Parts 1 and 2 of this little series contained some basic templates for a 75-minute Christian gathering. This third variation is especially good for those occasions where the content of the Bible passage or sermon is relatively simple and straightforward, but contains a powerful challenge with numerous implications for our lives. It has the sermon quite early in the meeting, followed by a more extended time for prayer, reflection, discussion and other things (such as celebrating the Lord’s Supper together).
This can also be a useful pattern to follow where the sermon is longer and more demanding, but is not amenable to the ‘two-parter’ template (which is part 4, to follow).
Template 3: Earlier sermon
|9:30||Welcome and opening prayer, introduction to this morning’s theme.|
|9:32||Song of joy, praising the great deeds and character of God.|
|9:35||Bible readings (one each from the Old Testament and New Testament) with brief introduction/explanation as necessary.|
|9:40||Response to readings: Creed or psalm or a song of dedication/exhortation (e.g. ‘May the mind of Christ’).|
|9:43||Sermon (followed by optional question time; depending on the topic and/or time available, it may be good to omit question time in some instances so as not to dilute the power of the challenge).|
|10:15||Responding to God’s word, selected from the following:
|10:37||Announcements and family news.|
|10:42||Song (reflecting main theme).|
|10:45||Round-up and morning tea. (Seat people after the song, and bring their minds back to what we’ve learned as a lead-in to conversation at morning tea.)|