Oconee Presbyterian Church is located at:
right next door to the Oconee Civic Center, and very close to Oconee High School. We are about 1 mile west of the intersection at Butlers Crossing. Our Sanctuary, Offices, outdoor Pavilion, Playground, Communal Garden, and Ball Fields are all at this location.
Our congregation comes from Athens/UGA, Watkinsville, Bishop, Bogart, Winder, Statham and beyond.
As You Arrive
From the moment you park your car, we hope you feel our efforts to welcome and include you.
There are three main entrances, one at the front best for the Sanctuary, one around back for Youth and Adult classes and Office, and one all the way around on the side best for Children.
But don’t worry, all three entrances lead to the center space called the “Narthex” where you will find snacks, drinks, and fresh coffee every Sunday morning. Our greeters and ushers will guide you and answer questions. You’ll bump into plenty of people getting ready for groups or worship. It usually happens that you see someone you already know!
Entering the Worship Space
As you enter the Worship space, you will be given a bulletin with the order of service. You’ll see a large screen at the front projecting images, song words, or other aids.
We don’t have pews or hardwood floors. The worship space is carpeted, and there are movable, padded chairs which we sometimes move around for special seasons or services.
You will see a pulpit, a font, and a table. The pulpit is where children, youth, and adults lead us in scripture and prayers. The font is the bowl, pitcher, and water where we baptize all ages. The table is where we celebrate the Lord’s Supper and remember how the world’s brokenness is being re-membered by the power of God.
We don’t have an organ. We do have a powerful piano and pianist. We do have choirs, and handbells. You will likely see few guitars, other instruments, maybe a fiddle or hammer dulcimer or bagpipes.
Children in Worship
All children are always welcome for all of worship. They lead us in worship. They are welcome to be themselves and make blessed children’s noises, all during worship. Children learn how to worship by participating in worship. Adults learn to see the kingdom through the eyes and minds of children. Therefore, all ages worship together.
On the way in, Children get a bulletin too, so they can follow along, or a few books from the children’s shelf. We invite infants to 5th graders to gather mid-worship for a special conversation. We usually give these children a special craft as they go back to their seats.
If parents need a break this morning, or have a child whose volume or body is too distracting to them or to others, try our special children’s area at the back of the sanctuary. There’s a table just their size, and a few rocking chairs for supervising parents. At the parents’ option, for infants to pre-K, there is also childcare available during the entire service, or after the Children’s sermon.
Together, we will hear a bell ring three times, calling out attention. We sing a few songs, and call ourselves to worship with a litany and prayer. We will share some announcements from the many different ministries across the church.
We often read aloud words of prayer or praise. By saying words of confession, affirmation, or scripture out loud, the words of faith soak into us. But hey, if certain words don’t fit or feel right to you, no biggie! Skip over them, and rejoin where you can.
We read God’s word. Our pastor or guest preacher will show us what those words might have meant in the original languages and ancient context, and then suggest what they might be saying today. If the preacher asks a question, feel free to respond!
Together, we give back to God offerings of time, talent, treasure, and prayer. All are encouraged to give regularly and generously, then give a little extra when a need arises.
All throughout worship, prayer, and study, there will usually be laughter, maybe a few tears, and quiet time for personal reflection. In everything we do, God is our audience, the one we gather to hear, worship, and serve.
Folks and families often linger after to discuss a idea, to continue conversations about life and family that started before worship, or to check with the pastor or others on a specific prayer need. Afterward, families might go out together for a meal, and might invite you to join them!
The way we say it is… We dont “come to church.” Instead, we come together to worship… Then we GO to BE the Church. We go from worship as empowered disciples back into our community and the world to share God’s love in Word and deed, and to relieve suffering in Christ’s Name.