What are you likely to experience when you visit a Seventh-day Adventist worship service?
That will depend partly on the size and make-up of the congregation. There are more than fifteen congregations and groups in Ireland and Northern Ireland and almost 400 congregations around the British Isles. We have a remarkably diverse membership. The one thing you will be sure of is a warm welcome. Adventists enjoy worship and will generally spend most of a Saturday (Sabbath) morning in church. Some like to spend almost the whole day in various forms of worship and fellowship!
The first part of the morning, starting around 10:00, will be spent in a Bible discussion. This is usually age specific with different classes for children, youth and adults. In most churches they will have been following a study guide – but if you don't have one it doesn’t matter. Carrying a Bible can be helpful – but that is not essential either – most churches have Bibles to spare. You can check the current week topic of a quarterly theme here - https://absg.adventist.org/. In some churches the discussion will be led from the front with the congregation joining in. In many other places the study takes place in smaller groups allowing for greater participation.
For Adventists the main worship service generally starts around 11:15 – 11:30 on a Saturday morning. Style will vary from church to church but the service will include singing (either hymns or contemporary Praise and Worship songs), children story, special items (song, poem), congregational prayer, Bible reading and a sermon. Lay-members are often heavily involved in the worship.
Adventists enjoy their food as well as fellowship. In many churches this has led to 'fellowship lunch' where families bring healthy food and share with each other and with visitors. Expect a diversity of (mainly) vegetarian cuisine, a warm welcome, and the likelihood of making a friend or two.
Many churches operate a Youth programme at some stage on a Friday night or a Saturday afternoon or evening. There are also many opportunities for Bible Study, often midweek and in the church or members' homes. Youth clubs, Adventurers and Pathfinders (similar to Scouts), Health or family orientated programmes run at different times of the week.
Have a look at the Irish Mission Facebook page where there are often details of special events in specific churches.