The purpose of worship at FOGCC is to enable people to encounter the Living
Word. It is not that we just want people to hear the truth; we want them to
hear it as true for them. Not just as accurate information but as gospel --
which means good news! Our task is to create worship services which open
us to the Holy Spirit who fosters these encounters and makes the good news come
alive in each of our lives.
The primary ways in which we encounter the Word are preaching and the
sacraments. Nearly everything we do beforehand strives to prepare us for this
encounter: gathering in praise and anticipation, confessing the guilt or fear
weighing on us, and hearing God's pardon. We then close with praise and a
blessing before being sent to live out this good news in all we do.
In terms of music, our services draw from many diverse sources. Incorporating
classic hymns, contemporary praise choruses, and sometimes a song from another
part of the world helps us to celebrate as the family of God--realizing that
each person has likes and dislikes! The music in worship is a bit like
the different parts of a family dinner--hopefully, there is something for
everybody! We strive to have our music enable us to sing in response to
the good news of Jesus Christ.
While we strive to have different voices lead parts of our worship,
preaching is usually done by our pastor, Rev. Barbara Boss. Barb is a
graduate of Western Theological Seminary and ordained by the Reformed Church in
America. Before getting her Master of Divinity at WTS, she served a
church as Director of Christian Education and previous to getting her M.Div.
also had a Masters in Religious Education. Please know that Barb is
available to you whenever you have questions or suggestions concerning worship,
sermons, or your experience joining us to praise our Creator, Redeemer,
Sustainer. One of Barb's favorite parts of worship is the Children's
Time. Each Sunday, our children are invited to come forward and think
with Barb about a particular Bible story or what it means to be a child of God.
Often, the children's time reminds us that we are all children of God and are
encouraged to trust and obey!
Children in Worship…
Following a Children's Time, our children (ages 3-3rd grade) leave our
worship space to attend Children In Worship. In their own worship center,
they hear stories from the Old and New Testament and experience God through
story, response, prayer time and music. Younger children are well cared
for in our nursery.
Responding in Praise and
Celebrating the Sacraments
In addition to the central acts of listening to God’s Word and participation in
the sacraments, we also include expressions of praise and prayer in our worship
services. These are offered as a response to God’s Word. They are communal
expressions of prayers we offer as individuals and households throughout the
week. Both joys and concerns are shared with our sisters and brothers in
Christ, reminding us that God never calls a "person"--He calls a
"people." These shared prayer requests, as well as the sharing
the peace of Christ, remind us of the gift that we have in being the family of
A second important act of worship is participation in the sacraments of baptism
and the Lord’s Supper. These acts involve very physical elements—water, bread
and cup—that powerfully remind us of God’s grace and ongoing activity in our
world. The sacrament of Holy Communion is celebrated on the first Sunday
morning of each month. 'When communion is celebrated, we often refer to it as
the Table of the Good Shepherd. Sometimes, we come forward to receive the
bread and the cup--and sometimes, people remain in their seats and are served
the communion elements. At FOGCC, children are welcome to share in
communion--this is left up to the discretion of their parent/s. We hope
that, no matter at what age you share in communion, it is a meal that nurtures
your faith and also, reminds you of the mystery of God. The sacrament of
Holy Baptism is celebrated as needed.