began and we were unable to worship together in the church. While the first streaming was done by our rector via her iPhone, we now have a dedicated tech team who use sophisticated equipment to produce professional quality live streaming/video.
Each Sunday there are usually two techs. One sets up the streaming software, inputs all the service details into the overlays, handles the sound, sets up the streams to Facebook and Youtube, chooses the shots to broadcast during the service, controls the two IP cameras, monitors the stream for sound issues and comments to broadcast to the local TV and troubleshoots any streaming issues. The videographer handles the main camera, picking out good shots, panning around the church, making sure the important shots are live, making sure the camera's contrast, brightness and focus is right. The videographer also makes sure the equipment turns on and connects to the laptop software, and that shots are well composed with smooth tripod operation transitioning from various angles.
Outside the service, the team researches technology (equipment, ISP, etc) to be sure our operation is efficient and economical. They also handle any video or audio coming from outside sources so they are able to be played. And they set up, configure and maintain any software or hardware coming in.
Although our church is open again and Sunday worship has returned to normal, many people still join us for virtual worship or to view the video later in the week. Streaming is and will continue to be a vital part of St. Peter's worship ministry.
The Tech Team is always looking for a few more dedicated volunteers who are willing to learn the ropes and help provide this service to our online community.