Join us for worship!
If you are just visiting or if you are looking for a church community, you are very welcome at St. James. A Sunday morning service of Holy Eucharist is offered at 10:00 AM. This service is also live-streamed on our YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYHTAbPEy4iLdYPZ6DzynNg/videos. St. James also offers a Wednesday service of Holy Eucharist at 10:00 AM. In addition to the regular weekly services of Holy Communion, St. James has several special services throughout the year. Please check back regularly for occasions, dates and times. The service of Morning Prayer is offered at 9:00 am, on Wednesdays.
Worship at St. James
At St. James, the prayer book we use is The Book of Alternative Services (1985) , or what we call the “green book”, and the hymn book is Common Praise, or the “blue book”. We also use a bulletin, which we print every week. Everything you need to follow the service is usually in the bulletin; when it isn’t it is announced by the celebrant. The bold print in both the prayer book and the bulletin signals the responses of the congregation.
For those of you who might be new to the Anglican Church, or to St. James, the service of Holy Eucharist begins with the gathering of the community, which is a calling of the people present to worship. It unites the community to prepare them for listening to God’s word from scripture and for the celebration of the Eucharist.
Once the people have gathered and the opening prayers have been said, the next part of the service is “The Proclamation of the Word.” As Christians, part of observing our faith is to listen to, think about and proclaim the Word of God. We have four readings each Sunday: one from the Old Testament, one from the Psalms, one from the letters in the New Testament and one from one of the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke or John).
After the readings from Scripture, there is a sermon, which is a reflection on and response to the readings, that opens up the Word of God for the community. There will be times of silence observed to give the community opportunity to reflect prayerfully on both the readings and the sermon.
The sermon is followed by three forms of prayer. First, we stand to say either the Apostles Creed or the Nicene Creed, which is a public profession of what we believe. Then we offer the prayers of the people, in which we pray for the Church, for the World and for the needs of those in our community as they have need or have asked for our prayers. Finally, we ask God’s forgiveness for those things we should not have done or that we should have done and did not.
At this point in the service, the community shares the peace of Christ. It is an important practice for Christians to profess their faith, to bring their prayers before God, to ask forgiveness for those times when we may have caused hurt to another, and to be at peace with our neighbour, and so we end this part of the service by wishing one another the peace of Christ. From there we move to the Celebration of the Eucharist.
The Eucharist is a celebration of or a memorial of the last supper Jesus had with his disciples before he was arrested in Jerusalem. It is, as the Book of Alternative Services says, “a prayer of faith addressed to God the Father, an act of praise and thanksgiving for the whole work of creation and redemption,” that was won for us through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We remember Jesus’ sacrifice and God’s love for us through the sacrament of Holy Eucharist.
All who are baptized are welcome to take communion. After those who wish to receive have done so, a prayer is said that asks that God will grant the effects of the sacrament to show in our lives. This prayer is followed by a blessing being asked upon the gathered congregation by the priest and then the dismissal, which signals the end of the service and sends the community out into the world to love and serve God and one another.
Long ago, in addition to the celebration of Holy Eucharist, the Church set aside certain hours of the day for prayer. This was known as praying the hours or as the Daily Office. In the Anglican Church, early morning and evening were regarded as important times for regular daily devotions. The services of Morning and Evening Prayer then became regular services in the Church.
At St. James, we have services of Morning Prayer three times a week: on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays at 9:00 am. On Tuesdays, we use the older rite from the Book of Common Prayer, which is the official prayer book of the Anglican Church of Canada; and on Wednesdays and Thursdays, we use the rite from the alternative prayer book, The Book of Alternative Services. These are simple services that provide a time for prayers of confession, readings from Scripture and prayers of the people. There is no sermon and the service is about half an hour long.
The Church Calendar
Worship in an Anglican church, changes with the seasons of the Church Year. The colours of the vestments worn by the priest and those that adorn the sanctuary, change with the season. For example, during Advent, the colour is blue (at some church it is violet) and the readings from Scripture reflect the preparation for and coming of the Christ Child on Christmas Day. The seasons of the Church year are Advent, Epiphany, Ordinary Time, Lent, Easter, Pentecost and another season of Ordinary Time.
At whatever service you choose to worship,
at whatever time of year,
you will be warmly welcomed at St. James.
For more information about services in an Anglican Church, see the Anglican Church website.
For more information about services at St. James, please contact the office.