Roosevelt Coalition

Central Congregational Church

Worship Information
 

 

Sunday Worship Info – 11 AM

We invite God into our midst.
We celebrate with familiar hymns and contemporary music.
We involve our children and youth.
We are inspired by the gifts of our musicians, choirs and soloists.
We share our joys and triumphs, as well as our concerns and pain.
We laugh together and we grieve together.
We pray together—for one another, for our leaders, and for justice in our world.
We present our financial gifts.
We learn how God is still speaking today through ancient texts, modern readings, personal stories, videos, and contemporary sermons.
We gather around the Lord’s Table for Holy Communion.
We are different, but we are a community.
We invite to join us for Worship.
You are Central.

Embodying Our Faith

Baptism

Baptism with water and the Holy Spirit is the sign and seal of our common discipleship. The act of baptism also marks the beginning of new life of discipleship with Christ, the human response to that gift.

As often as necessary, we offer the sacrament of baptism to those who request it—infants, children, youth or adults. Confirmation classes are offered periodically for those previously baptized.

For more information, we’ve prepared a baptism Q&A that you can find below. 

Holy Communion

The communion meal recalls the table fellowship Jesus shared with his disciples, and in particular the Last Supper on the night before his death as well as his appearances to the disciples during meals following his resurrection. Throughout its history these Biblical events have been central to the Church’s worship life.

At Central, we usually observe Holy Communion on the first Sunday of each month.

For more information, we’ve prepared a Communion Q&A which you can find below. 

Baptism Q&A

What does Baptism signify?

The sacrament of baptism is an outward and visible sign of the grace of God. Through baptism a person is joined with the universal church, the body of Christ. In baptism, God works in us the power of forgiveness, the renewal of the spirit, and the knowledge of the call to be God’s people always.

 

How does Baptism take place?

Baptism with water and the Holy Spirit is the sign and seal of our common discipleship. Since baptism is God’s gift, the Holy Spirit is called to be upon the water and those being baptized. The act of baptism also marks the beginning of new life of discipleship with Christ, the human response to that gift.

 

Why is water used?

Water is an essential element of baptism. Water is a prominent symbol of cleansing and life in the Bible — the water of creation, the great flood, the liberation of Israel through the sea, the water of Mary’s womb, the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River, the woman at the well, and Jesus’ washing of the feet of the disciples. That is why water is visibly present in the service.

 

How does Central Congregational UCC baptize?

Normally, we baptize by either pouring or sprinkling. However, if you prefer immersion baptism, we will do our best to make that possible. We do not believe that any single mode of baptism is “right” or superior to another. In fact, the various modes of baptism each offer a distinct beauty and meaning. Baptism by immersion symbolizes sharing in the sign of Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection.

“In accordance with the teaching of our Lord and practice prevailing among evangelical Christians, the United Church of Christ recognizes two sacraments: Baptism and the Lord’s Supper or Holy Communion.” — From the Preamble to the Constitution of the United Church of Christ

Who is baptized in the UCC?

Infants, children, youth and adults. For infants and children, as well as for youth and adults who have never been baptized before, baptism marks their acceptance into the care of Christ’s church, the sign and seal of God’s grace and forgiveness, and the beginning of their Christian faith and life.

I’ve been baptized before. Do I need to be baptized again to be part of Central Congregational UCC Dallas?

The United Church of Christ recognizes the validity of all baptisms, therefore there is no need for re-baptism. If there is a question about whether baptism has taken place, a conditional phrase may be added as a person is baptized, such as “if you are not already baptized.” It is a well-accepted practice, however, for people to renew their baptismal vows in a service of baptismal renewal, such as the Order for Renewal of Baptism in the UCC Book of Worship. 

Is there a special time for Baptism?

Baptism is a personal celebration in the lives of the individual candidates and their families. It is also a celebration within the local church family and a recognition of its commitment. For this reason, baptism is celebrated in the presence of the community gathered for worship. If circumstances require baptism to take place outside of corporate worship, members of the local church, if possible, may participate in the ceremony with the pastor. In urgent circumstances, such as imminent death, any Christian may perform the baptism.

 

Are sponsors present?

Parents, in consultation with the pastor, may choose sponsors or Godparents for infants and young children who are to be baptized. Other candidates for baptism may also be given this opportunity to have sponsors. At the time of the baptismal service, the sponsors, who accompany the candidates and present them for baptism, may make promises identical to the promises of the parents concerning their role.

What words are used?

The Book of Worship of the United Church of Christ provides an Order for Baptism and orders for Affirmation of Baptism. The recognition of our baptism by the ecumenical church is important to us, and the Book of Worship encourages the use of language recognized in most Christian churches: “I baptize you in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.” Feminine images for God may surround these words to enrich understandings and offer balance.

I’ve never been baptized. Is it too late?

Absolutely not! If you would like to talk about what baptism might mean to you spiritually, don’t hesitate to make an appointment with one of our pastors to have a conversation about it. This can be a rich, meaningful part of your spiritual journey.

“For in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith. As many of you as were baptized into Christ Jesus have clothed yourself with Christ. There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus.” — Galatians 3:26-28

What is Confirmation?
Confirmation is a process during which individuals explore their faith and confirm baptismal vows that they made when they were young, or that were made on their behalf as an infant. Confirmation often occurs around age twelve or thirteen. At Central, Confirmation consists of a series of classes of exploration of faith with the pastor and a final faith project (a written paper or another creative endeavor). Confirmation concludes as the individual formally becomes a member of a specific community of faith.

