The Celtic Communion Liturgy used is that of Saint Columba from the Iona community in Scotland.
The traditional liturgy used on Sunday at 8:30 a.m. is from the Book of Alternative Services (BAS), pg. 230.
The contemporary liturgy used on Sunday at 10:00 a.m. is from the Book of Alternative Services (BAS), pg. 185
You'll be welcome!
We extend a cordial welcome to you to worship with us, and offer this information to help you learn more about the Anglican Church and its ways.
Coming and Going
There will be sides people to greet you when you arrive at the church. They will answer any questions you may have. Pews are not reserved and you can sit anywhere you like. Following the service, the clergy greet the people at the door as they leave. You may also choose to go downstairs for coffee and conversation following the 10:00 a.m. Sunday service. We have a lift, large print materials and hearing assistive listening devices.
The leaflet handed to you by a greeter at the door outlines the order of service to be followed. It directs you to the appropriate pages in the prayer book, lists the hymns to be sung, and includes the three Bible passages which will be read. It also includes announcements concerning upcoming events and programs offered by St. Mark's.
The Books in your Pew
The books in the rack in front of you are the dark green "Book of Alternative Services" (BAS) and the large blue "Common Praise" which is our hymn book. The BAS is our basic text for worship and the bulletin will help you find the right places in it. The two hymn boards at the front of the church list the hymns being sung.
Worship at St. Mark's
Worship is at the heart of the Anglican tradition and is the focus of the life of St. Mark's. In it we profess the Catholic and Apostolic Christian Faith, based on Scripture and interpreted in the light of tradition, scholarship and reason. The central act of our worship is the celebration of the Holy Eucharist, or Holy Communion. In this offering of prayer and praise we recall our Lord's life, death and resurrection through word and sacrament. We celebrate the Eucharist at all services at St. Mark's. The services we offer are found on another page in this website but, generally, we alternate each week between the traditional and contemporary forms of worship as found in the "Book of Alternative Services" which is one of two prayers books used by the Anglican Church in Canada.
Sunday School and Nursery
Children are warmly welcomed at St. Mark's! Our nursery and Sunday School, called the Lion's Den, are located in the Education Wing.... go down the stairs and through the Parish Hall. Our Sunday School program is for children of all ages and begins at 10:00 a.m. every Sunday and concludes at the end of the service. Our Children's Ministry Coordinator is Tracey Croft and can be reached at (519) 941-0640 or email@example.com
Receiving Holy Communion
St. Mark's has an open Communion policy and all baptised persons, including children over the age of 7, are invited to receive Communion. Children between the ages of 5 and 7 may also receive Communion provided they have attended the necessary instruction classes (held every spring during our regular Sunday School hours). Anglicans go up to the communion rail for communion, rather than sitting in their pews and passing around individual cups. The sidespersons will let you know when it's your time to go forward. Anglicans receive communion in two kinds... a small wafer of unleavened bread placed in the palm of your hand by the priest ... and wine from a common chalice, or cup. If you prefer not to drink from the common cup fold your arms across your chest after receiving the bread. If you prefer not to take Communion, you are invited to come forward for a blessing. Simply fold your arms across your chest and you will be blessed in God's name. It is likely that some members of the congregation will choose not to come forward at all, and that's okay too! If it is your preference, simply remain where you are.
Music has a very important place in worship at St. Mark's. On Sundays at 10:00 a.m., the choir assists us in worship. Some parts of the service are sung by the celebrant (priest) alone, and some by the celebrant, choir and congregation together. Our Music Ministry Coordinator is Pam Claridge and if you are interested in joining the choir, please call the church (519) 941-0640 or email us firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sit, Stand, or Kneel?
There are no "rules" about this. Most members of the congregation kneel to pray. But please feel free to sit if you are more comfortable doing so.
To add to the beauty and festivity of the services, and to signify their special ministries, the clergy and other lay ministers wear vestments. The most familiar vestment is the alb, a white tunic with sleeves that covers the body from neck to ankles. Over it, ordained clergy wear a stole, a narrow band of coloured fabric. For the celebration of holy communion, the priest frequently wears a chasuble, a circular garment that envelopes the body, over the alb and stole. The deacon's corresponding vestment has sleeves and is called a dalmatic. At St. Mark's, Lay Readers and Chalice Bearers also wear dalmatics. The colours of these vestments change with the seasons and holy days of the Church Year.... white, red, purple, and green. The members of the choir also wear colourful vestments.
Through the Week
Sunday worship at St. Mark's renews us as members of the Body of Christ. We are then sent as Christ's followers to minister in every area of life. The opportunities to share, to grow and to serve are limitless. We invite you to share the wider life of our church family (which includes over 70 million Anglicans worldwide!) St. Mark's hosts or sponsors numerous groups and programs.
You Will Not be Embarrassed
When you visit us at St. Mark's, you will be our respected and welcome guest. You will not be singled out in an embarrassing way, nor asked to stand before the congregation nor to come forward. You will worship God with us.
We invite you to make St. Mark's your church home. Express your interest to a sidesperson or clergy(email@example.com). We make available offering envelopes if you would like them and PAP (pre approved payment) is available or you can give online (go to "Donate" on the pulldown menu). The use of any of these options enables us to provide you with a receipt for tax purposes at year end.