Grace Bible Church is a small, Christ-centered Bible church in Port Charlotte, Florida. Our Pastor, Mark Clarke, does expository (verse by verse) preaching.
The first Sunday of the month is our communion service, which is quite a bit different from our normal services. You’ll notice that as soon as you walk in–the chairs are set up in a large circle, and the table with the bread and the cup is in the center. We sing a few hymns, and Pastor Mark Clarke delivers the message God has laid on his heart. After that, there is a time for everyone and anyone in the congregation to respond to the message, suggest a hymn to sing, praise God, confess something on their heart, read a passage of scripture, or anything else that the Holy Spirit prompts for the edification of the body. There is then a transition song, and various men from the assembly who have prepared themselves lead us in worship around the table by drawing our attention to Christ and the significance of communion. We then pass out the elements and partake. Afterwards, we form a big circle around the church and sing a verse from a song, usually Amazing Grace. Following the service, we have our fellowship meal. Everyone enjoys helping set up and getting to spend time with fellow believers.
The second Sunday of every month we start out with a scripture reading, followed by about thirty minutes of singing. We sing a variety of songs, from old time hymns to newer praise choruses. We have a music team of 9 or more people from our church of all ages and positions in life. After the singing, the children are free to go to junior church or nursery if the parents so desire. These ministries are led by our young people.
Pastor Mark (or, on occasion, another brother) brings a message from the passage we are currently studying as God leads. We have about fifteen to twenty minutes afterwards to talk, and then Grace Bible Institute begins. This is a time where we usually discuss the message with Pastor Mark–bringing up questions, comments, and practical applications. (Childcare is also provided during this time.)