Communion Q&A

What is a Sacrament in the United Church of Christ?
Sacraments are ritual actions in worship which, according to Scripture, were instituted by Jesus. In the sacraments of baptism and communion we ask the Holy Spirit to use water, bread, and wine to make visible the grace, forgiveness, and presence of God in Christ.
The origin of Communion

The communion meal recalls the table fellowship Jesus shared with his disciples, and in particular the Last Supper on the night before his death as well as his appearances to the disciples during meals following his resurrection. Throughout its history these Biblical events have been central to the Church’s worship life.

 

The meaning of Communion

In the sacrament of Holy Communion, also called the Lord’s Supper or Eucharist, meaning “thanksgiving,” Christians hear, taste, touch and receive the grace of God revealed through Jesus Christ in a unique way. Communion is:

  • a joyous act of thanksgiving for all God has done, is doing, and will do for the redeeming of creation;
  • a sacred memorial of the crucified and risen Christ, a living and effective sign of Christ’s sacrifice in which  Christ is truly and rightly present to those who eat and drink;
  • an earnest prayer for the presence of the Holy Spirit to unite those who partake with the Risen Christ and with each other, and to restore creation, making all things new;
  • an intimate experience of fellowship in which the whole church in every time and place is present and divisions are overcome;
  • a hopeful sign of the promised Realm of God marked by justice, love and peace.

 

The United Church of Christ Book of Worship reminds us that “the invitation and the call [to the supper] celebrate not only the memory of a meal that is past, but an actual meal with the risen Christ that is a foretaste of the heavenly banquet at which Christ will preside at the end of history.”

“In accordance with the teaching of our Lord and the practice prevailing among evangelical Christians, the United Church of Christ recognizes two sacraments: Baptism and the Lord’s Supper or Holy Communion.” — From the Preamble to the Constitution of the United Church of Christ

What elements are used? What do they mean?

The broken bread and poured wine (non-alcoholic grape juice) represent — present anew — the crucified and risen Christ. The wheat gathered to bake one loaf and the grapes pressed to make one cup remind participants that they are one body in Christ, while the breaking and pouring announce the costliness of Christ’s sacrifice for the forgiveness of sin.

 

How is Communion served?

Communion is served by both laity and clergy and everyone is invited to the table to receive the elements and a short prayer of blessing. Usually, we serve communion by intinction; that is, your server will hand you a piece of bread which you then dip in the wine (non-alcoholic grape juice) and place it in your mouth. If you are unable to come forward, we will bring communion to you in your seat.

 

Why do you use grape juice?

Although the historic and ecumenical Christian practice has been to use wine, the use of unfermented grape juice by many Protestant churches since the late nineteenth century expresses pastoral concern for recovering alcoholics and also enables the participation of children and youth.

Who may receive Communion?

At Central Congregational UCC Dallas, “everyone, everyone, everyone” is welcome at the Table. No exceptions. Communion a sacrament of the church, a special place of meeting with God and an experience of unity with each other. All are welcome at the table without regard to church membership or belief.

May my children take communion?

They may. Children can connect with God in beautiful, simple, mystical ways and the experience of communion can be a place of spiritual nurture and feeding to your child. Receiving communion with the church also reinforces the sense of belonging, of being a part of the body. If you would like for a pastor or children’s leader to talk with your child about communion, just let us know.

 

I haven’t been baptized. May I still receive communion?

You may. The communion table has gifts of its own and God can meet you there. If you would like to discuss baptism or the connection between baptism and communion in the sacramental life of the church, or if you would like to talk about being baptized, our pastors are happy to meet with you.

 

How often is Communion served?

Central Congregational UCC Dallas offers Holy Communion numerous times throughout the year, including the first Sunday of each month.

 

Does the church provide communion for those who cannot come to worship on Sundays?

We can. Just let us know if you or someone you know is home-bound or hospitalized and would like to receive communion. With advance notice and proper clearance, we can also serve communion in other institutions such as recovery centers or prisons.

When Jesus was at table with them, he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened, and they recognized him.” — Luke 24;30-31

 

Liturgical Seasons

Lent and Easter

Lent begins on Ash Wednesday and lasts for forty days. It’s a time for personal reflection and repentance, patterned after Jesus’ journey into the wilderness.

Lent ends on the joyous day of Easter, where we celebrate Jesus’ resurrection and the glory of life around us.

Advent and Christmas

The season of Advent includes the four Sundays leading to Christmas, and the celebration of Christmas Eve and Christmas. It’s a special time where we prepare for, anticipate and celebrate the birth of our savior, Jesus Christ.

There’s special music, and our worship includes the lighting of the Advent candles for the four Sundays of Advent, as well as our traditional candlelight Christmas Eve worship services.  

Throughout the season, we offer opportunities for outreach to our community.

Special Services

Throughout the year we have services that include Music Sundays, recognition of our volunteers, Blessing of the Animals, Missions, and more.

Interested in Participating?

We invite your participation in the life of our community of faith. Bring your time, your talents, your energy, your passion! Most importantly, bring yourself - whoever you are and wherever you are on this journey of life, love and faith. Let us journey together!

Upcoming Events

 

 

Get In Touch

CENTRAL CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH

5600 Royal Lane
Dallas, TX 75229

214.363.1300 (T)
214.363.8939 (F)

info@centraluccdallas.org

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