FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
What should I wear?
Some people really enjoy dressing up for church while others prefer to just come as they are. If you look around, you will notice that some people are wearing their “Sunday Best,” while others may be wearing jeans, sweats etc. The choice is yours. Just know that however you come, you are welcome here! We have been known to come in costume and in pajamas on special occasions!
What happens to the money that I donate?
United Churches receive no other source of funding except what is given by the people. Many people use special envelopes issued to them by the secretary, others authorize an automatic deduction from their bank accounts (PAR) and some donate using the temporary envelopes found in the pews. An income tax receipt is given to those who use automatic deductions, envelopes and by request to those who make one time or occasional donations.
Occasionally, at different times throughout the year, there are special offerings. For example at Lent, donations are often made to the Food Shelf here at Trinity, whereas at Advent, offerings this year were made to Sleeping Children Around the World and Packsack Smiles. Some envelopes are also labeled M & S, which stands for Mission and Service. Money donated to this fund helps with local work in Canada: youth outreach, food banks, shelters for those in need etc., as well as International work such as: building schools, providing water, medicine and disaster relief, as well as many other service projects.
The Sunday school collects its own donations as well. The children, with guidance from the Sunday school Superintendent and Designated Lay Minister, choose which projects they would like to support. In the past they have supported: Trinity’s Food Shelf, the North Bay Hospital, Mission and Service, Hope2Kenya, Spread the Net, Packsack smiles and more.
To find out more information, sign up for PAR (pre-authorized remittance) or to obtain envelopes, please contact the church office.
What do you mean when you say…
Lent: Lent is 40 days plus 5 Sundays, in addition to Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday. Lent begins with Ash Wednesday. It is a time of quiet reflection, prayer and preparation for the Easter season.
Advent: 4 weeks leading up to Christmas (includes 4 Sundays). It is a time of hope, joy, peace and love, as we watch and anticipate the birth of the Christ child.
Congregation: A group of people who come together to worship God. We refer to the people who come to worship at Trinity as the Congregation.
A.O.T.S.: This is a men’s fellowship group that welcomes all men of the church. It stands for As One That Serves and comes from Jesus who said “I am among you as one that serves.” The AOTS usually meets for worship, fellowship and service to others on the first Saturday of the month. See the calendar for details about the meeting time.
U.C.W.: All women of the United Church are considered members of the United Church Women or U.C.W. The U.C.W. meets on the 2nd Monday of the month for fellowship, service and personal growth. See the calendar for more details.
The Board: The Board is comprised of members of the church, referred to as Elders, who oversee the many activities and functions of the Trinity Congregation. The term of office is 3 years. Members of the Board serve on a committee that is responsible for certain aspects of the church. The committees are as follows: Building and Grounds; Christian Education and Outreach; Communication; Finance and Stewardship; Ministry and Personnel; Pastoral Care and Visiting; Worship; Trustees; Presbytery Representatives, UCW representative, AOTS representative, Sunday School representative, Youth representative and a Member at Large. You must be a member of the church through profession of faith (confirmation) or transfer of membership in order to serve on the Board.
Where (and what) is…
Sanctuary: This is the part of the church building where we worship and have our church service.
Chancel: The chancel is located in the sanctuary and encompasses the area where the choir sits, the communion table as well as the pulpit (where the sermon is given) and lectern (where the scripture is read from).
Narthex: As you enter the church through the main doors onFerguson you will step into the Narthex. Usually there will be greeters here to welcome you to Trinity. This is also where the elevator is located to bring those who need it up to the sanctuary or down to the Sunday School Hall.
Sunday School Hall: You can find this room by going through the door in the Narthex. This is where we meet following the service for coffee and fellowship and, occasionally, lunch. The Church school occasionally uses this room as well.
McIntyre Doors: This is a second entrance into the church. The entrance is located on McIntyre Street and will bring you in by the church office. You are welcome to use either entrance (the McIntyre Street or Ferguson Street entrance). The main doors on Ferguson are generally only open during Sunday service and for special events taking place in the Sanctuary. Through the week you can come into the church through the McIntyre Street doors. If the door happens to be locked please ring the bell to the left of the door.
Fireside Room: This room can be found on the same floor as the church office and Sunday school Hall. It is located either by walking through the kitchen or along the hallway past the washrooms.
I want to know more about…
Sunday School: Children in Junior Kindergarten through to Grade 8 are invited to Sunday School. At Trinity we use a Workshop Rotation model of teaching. Children are grouped based on age and rotate through different stations each week. For example, if the topic is the Call of the Disciples, the children will learn about the topic through different learning stations each week such as games, crafts, drama, cooking, music and more. Occasionally the children will meet as a whole group during special times such as Easter, Christmas and through the summer months.
Children start the first part of their morning worshipping in the Sanctuary with their families. At Children’s time, Rev. Ted will usually invite the children to join him on the steps of the Chancel for a story. Following this special time, the children will then go downstairs to the Fireside Room accompanied by their teachers, to gather for Sunday School. A child is chosen to collect donations and lead the group in a prayer. Following this, the children have a brief music session where they learn and practice a song. Approximately once a month the children have the opportunity to offer their song or a short skit during Children’s Time. The children then go to their learning stations and begin Sunday School.
Nursery: Preschool and infant children are cared for in our nursery by a paid caregiver. Volunteers in the nursery must have a valid Criminal Record Check. The nursery is located on the ground floor across from the washrooms and is available from 10:20 until the end of service.
Youth and Young Adult Groups: We have 3 youth groups: a junior youth group for young people in grade 7 through to grade 12, a young adult group for grade 12 and up and an Inter-denominational Youth Group. We meet at various times throughout the year for prayer vigils, retreats, music, talk, service projects and more. Information about upcoming events are printed in the bulletin, monthly calendar as well as here on the webpage.
Junior Choir: Our junior choir is comprised of children who love to sing. Children Senior Kindergarten and up are invited to join in anytime. Look for information in the bulletin or speak with Betty Farris, Trinity’s Minister of Music.
Mustard Seed Productions: Opportunities for youth who have an interest in theatre both onstage or behind the scenes are welcome to participate. In the past we have performed Cotton Patch Gospel, Godspell, Creation, Garden Varieties and Free to Be. Information about youth activities including Mustard Seed can be obtained from Lisa Blais or Darlene Laferriere.
Choir and Music at Trinity: The choir is for people of all ages who would like to “Praise the Lord with song.” New members are always welcome.
People of all ages who play an instrument or sing, and would like to make an occasional musical offering during worship are invited to contact the Minister of Music.
The United Church of Canada: If you would like to learn more about Trinity United Church or the United Church of Canada please set up a visit with Rev. Dr. Ted Harrison or Lisa Blais (Designated Lay Minister). There are a number of books and materials available. You can also visit the United Church of Canada’s website at www.united-church.ca
How to join a group or committee: Members of the Board are elected in the new year at the annual congregational meeting. If you are interested in joining the Board please look for announcements in the bulletin in December, talk with the Board Chair or contact the office. We welcome and encourage new members. Please note that Board members must be members of the Trinity, either by transfer of membership or by Confirmation.
At anytime throughout the year you are welcome to join or visit any of the groups that meet here at Trinity. More information can be found under the About Us menu by clicking on groups.