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Old 02-21-2002, 08:15 AM
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ronsan ronsan is offline
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Location: southern Missouri
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<So, my advice would be to try a smaller church. Look for a church with an older congregation - they're less apt to have newer music. >

This is great advice. When we began our search for a new church home after our move, it took quite awhile to find the right one. We were experiencing many of the same problems that have been listed here ~ problems may not be the correct word I should be using. Maybe it is better to say that with none of the churches we visited during our search (until the last one) did we experience that "comfort level" we were seeking.

At long last, we attended a worship service of a very small church that we had previously been told was (and I quote) a "dead church." Much to the contrary, we found a small congregation with warm and hospitable Christians, a lovely old (very old) church building and a very down to earth atmosphere. The minister (a woman) wore pants and a nice top and cardigan sweater and no robe! For many weeks, my husband was the only one wearing a coat and tie in the entire congregation, and most of the women opted for either pants or skirts and tops It was decidedly unpretentious, and very attractive to us!

There was no large screen in the altar area with the words to the hymns scrolling down, young children were not segregated from their family units during the sermon for a separate "downstairs" time, and each and every person in that congregation of 30 people thanked us for coming to share their service and asked us back again.

And it wasn't in the denomination either of us had been affiliated with previously. But, when you find the right one, it is all worth it!!

I would suggest the following:
1. Look for smaller churches with perhaps an older congregation.
2. Check out rural congregations if at all possible. There are still many, many churches in rural areas that do not "expect" fancy clothing.
3. Call the church office during the weekdays and talk with someone who is familiar with the church's service. Ask about the music so you are prepared for what they offer if you choose to attend a service.
4. Communion should be on an established schedule ~ ask about when and how communion is offered when you call the church office before you attend the first time.

By doing some telephone work ahead of time, you might save some time in your search for the right church! Most important, just keep looking ~ that church you are seeking is also waiting for you!

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