Albanís is located in the community of East Luther-Grand Valley in the
Village of Grand Valley, Ontario, Canada. We are about an hour and a
half north west of Toronto and about half way between Orangeville to the
east and Arthur to the west. The village itself has a population of
We are part of the Anglican
Church in Canada, and we belong to the the Diocese
of Niagara. Although we are a small parish, our membership
reflects the richness of the Christian church in all its varieties and
we have members from various denominational backgrounds.
also have a good mix of young and old, and a very active Sunday School
for young children. Are you missing something in your life?
Come and join us for worship on a Sunday. Our regular service is
at 11:00 a.m.
Everyone can attend, all are welcome!
This is what the inside
of St. Alban's looks like. The church holds 100 people
St. Alban's is an Anglican Church and Anglicans use a fairly set form of
service from a book. The earliest prayer books in the Anglican
Church date back to the middle of the sixteenth century in
England. Various revisions have taken place since then. The
most recent Canadian revision of this prayer book was published in 1962
and is called the Book of Common Prayer. For more
information on the Book of Common Prayer click here to go to the Book
of Common Prayer page at the Anglicans Online site.
While The Book of
Common Prayer is still in use, most Anglican churches in Canada have
switched to the more recent Book of Alternative Services, which was
published by the General Synod of the Anglican Church in Canada in
1985. The language in this book is more modern and similar
language we all use in our day to day lives. The Book of
Alternative Services, like alternative service books used by other
churches in the Anglican Communion, was only meant to be an and
extension to the official Book of Common Prayer until a full revision of
the Book of Common Prayer could be undertaken. This has now
happened in the U.K., but not in Canada.
to expect if you attend a service.
A typical Anglican
service has three parts.
part of the service - Gathering
The first section focuses on
gathering the community together. We usually sing a hymn, and have
an official greeting. We also pray together that God will cleanse
our hearts so that we might come to the service of worship and sacrament
ready both physically and spiritually.
part of the service - Listening to the Word and offering our prayers
The second section of
the service involves reading from the Bible. The standard pattern
is to have a reading from the Old Testament, a psalm, a reading from the
New Testament, and a reading from the Gospel. All Anglican
churches follow a sequence of readings from the Bible known as the
Revised Common Lectionary. This common lectionary (lectionary
means selection of readings) is used by many congregations in the the
Roman Catholic Church, The Lutheran Church, The United Church, and The
Presbyterian Church. While there are slight differences,
especially around denomination specific events such as the RCIA program,
many other churches will be using the same readings as their neighbours
The second part of
the service also contains an homily, or a sermon. The word
"homily" is used to refer to a short (7 to 12 minute) talk
about how the readings for the day impact our lives as Christians.
It is meant to be thought provoking and informative. It is not
meant to be judgmental or condescending. A sermon is a longer
version of the same thing and in most Anglican churches this is about 12
to 20 minutes. There was a time when preachers would preach for
half an hour or forty five minutes at a time, but that is rare in our
"sound bite" world.
After we have
heard God's word read to us, and then broken open for us in a sermon or
homily, we enter a time of prayer. We pray for God's help and
thank God for the blessings we receive. This part of the service
often includes prayers for members of our community and others who have
asked for our prayers.
Then we say a
general confession together to acknowledge that we do not always live up
to our calling as Christians and that we need both God's forgiveness and
God's guidance to reach our fullest potential.
part of the service - Offering and Sacrament.
The third part of the
service begins with an offering of our resources. This includes
both money to support the church and its work, and an offering of bread
The third part of
the service continues with the Eucharist. The word
"Eucharist" means thanksgiving and this part of the service is
much like the Mass in a Catholic Church or communion in one of the
Protestant Churches. The priest who is the celebrant says prayer
which reminds us of how God has created all that we know and has worked
through the prophets and patriarchs to help us know him better.
The prayer also reminds us that the pivotal point of salvation history
was when God sent Jesus Christ into the world. Through the
sacrifice that Christ made on the cross, he bought our salvation and
freed us from the bondage of sin. In the resurrection he opened a
path to eternity. The priest blesses the bread and wine in the
course of the prayer, calling the presence of the Holy Spirit upon the
elements of bread and wine so that they become the body and blood of
Christ, just as Jesus promised his disciples at the last supper.
We then share in
this common meal and receive the presence of Christ. Anglicans
receive both a piece of bead (either in a wafer or a real piece of
bread) and take a sip from a cup of wine. Many people prefer to
dip the wafer or bread into the wine. Others prefer to receive the
wafer or piece of bread only. If you need to avoid alcohol then
receiving the bread only is a good option for you.
There is a short
prayer after communion, and the service usually ends with a
hymn. At the very end of the service the priest blesses the
people present and charges them to go back into the world to live out
their individual ministries.
This outline is
simplified, yet if you are thinking about joining us we hope that this
outline will help you feel more comfortable. There are many
responses that Anglicans make automatically. They are in the book,
but after years of practice many Anglicans no longer need the book to
say the right thing at the right time. Do not be put out if you do
not remember all the responses right away. If you are lost
or not sure what to do, you can either ask someone, or just watch what
everyone else is doing. It will feel more familiar after a couple
St. Alban's, like
most Anglican churches, welcomes Christians from all denominations to
the Lord's table to receive the body and blood of our Lord.
If you are not
sure about receiving communion then please feel free to come forward for
a blessing. You can indicate that you do not wish to receive
communion by folding your arms across your chest.