Are you learning English? The Basic English Service is for you.
All are welcome!
Basic English Service @ Church of the Servant
Church of the Servant is a diverse community of Christ’s servants, a home for God’s children, and a prism for God’s light in liturgy and life.
As children of the light, we desire to
- participate in worship that is Reformed and liturgical, historic and modern, local and global
- prepare people for service by nurturing their gifts and encouraging them to grow in discipleship
- create a fellowship where the burdened and suffering will find support and comfort, where the alienated will be accepted, and where those seeking God will be shown the way
- present Christ to others by showing God’s love in Jesus for the world and promoting justice and peace for our neighbors near and far
In obedience to this call, Church of the Servant offers a worship service in basic English. The Basic English Service is for all who come, especially those whose understanding of English prevents full participation in the larger worship service.
The BES enhances COS’s call to:
- reach out with love, encouragement, and fellowship to people of all cultures, faiths, and language groups;
- nurture a sense of community and belonging for all;
- embrace those not yet enfolded in Christ’s family and invite them to confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior;
- disciple all believers in the gospel;
- create space for the gifts of the global Church to be mutually shared and appreciated across lines of language, ethnicity, culture, and status, thereby expressing the unity-in-diversity of the Church.
Revised, Epiphany 2017
April 23, 2017
BES, 11 am in Room 4
“Behind Locked Doors”
Rev. Len Vander Zee
Frequently Asked Questions
The Basic English Service (BES) began in April 2009 for English language learners. This includes New Americans who have arrived in the USA as refugees or asylum seekers. It also includes other internationals who have difficulty with English. BES is for anyone whose understanding of English prevents full participation in other worship services. Whether you are new to English or not, anyone is welcome!
Between 60 and 90 people typically attend each Sunday. Worshippers include New Americans and American-born folks; former refugees and asylum seekers; international college and seminary students; young children and retirees.
We try to use simple English vocabulary and short sentences in BES. The service is relaxed and welcoming to all. We often begin by learning a new song. We don’t use paper liturgies and hymnbooks. Instead we use a projector for the songs and liturgy. We use lots of images, including for the sermon. People share their joys and requests during the prayer time. We also celebrate communion together every Sunday. Every service ends with everyone joining in a circle to sing “My Friends, May You Grow in Grace.”
Church of the Servant desires to welcome, enfold, and disciple people of all cultures and language groups. In order to serve those who find the terminology and liturgy of the COS to be a barrier to full participation, a service in basic English is provided, including audio-visual elements, participatory prayers, and music.
The purpose of the Basic English Service is to reach out with encouragement, fellowship and edification for all who attend, in order to express the unity of believers and to embrace those not yet enfolded in Christ’s family. Through a variety of worship styles, art, and music, the worshippers are encouraged to believe, confess Christ as Savior and Lord, and become members of Christ’s church.
There is a lunch after worship on the first Sunday of every month (Sept. – May). BES also has occasional gatherings for fellowship. An ongoing Bible study class known as “Our Faith” meets Sundays at 10:00am. This class invites participants to explore the Bible together. We read carefully, ask questions, and discuss.