When you begin attending weekly church services, it's important to know that you don't need to show up right before the service begins. While there are lots of congregation members who enter the building and take their seats at the last minute, others choose to arrive early. At many churches, the organist or pianist will begin to gently play some music well in advance of the service's start time. Arriving roughly when the music begins or shortly thereafter gives you a chance to not only enjoy the music but also experience these things.
Meet Other Members
One of the best ways that a new church member can feel a sense of community is to connect with their fellow members. While a lot of people take time to chat after the service, doing so beforehand can also work well. When you arrive early and take your seat, you may find that long-standing members approach you and connect with you for a few minutes. There's obviously not a good opportunity to do this during the service itself, but arriving early can provide you with several opportunities to get to know people.
Relax To Help With Reflection
Church often gives you an opportunity to reflect on your life. As you listen to the sermon, it's advantageous to consider how its content is relevant to you. For some people, it may be a challenge to relax enough to reflect when they arrive at church at the last minute. In this scenario, you might be stressed from rushing and worrying about being late, or you might be replaying an argument that you had with your children about getting out of the house on time. Arriving early allows you to relax as you enjoy the gentle music so that you can get as much as possible out of the service.
Review The Bulletin
Getting to church early provides time to thoroughly review the church bulletin. While you might look at it briefly during the service, it's useful to spend more time reading it. Church bulletins often contain valuable information about the church's role in the community. For example, you might read about a volunteering effort that the church is organizing and decide to take part — all because you gave yourself time to read the bulletin cover to cover. Don't be afraid to contact your church to find out how early members begin to show up in advance of the service.Share