Worship

  Worship  

Altar Guild

The Altar Guild is, quite simply, in charge of vessels and vestments. This means setting up for the services and maintaining many aspects of worship in the church.

We rotate teams each week to set up for the Wednesday and Sunday services as well as special services. Most teams come in on Saturday morning to vacuum, dust, and ready the garments and the altar for worship. We oversee the items used in worship such as the supplies of wine, pita bread, candles, and so forth. We are also the overseers of the flowers.
 
Keeping the linens clean is another important aspect of the worship experience. This includes the priest's and deacon's garments as well. A trip to the cleaners is sometimes on the agenda at certain times of the year.

Speaking of the seasons, we change the hangings behind the altar and on the lecterns depending on the time of the church calendar. Special occasions such as baptisms require an additional change.
 
One of the most enjoyable times is just before Christmas when we decorate the church for the Christmas Eve and Christmas day services. Garlands of greens and poinsettias abound helping to infuse the spirit into all worshippers. Likewise, at Easter parishioners are greeted with a beautiful display of spring plants and flowers.
 
The Altar Guild is a quiet ministry and always behind the scenes. It appeals to those who enjoy being in the sanctuary on a quiet morning with the sun streaming through the windows while working with a great team of women. The camaraderie is terrific and knowing how much we help makes this a great ministry.

Acolytes

Epiphany has an active Acolyte team that consists of Crucifers, Servers, and Torchbearers. The Acolytes serve each Sunday at the 10 a.m. service and on special days as the Rector requests. Students are invited to become acolytes beginning in the fourth grade and can continue throughout high school.
Acolyte Manual

Baptism

In the Christian Church, baptism is one of our most profound sacraments—one in which we welcome new members into our community. People choose to be baptized or to bring children to be baptized for many reasons. These reasons are as varied as the people themselves:  to respond to the miracle of birth and life, to have the baby begin life in the Church, to continue a family tradition, to "test the waters" of the church for themselves, or as a way of starting back to church after a time away. 

At Epiphany, we have baptisms at the primary worship service on Sunday morning. We generally schedule baptisms on four Sundays per year:
 
- the Feast of the Baptism of Jesus 
- the Easter Vigil
- Pentecost
- All Saint's Sunday
 
Additional baptism dates may be scheduled if it becomes necessary.
 
Our baptism preparation program is designed to accomplish several things. First, we hope to give you the time and space to reflect on the meaning of baptism for you and your family. Second, it is a wonderful opportunity for new members to get to know other families within the parish. Finally, the classes offer both theological and practical information about how Baptism works in the Episcopal Church in general and at the Church of Epiphany in particular. The program includes a two hour mini-retreat, as well as a series of five weekly meetings.
 
At Epiphany, we have also begun a tradition of having a parish sponsor for each child, in addition to the traditional God parents. These are individuals who are members of Epiphany, and who can help those being baptized with any questions that you may have about life at Epiphany.
 
If you are planning to be baptized or having your child baptized, or if you'd like to act as an Epiphany baptism sponsor, please talk to our rector.

Ushers and Greeters 

”Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it.“ Hebrews 13:2

 
Ushers and Greeters set a warm and welcoming tone of hospitality at the Church of the Epiphany. Our Ushers and Greeters tend to the needs of all those who come to worship. While their roles are relatively simple, they help make sure people are comfortable and that our worship service runs smoothly. 

Ushers support the logistics of the worship service and ensure that it runs smoothly so that worshipers can make a connection with the Spirit. During the service Ushers primarily stay near the entrance in the Sanctuary to provide assistance to anyone needing it. Their duties include opening the doors and windows before the service, welcoming all who attend and helping them find their name tags, handing out the service bulletins, maintaining a count of all the attendees at the service, circulating the collections plate, assisting the ”gift bearer“ families who bring forward the bread and the wine, maintaining the flow of worshipers receiving communion, checking the pews after the service, collecting the bulletins for recycling, and closing the windows and doors after the service.

Greeters provide a welcome to those who are new to the Church of the Epiphany and assist them to find what they need to make a personal connection and have a satisfying spiritual experience. Greeters welcome members and visitors outside the church as they arrive for the service and stand with the rector after services to help identify visitors and inquirers. Greeters may escort new people into the Sanctuary, help them to find seating and personally introduce them. During coffee hour Greeters can personally introduce visitors to others who can answer their questions or provide information about the ministries at Epiphany that may be particularly relevant to them. 

Often the first people that new individuals and families meet when they visit the Church of the Epiphany are Ushers and Greeters. Because of the significance of first impressions, Ushers and Greeters represent the entire congregation before, during and after our worship services.