NHCC Visitor Information
We at NHCC think of ourselves as
friendly and welcoming towards visitors, but we realize that visiting
any church can be strange or even intimidating. We hope this page
especially, and the rest of the web site generally, will answer some of
your questions and make your first visit easier and more
enjoyable. If you might be considering a wedding or baptism, click
here for more information on these special services. For a
note of welcome from our Senior Pastor, click
Everyone is welcome at NHCC.
We believe all people are God's children, fellow travelers in this
journey of life and faith, and we want each other's company and help
along the way. We have a mix of members: some have
joined as recently as the last few months, some within the last few
years, and some are long-time members. We are an Open and Affirming
Getting here is easy by car, by
MBTA, or on foot or bicycle if you don't live too far away.
Check out the directions page, which has a link to a
map. There is plenty of
If you can climb a few steps, it
is easiest to enter via the front door, shown in the accompanying
picture. (Click on the picture to see a larger version.)
The door is
a relic of the
fortress-like architectural style of 1906. In good weather it
will be open. In winter, turn the large ring
and pull to open the door, or knock (hard!) and someone will open it
If you cannot easily climb
steps, click here. The building is
accessible via a different entrance.
Sunday worship is 10 AM most of the year, 9:30 AM from
until Labor Day. Check the Calendar
page for exact dates of changeover.
you enter the main door, you
will be greeted by one or more of our deacons. The deacons will be glad to
answer any questions you have about NHCC, child care, worship,
etc. You will be invited to fill out a name tag, but feel free
to decline if it makes you uncomfortable. Most of the members
wear name tags on most Sundays. (Occasionally we forget or
someone's name tag gets lost, but we are doing pretty well lately.)
A deacon will hand you a worship
bulletin. Most people seat themselves, but ask the deacons if
you have questions or need assistance.
Crayons and colorable
bulletins for children, large-print worship bulletins and hymnals,
and hearing assistive devices are available. Ask one of the deacons
if you would like any of these and need help finding
them. Often they are out in plain sight; if so, feel free to
help yourself. (It will help us out if you return large-print hymnals and
hearing devices to the entry area after the service. You may
leave bulletins in the pews or take them with you.)
are always welcome at NHCC. Children can remain with you, or child care is available downstairs from
before the beginning of worship until the end of Education Hour. (Ask a
greeter for directions
downstairs; the building can be confusing if you aren't used to
most Sundays, children in Kindergarten through 5th grade start off with us in worship,
then go downstairs for church school. Middle and high school
youth meet upstairs on most Sundays and remain in worship on others.
See the Education
page for more details, and greeters will know the plan for the day. Parents are welcome to accompany children or stay
in the Sanctuary for the sermon and rest of the worship service.
Worship service will seem familiar if
you have attended other Protestant churches. If not, don't
worry! We have members from a variety of faith traditions, and
our only memorized ritual is recitation of the Lord's Prayer.
(The words are usually printed in the bulletin and can also be found in the hymnal "front matter" page 16, except that we use "trespasses" rather than
"debts." If you don't know what this is about, just
ignore it!) See the Worship
page for some details. The service usually lasts just over one
The worship bulletin lists the
planned activities of the worship service. An asterisk
indicates portions of the service where the congregation is invited
to stand. If a responsive reading is planned, the
congregation's words are indicated in bold. If we are
singing a hymn that is not in the hymnal, the words and music will
be in the bulletin. The bulletin also contains announcements
of events and messages of concern to the congregation.
during worship, we
usually spend a minute or so greeting our neighbors in the pews and
extending the hand of Christian fellowship. Be as anonymous or
as outgoing as you like, but this is a good chance to let someone in
the church know you are visiting if you wish. We do not single
out visitors or otherwise embarrass them.
Some people first
come to our church because of difficult personal
circumstances. If you would like a call or visit from our
pastor (whether because of difficulties or just to get to know us
better), please fill out a visitor card available in the pews or at
the door, or
ask one of the deacons, or
call the church office.
Like most churches, we take up a
collection. Offering plates are brought to each pew by the
ushers, passed from the center aisle along each pew, then back to
the usher in the center aisle. Visitors are not obliged to
contribute, and you will not feel conspicuous if you don't.
There will be quite a number of people who put nothing in the plate
because many of our members mail their contributions or donate
Of course you are welcome to make a contribution if you would like
to. If you have filled out a visitor card, you can drop
it in the plate.
our organ and organist, and therefore we remain seated to listen to
the Postlude. This may be an unusual custom, but we enjoy it.
worship, we meet in the Parlor for coffee, juice, light
snacks, conversation, and fellowship. This is a great time to
meet us and get to know us better.
Christian Education for
adults is scheduled to begin at 11:30 and lasts until 12:15, but times may vary
slightly depending on how long the worship service lasted.
Christian Education for children takes place during worship. Classes are separated by age; see the Education
page for details. Each class meets in its own room; please ask
for exact locations.
If you still have questions, please
see our Contact page to find out how to reach us.
are glad you are checking out our web pages (especially if you have
read this far!), but God's church is people, not bits and bytes.
Behind everything you see here on the web site, there are real people
who would love to have you visit us in the real world. Come, be
our guest, be as anonymous or as open as you feel comfortable with, but
mainly please come. You are always welcome.