New to St Stephen's?
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Welcome! Whether you've just moved to the area, have lived here all your life, or are visiting us, we hope the website helps you find out what you want to know about St Stephen's.

Click to find out key info about the church...


When & where does the church meet?

The church meets every Sunday with services at 9am (traditional), 10.30am (informal) and 6.30pm (Evening Worship).  There is a cafe between the morning services at 10am where everyone can catch up over fresh coffee or tea, with squash for children.

We meet at St Stephen's Church, which has a modern flexible worship area: fully carpeted and with chairs rather than pews. A map and our contact details can be found here.

Don't get confused by the large old building with a spire, this is the old church which converted to flats in 1987. We are in the new building on the edge of the roundabout, as you approach from St Stephen's Rd.

What about parking?
There is limited parking available on the site, mainly for people with a blue badge or older people, but there is plenty of parking on the streets nearby.
(Note if you visit us on a weekday there are certain hours when only holders or residents permits are allowed to park, 9am to 10am and 3pm to 4pm as at May 2014, but check the signs for latest before you park!)


What to expect when I visit the church


You can expect a warm welcome, great worship, a bible based talk and a group of friendly people gathering to learn more about God.
You will also be given a bulletin (with our news for the week) and free tea, coffee and biscuits!

9.00am is our traditional service, where we use service books, and sing classic hymns with words on screens, accompanied by organ or piano.
10.30am is our lively informal service (with children's groups), all the words for the service and worship songs and hymns will be on the screens.  Sung worship is a mix of contemporary and classic and is led by a band as well as organ or piano.
Click here for more information about Sunday morning services.
6.30pm is our Evening Service which is usually a short (30mins) service of said Evening Prayer.  Several times a term we hold a less formal celebration or themed service.

Do ask any of our welcomers if you have any questions, and they will happily explain where everything is and what is going on!


What happens for children and young people at church?


We have a full programme for children and young people at our 10.30am service. Children and young people stay with their parents at the start of the service as we worship in song together before children and youth go to their groups. There is a creche for under 3s, and four age based groups (Cool Christians for under 11 and Footsteps for over 11)
If you are new you are welcome to go out with your child/children to settle them in. (You will later be asked to complete a simple registration form so that we have everything we need to know).
Children and young people can expect to have fun learning about God in a relevant way, playing games, getting creative and singing.  We currently use a programme based on Scripture Union material.  Children then come back into church in time to join you for Holy Communion (see below).
 

Is there a dress code?

No!  Wear whatever you like!  Most people come casually dressed and in the summer many wear shorts.


How do I know I will fit in?


Even if you have not been to a church before, or for a while, you will be made very welcome, and you will not be forced to do anything you are not comfortable doing. We want you to feel right at home and enjoy the service. Do join us for the cafe between our services from 10.00am to 10.30am, or a chat after the service to get to know some people from the church.
 

What is the Peace?


At most services we have what is called the Peace, this is a chance to greet other people, with a friendly handshake or hug - people you know and people you don't!  You can move around or stay where you are, it's up to you.


What about Communion?

Towards the end of the service we normally celebrate Communion, when we remember Jesus' last meal with his disciples by sharing bread and wine. You are welcome to take bread and wine if this is your usual practise in a Christian church and you have been baptised.  Alternatively you can come forward for a blessing (keep your hands by your side and we will know this is what you want).  The stewards will indicate when you should come forward.

At St Stephen's we are happy for children who have been baptised to take Communion before they have been confirmed, if they and their parents want this.  You just need to let the Vicar know, and stand beside them to indicate this.  Some families like this even for very young children, others prefer to wait until, as a teenager or adult, they publicly confirm their faith at a Confirmation service.  Our children and young people's groups have teaching on communion twice a year so that they understand what this is all about.

We always have gluten free bread and non alcoholic wine as an option for those who prefer these.
 

What if I have any particular worries or needs for prayer?

We offer confidential 'Prayer Ministry' at both Sunday morning services, where members of our trained prayer team will pray for you, or for people you know, or if anything in our service has impacted on you. We also have a prayer tree where you can write a request and it will be prayed for at our Wednesday service.

Please contact the Vicar or Curate or chat to any of the leadership team if you have any special prayer needs.
 

Is the church accessible if I have special needs?

  • The building is all on one floor and there are no steps.
  • There is a disabled toilet.
  • The main church has an induction loop, simply turn your hearing aid to the T position.
  • We offer large print bulletins, service sheets (where used) and Bibles.

I have more questions, how can I get in touch and ask them?
 
Please feel free to contact us with any questions you have and we will be happy to help you.