If there is one thing that a church building is for, it is worship and as worship is so important, preparing for a service in church takes time and work, with nothing left to chance. This preparation involves many volunteers.
Bellringers ring every Sunday before Parish Communion. There is a pattern to this which has been followed at St James’s for at least 35 years: tunes for the first 10 minutes, then a single bell for two minutes to call the congregation to church, and finally rapid ringing for the remaining time.
Flower Arrangers always have the church looking beautiful and reflective of the changing seasons and important points in the Church Year.
Cleaners undertake regular weekly cleaning tasks ensuring the church always looks its best.
Welcomers are to be found in church at every Sunday’s 9.30am service. They arrive early enough to make sure everything the congregation will need is ready for them - hymn numbers on the boards, service booklets, hymn books and pew sheets to hand, magazines and notices on display.
Servers are responsible for ensuring the Sunday’s 9.30am service runs smoothly by carrying out a variety of duties. These dutiesinclude preparing the sanctuary and the altar table for the service, ensuring there are enough communion wafers available and checking that the cruets hold sufficient water and wine, plus many more duties.
Parish Breakfast provides a welcome opportunity to socialise and get to know each other better after the 9.30 Sunday morning service. It is also the opportunity to get to know someone who has come for the first time or who is still just a face to you. Our small Sunday Kitchen Team provide the refreshments in the hall and everyone is invited.
Music in church tends to be very visible - certainly audible! But what you see and hear during a service though is the tip of quite a large iceberg with nine tenths of the work having already happened in advance, usually weeks or months beforehand.
The audio-visual system manager adjusts the sound system stereo microphones to suit the varying voices of readers, intercessor and president, and operates the screen and projector when needed. The equipment is operated from a console desk at the back of church where there is a digital mixing desk and a laptop to power the audio visuals. There are headsets for the clergy and a new induction loop for anyone with a hearing aid. The screen is used to show films, the words of hymns or for a sermon. There is also a camera making it possible to webcast services or concerts. To enhance various musical events, coloured lights with special effects have been added to the church and the audio system is upgraded whenever necessary.