Westborough Evening Services
by Paul Hazelden

Notes for the Leaders

- What are we aiming to achieve?


- How are we aiming to achieve it?


- Organisation and structure

The Celebration Services will continue on the first Sunday of each month, and will continue to be planned and organised in the same way.

We will start again to celebrate communion on the third Sunday of each month, although these services will be somewhat different from those which were organised last year.

The evening services will all start at 6 pm, and we will plan for them all to finish around 7 pm. If people find this time inconvenient, please talk with Alan or Paul.

The fifth Sunday, when there is one, will be a joint service at Normandy.

This new structure is a temporary one, and the Elders will review it in the Autumn to see if it is working, if changes need to be made, or if it needs to be completely replaced by something different.


- Guidelines for Evening Services

We are aiming to achieve a healthy balance between continuity and variety. Most people will not come if it is the same every week and they get bored! They also will not come if it is totally different each week, and they do not know what to expect. The answer is to provide a reasonably consistent structure, and give the people leading it freedom to explore the ways in which God can use the different parts of the service.

Fundamentally, we want the evening services to be a place where people can come and expect to meet with God. We can meet with God in a variety of ways, and the emphasis can and should vary from week to week. But the basic desire needs to remain the same.

Each service will generally be the responsibility of a team of people, perhaps a Housegroup, or a group meeting specially to prepare for the service. You have been asked to prepare the service, but you are not alone!


- Minimum Content

We believe that each service should include as the absolute minimum the following features.


- Expected Content

In addition, we would normally expect each service to include the following features. Please include each of them unless God clearly leads you to do something different with the time.

On a practical level, you will need to arrange the following.

Of course, people are allowed to do more than one job during a service, if you feel that is appropriate. While we want to offer something of high quality to God, we also need to be free to take risks. We are a family, and nobody will object to the occasional sincere mistake. We are allowed to do things that are less than perfect as long as they will be a blessing to God and the congregation.


- And Finally

We want the experience of involvement in an evening service to be one which helps people grow as people and in their faith. We therefore want to encourage the practice of helpful, specific feedback to enable people to learn from the way others respond to their contribution. Please let us know how this can be provided in the most helpful way.

And, finally, do enjoy the experience of leading the evening service. It is a tremendous privilege to be allowed to minister to Godís people in this way, so use and enjoy the opportunity! Many God bless you, and the rest of Godís people at Westborough, so we can all discover something more of His love and His wonderful plan for our lives.


Alan Ritchie and Paul Hazelden

May 1996

Response Sheet

(To be given to each member of the congregation.)


The United Reformed Church in Westborough
Personal Response

You may find it helpful to write down your personal response to the service, to record what God said to you or did for you, or to record your response to Him.



You may wish to take this home with you, or to give it to one of the people leading the service so they can continue to pray for you.

You may wish to provide some feedback to the people leading the service, for their encouragement, and to help them understand what was happening during the service, what people found helpful and encouraging, or what people did not appreciate.


If you would appreciate further contact with someone from the church, for prayer or some other form of assistance, please give your name and address here.

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Copyright © 2000 Paul Hazelden
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