We will go to two service times: 9:00am & 10:30am
Why are we doing this?
In short, we are running out of room. Over the past two years, our attendance has increased by over 20%. We increased the number of seats in the worship center by 13%. On many Sundays, a family of four or more that arrives close to the start of service has a hard time finding seats that would allow the entire family to sit together.
What will the new set-up look like?
The two services would feature the same music and the same message. In the worship center, the two services would be identical (with the exception of a final song). The main difference would be concerning childcare and Sunday school for the elementary kids.
How will the two services differ concerning children?
During the 9:00 am service, we will provide preschool only. We will not have classes for the elementary students. During the 10:30 am service, we will offer both preschool and elementary classes (through 5th grade). The 10:30 am service will function in the same way the current service functions.
Why are we not offering elementary classes during the 9:00 am service?
Because we want to encourage parents to bring their elementary students with them to the 9:00 am service and have their children attend class during the 10:30 am service. This would allow parents to worship with their kids during the 9:00 am service and serve during the 10:30 am service.
One of our core principles at Cornerstone is building families. Research shows that children who worship with their families in "Big Church" have a 38% greater probability of remaining in church after high school than those who spend their elementary years attending "Children's Church" exclusively (Why They Stay, p.88). We see the importance of mom and dad fostering a love for church and we want to encourage that.
For many, the idea of going to two services is scary--"I won't know everyone like I know them now!" We understand this concern and we will work hard to provide more "church-wide" activities throughout the year. From church-wide picnics to church-wide outings, we are working to give you opportunities to see "everyone."
Still, we should rejoice that God continues to send us new people on a regular basis. In order to meet the needs of God's provision, sometimes we have to take steps of faith and be "uncomfortable." But we can do this knowing that we are doing what God calls us to do--to know Jesus and to make him known!
Finally, if you have questions, please reach out to one of the elders. Also, if you are serving on one of the various teams that make Sunday morning happen (children, music, welcome, etc.), you should be hearing from your team leader over the next few weeks as they prepare for going to two services.