Whether you are new to our community or just visiting, we welcome you to find rest and spiritual nourishment at St. Paul’s. We are a vibrant faith community grounded in history and open to the future. At St. Paul’s we are inclusive, caring, active and engaged in proclaiming the Good News of Christ to all God’s people. Through worshiping God we at St. Paul’s feel called to seek and to serve Jesus Christ in all persons and to strive for justice and peace among all people in our community, the nation, and the world.
We are one of 155 parishes in the Dioceses of Pennsylvania that is comprised of Episcopal parishes in the five counties of southeastern Pennsylvania. If you are new to the Episcopal Church, be sure to explore the diocesan and national websites. The Episcopal Church is the American province of the Anglican Communion. Episcopalians value tradition, scripture and reason as valid ways of knowing God and Jesus Christ. We express these ways of knowing in our worship, in our study, and in our preaching.
If you are seeking a Christian community, please register your interest in St. Paul’s via e-mail or come worship with us and use the Visitors Cards located in the pews. You may always call the church office at 610-363- 2363.
What to Expect
Visiting any church, for the very first time can be a tough experience. Where to go? What to wear? What time to show up? What’s here for my kids? What can I expect? These and many more questions surface. Well, we want to put you at ease. Your first visit to St. Paul’s will be refreshing, friendly, and enjoyable for your whole family. We want you to experience inspiring music, helpful relevant preaching and teaching, friendly people, and a place where you feel welcome and “at home”!
Here are a few answers to your questions and what you might expect on your first visit to St. Paul’s.
Planning Your First Visit
Going to an Episcopal Church or any church at all for the first time may feel a little strange and intimidating. We want you to be able to relax and feel welcome and able to participate as you choose. It’s good to arrive a few minutes before the service so you can get yourself settled. There will probably be ushers or greeters who will give you a bulletin/service leaflet/program which will guide you through the service. Most churches have pews (long benches) or rows of chairs. You can sit anywhere you would like. Sometimes new people will sit in the back just to check things out. Those of us who are short may like to sit nearer to the front so we can see! In addition to the service leaflet, there will often be various books in racks in front of you or in the pews. You will probably see red or black copies of the Book of Common Prayer, sometimes called the Prayer book or the BCP. This book has various portions of the service in it. Your bulletin will give you page numbers to find those sections. You will also probably see a dark blue book called “The Hymnal 1982” which has lots of music in it. Many churches have other supplemental music books as well.
I’m Not An Episcopalian, Can I Still Attend?
It is our desire that St. Paul’s would be a church for everyone that has a desire to have a relationship with God. You do not have to come from an Episcopal background or hold to any particular religious affiliation to attend services here. If you have a desire to know, have a relationship with God and experience His best in your life, we invite you to join us on the journey! If there is any way that we can be of help to you please feel free to let us know.
What Do You Offer For Children Attending?
Starting with excellent nurseries, there is something special for every age child from birth through high school! At the 10:30 service there is a safe, clean, and highly staffed nursery for children four years old and under. For children four years old through fifth grade, there are fun, friendly, and Bible-centered classes. These classes are staffed with trained, friendly, and well-qualified teachers who will make church exciting and memorable for your child. The children join their parents at the beginning of the 10:30 service, then leave to experience their own Chapel experience in the Shriener classroom after the. All children return to the church to join their families for the Eucharist.
How Should I Dress?
There is not a dress code at St. Paul’s for members or guests. Church for today’s worshipers is not a dress-up event. Whatever is clean and comfortable seems sufficient. Our main goal is that you would feel welcome and comfortable during your visit here at St. Paul’s!
“People look at the outward appearance” we are reminded, “but the LORD looks at the heart” (1 Sam. 16:7).
Am I Expected To Participate In The Offering?
Please don’t feel any obligation to participate in the offering as a guest. This decision is up to your discretion. We want our service to be a gift to you. We hope you will find in this place a warm family spirit, truth from God’s Word, and a place where you can grow in God’s grace.
The 8:00 AM service is Rite I is spoken with no music and is typically a quiet and attended by more traditional parishioners.
The 10:30 AM service is Rite II is a full service including Acolytes lighting the candles, Hymns, Prelude/Postlude. Layreaders read the first lesson, the Psalm, the second lesson and the Prayers of the People. The celebrant reads the Gospel. Chalice Bearers assist the Celebrant with Holy Eucharist.