Worship Guidelines

Notes for worship leaders and preachers

At ©árka Valley Community Church, we approach worship as an intentional, transformational experience. Rather than being something we simply do as Christians, worship is a catalyst in which the Holy Spirit may transform the lives of individuals and the community. As a multi-cultural community, we seek to give expression to our diversity in Christ, with scripture as our ultimate guide and authority-all in "pursuit of what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding" (Rom. 14:19).

General guidelines for worship at ©VCC

Worship structure

Those leading worship are conductors of worship, as a conductor leads an orchestra, rather than a soloist. The goal is participatory worship which encourages and leads people to meet with and respond to God. The worship leader should try to include a variety of cultural expressions in this participatory worship (songs from different countries, different languages, different postures in prayer - standing, sitting, kneeling) and seek also to prepare the congregation to hear and respond to the spoken Word (focussed in - though not entirely limited to - the sermon).

General Timeframe

The worship service begins at 10.45 and should conclude between 11.45 and 12.00. The children should be dismissed for their activities by 11.10 at the latest. The sermon, response time and dismissal should last approximately 30-35 minutes.


The primary worship leader, preacher and as many others as are able and are involved in worship will meet for prayer before worship commences.


The primary worship leader may consult with the worship team to arrange an inspirational "prelude" music for approximately ten minutes before the formal worship experience begins.

At 10.45, the primary worship leader will call people to worship, or ask the music group to lead in some appropriate call, normally followed (in an order the worship leader determines) by a song or hymn of praise and a welcome/time of greeting.

Elements to Include

Elements which may be included

More detailed guidelines for specific elements of the worship service

Leading in Prayer

Public Reading of Scripture, a ministry in itself

The Sermon


The service will normally conclude with a strong hymn or song of affirmation or mission and then dismissal (by the preacher or worship leader) to go out in faith and in mission into the world.

The Eucharist/Lord's supper/communion

Agreed in this revised form by the Church meeting, December 2003.

The next Sunday Service

Date: November 30


Complete worship plan »