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Bethel is a very relaxed and casual community (a.k.a. wear what you like). Our services start at around 10:15 (we work on California time). Our doors open at 9:00. If you want to come early and relax or meditate as the band rehearses, you are welcome. Plus, if you come early you can enjoy some great fair trade, organic coffee.
Bethel is a very creative and progressive community. We worship with a band, so if you are expecting traditional liturgy – beware. We believe that God continues to inspire us today and it is important to be relevant in our forms of worship. We do practice the components of a traditional liturgy; however, we express them differently and in non-traditional ways. Gathering, Proclamation of the Word, Eucharist, and The Sending are all parts of our communal worship experience.
We spend time singing together and to God because we believe that music and faith have an intimate bond. Some of the songs we sing connect us with the generations of Christians who have sung these sacred words before us in order to reorient their lives toward God. In singing these songs, we are connected as simultaneous saints and sinners to those who came before us. We too are seeking to reorient ourselves to God and to his love. We deeply believe that music often takes us places words alone cannot. We believe music has the power to change the world: songs bring down walls, songs unite, songs give hope, songs heal.
In our services, you will likely experience various forms of contemporary worship – jazz, bluegrass, folk, pop, and traditional music. Our goal is to create an atmosphere where the spirit of God welcomes us in, renews, refreshes, and reawakens the spirit of God inside of us, and then sends us out into the world to be his hands and feet.
Community is central to our church. There are times of sharing the peace during the service and we also love anyone who wants to join us for coffee and snacks following worship, under the patio. Just ask anyone and they’ll tell you how to get there.
We also practice communion at each Sunday service. At Bethel, we believe that the table is God’s table and all are welcome to receive communion. All we ask is that you are open to receive God’s love, hope, and healing.
We have a time of sharing what God has given us through our time of offering. You will notice that our ushers place the gifts on the altar. We do this to symbolize that these offerings are not about the church, but they are gifts to god: gifts of thanksgiving and abundance. We recognize that each of us in America live in deep abundance compared to the rest of the world, and it is our pleasure to give this back to God.
For Children, we have a children’s message and following that (if families want), their kids are welcome to go to children’s church, a time of faith development geared directly to the age and learning styles of your children. All of our lead teachers have had background checks to ensure the safety of your children while they are in our care.
Overall, it is our hope that those who come and engage in our community will find a deeper sense of hope, healing, love, and grace than they had prior to that visit. Even deeper, we hope that you will get involved and that Bethel will become a place you can call home and a place where you can find friends to serve alongside. Bethel is a richly diverse community – diverse in ethnicity, socioeconomic status, political affiliation, age, and faith. It is one of the most beautiful parts of our community, and we would love you to join us.