Worship can be defined very succinctly as what happens when one realizes the presence of Holy God. Obviously, using this definition, worship can happen at any time and at any place, alone or in the presence of others. At First United Methodist Church of Whitesboro, we place considerable importance on the experience of corporate worship, meaning worship as the body of Christ. It is our privilege to join together for the purpose of praising our God, our Savior. Our services are for the most part fairly traditional in form, with a mix of traditional and contemporary music. Being a Methodist church, we use liturgy in our worship also. We offer a spoken Affirmation of Faith at many services, including but not limited to the Apostles' Creed. At various times of the year, we will use responsive readings of the Psalms. The Lord's Prayer is a regular part of worship, as are intercessory prayers. Between hymns, prayers and liturgy, there are always parts of the worship that include active participation by the whole body of Christ. Sermons often follow a theme for several weeks at a time, sometimes following the Lectionary suggestions but always based on scripture. Holy Communion is offered at least once a month on the first Sunday of the month, and this sacrament is offered also at other appropriate times, such as Christmas Eve or Maundy Thursday. The worship team (pastor, music director, worship coordinator, youth and children's directors) meet regularly to plan worship that will be meaningful, that will engage the heart and mind of the individual, that will encourage and teach and challenge each worshipper to grow and to "go forth and make disciples of Christ, for the transformation of the world".
Perhaps the most important element of worship is in the heart of the worshipper. Coming to worship services with a mind ready to hear the Word and a heart ready to praise, coming full of expectation and desire to be fed as well as to feed others, this attitude is what ultimately determines whether or not "worship" really happens for the individual. Praise God, from Whom ALL blessings flow! Praise God, all creatures here below! Praise God above, ye heavenly hosts! Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost!