What's it like going to church?


Here are answers to some of the questions you might have wanted to ask! And the answers!


Q. Can anyone go to church? Don’t you have to be a member – or someone who is a Christian – or even someone who has been “good”?

A. ANYONE and EVERYONE is welcome at Catshill Methodist Church! We don’t ask your background! We don’t ask whether you’ve been “good” – let’s face it – we all do things we’re not proud of! In fact the only thing we’re likely to ask you is your name – so we can address you – we do like to be friendly! And just a first name is fine.


Q. What’s the dress code? What do I have to wear?

A. Wear whatever you feel comfortable in! There is no set dress code. If you are attending a Sunday service you will find people in casual clothes and some in more formal wear. If you’re still unsure, don’t come in your best clothes – but don’t come in “scruffs” either – that way you won’t feel embarrassed because you’ll be dressed like others in the church. However smarter wear is more expected if you are attending a wedding or a funeral.


Q. What time do services start?

A. Morning services normally start at 10.30 and the evening service at 6 pm. We normally only have evening services on alternate weeks. You can check up on the times of services on the worship page (click here) or by looking at the weekly notices (click here).


Q. What's the difference between a morning and an evening service? And how long do services last?

A. There are usually more people who attend morning services (approx 35-45 on average) but less in the evening (approx 10-15). Services usually last about an hour but some morning services may last slightly longer, but usually not more than an hour and a quarter. We have coffee and biscuits after the morning service which everyone is welcome to enjoy.


Q. Do I have to pay to come in? Is there is a collection and if so how much do I have to put in?

A. Entry is FREE! We do have an collection or "offering" in morning services but - no - you don't HAVE to put anything in. And don't feel embarrassed if you just pass the plate across to the next person without putting anything in - you wll not be the only one who does that. We sometimes have a "retiring offering" after an evening service instead of a formal collection - which means a plate may be left at the back of the church for anyone to put any offering in they wish - but again you don't HAVE to put anything in - and again, if you don't, you won't be the only one who doesn't!


Q. Is there anywhere to park my car?

A. Yes – we have a large car park.


Q. What happens when I arrive?

A. There will be a door steward to welcome you. They will offer you a notices sheet (which is free) and which tells you what is happening in the church over the next week or so. If you want to know anything at this point – ask the door steward – that’s what they are there for!


Q. Where do I sit?

A. Wherever you want! We have over 100 soft and reasonably comfortable chairs (no hard pews!) – and none are “reserved” (unless the choir are in attendance – only a few times a year – when there will be 3 rows at the front of the church but facing across it, ready for the choir).

Q. What would a service be like? What would it consist of?

A. Usually there are hymns that are sung (the words are normally projected onto a screen), some prayers said by the worship leader, a Bible reading or two and a sermon or talk (usually about 15 minutes). Music is mostly from an organ or piano but occasionally we have a small band leading worship.

Q. Do I have to sing the hymns?

A. Not if you prefer not to!


Q. Do I have to kneel for prayers?

A. No. We don’t kneel – we just stay seated.

Q. I have a mobility problem – are there steps?

A. There are but there is also a ramp with a hand rail that can also be used by a wheelchair.


Q. I have trouble with my hearing. Will I be able to hear?

A. We have a hearing loop system in place so if you have a hearing aid you should  be fine.


Q. Is there an accessible toilet?

A. Yes - there is a fully accessible toilet close to the entrance that also has a baby changing facility. In addition there are both gents and ladies toilets through the door (by the pulpit) on the far right, although there are a couple of steps down to them and they are standard facilities rather than fully accessible.


Q. I don’t think I will be able to see a screen with the words on. Is there any other way I can join in?

A. We provide large print copies of the words that you need – just ask the door steward when you arrive.


Q. Can I bring my children? Is there something they can do? What about if I have a younger child or baby?

A. Yes – children are always welcome. Most Sundays there is a Sunday Club and all our leaders are fully Safeguard trained and DBS checked. One Sunday a month is called All Age Worship – which either means the service will be (at least partially) aimed at children, or the children will use the porch area, which is still within sight of the church, to do some activity. We sometimes have a creche for really young children and babies but that very much depends upon demand. 


Q. Will I have to provide any personal details?

A. No. Apart from asking your name, we may ask if you are just visiting or locally based – but that’s so we can look out for you next time if you are local.


Q. Will I be asked to say anything, like identify myself as a visitor?

A. No.


Q. I have seen people take communion in church? Does each service include communion? Am I allowed to take communion?

A. We usually have communion on the morning of the first Sunday in the Month. Most other services there is no communion. Anyone is allowed to take communion in the Methodist Church.


Q. Is it possible to get to know a few people in the church before I attend a service? That way I wouldn’t feel so worried about coming for the first time. 

A. Absolutely. Most Friday and Saturday mornings we have a coffee shop open from 10 a.m. until 12 noon. We don’t all sit at separate tables but tend to sit in a large group, chatting away and drinking coffee and eating biscuits. There is a complete mixture of church regulars and those who just come for the coffee and friendly atmosphere!


Still got a question? Feel free to contact the Minister (see minister’s page) or the Senior Steward or anyone listed on the Contacts Page.